Yesterday I was perusing some photos from the Panama Canal cruise we took approximately a year ago. I was attempting to find subject material for a prospective painting and I had an image in mind. It was a shot of the fascinating cathedral in the old town of Cartagena, Colombia.
And then I looked at the rest of the shots I took. Such fascinating destinations and adventures: San Diego, Cabo San Lucas, Huatulco, Chiapas, Costa Rica (replete with crocodiles), the astonishing canal with a big fresh-water lake in the middle, Cartagena, the Caribbean, Fort Lauderdale. Man oh man. Such a trip.
And then I was a bit saddened by the fact that despite the magnificence of the adventure I didn’t fully appreciate it as thoroughly as I might have if I had been fully ‘there’. I mean, I loved the trip, but I realized that I was oddly picking up more enchantment in retrospect. That kind of sucked for me.
In that I mean I have gone through a lifetime of, I don’t think, being ‘fully there’ in the adventure that is ensuing. My lovely wife is. You can see on her how much ‘there’ she is with any adventure. She is immersed. I feel like I am on the sidelines, and I resent the hell of that little bit of self understanding.
A number of years ago we were on Rarotonga in the Cook Islands and one day as we were exploring the breathtaking Muri Lagoon I reached the conclusion that it doesn’t get better than this. And then I went to the thought that is was so astonishing that I honestly couldn’t take it all in so I would somehow have to live in the memory of what I thought it should feel like to be fully involved. I kind of resent my reality.
I will confess, and I hope this doesn’t fall into the realm of TMI, that one time in which I feel fully present and in which I do not want the moment to go away is in those too rapidly fleeting microseconds just prior to orgasm. Then I am involved. Utterly and blissfully involved and you don’t need me to elaborate further. But I want such feelings of ecstasy to transpire in other aspects of my life, but I am not quite certain of how to go about that.
I want to know why I have a tendency to emotionally run away from the good elements of my days. And I am blessed enough to have a plethora of good elements. I have traveled widely, I have friends I cherish, I have had lovers I adored, I am intelligent, I am tolerant, I have a good home and marriage. And so on and so on. Yet I too often tend to appreciate those elements in retrospect rather than in the actuality of the moment.
So, I take photographs of them, I paint them, I write about them, rather than live them at exactly the time and place. There is an irony in that the one thing I have never been able to write about successfully is that aforementioned pre-orgasmic moment of intimacy. I mean, truly how can such a thing be conveyed in mere words on a page. The writing of words is an intellectual activity, not one that involves the whole body, central nervous system and, I daresay, the soul.
I would like to make such feelings more universal in my life. I am not sure how to do that.