surprise! solitude satisfies

The journey to the West dances from side-to-side in my head. Right now, it's taking a break. As I tossed around the idea verbally to a co-worker, telling her how it would include some joint time with a best friend and some down time (maybe a day or two) solo, I was taken aback when "That sounds lonely" flew from her lips. I politely fluttered back "Actually, not really, I have a lot of things I could do with that time." People who don't enjoy their own company, who become uneasy in it, confuse the heck out of me. Why the need to be so dependent on others to gain satisfaction is prevalent among many, not all, but some, is an attribute I don't get; it's outright unfortunate. There are so many great things about solitude, or maybe I should rephrase, "self-seeking" solitude: solitude that is choosen, opposed to solitude that's the result of an unfortunate circumstance that leaves one stranded on an island or labels you as the kid that no one wants to sit with at lunch. I'm talking about planned solitude, like taking a solo roadtrip; going to the movies sans a wingman; spending a day in the park with yourself, a blanket and a good book. Is it that difficult to believe I'd have a good time alone in California?! Oh my, some people, how my heart aches for them. This life that's given to each of our waking beings is often shorthanded by a lack of vision, truncated desire and an abundance of worry. "Carpe diem" is more than a rally cry from Dead Poet's Society, it's a way of life: Pluck the flowers that bloom today before they're gone tomorrow; "Eat drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die" (an expression derived from the Biblical book of Isaiah, but poularized by Dave Matthews); and abbreviate your hopes for the future and capture the simple pleasures of the present.

Carpe Diem

by Robert Frost
Age saw two quiet children
Go loving by at twilight,
He knew not whether homeward,
Or outward from the village,
Or (chimes were ringing) churchward,
He waited (they were strangers)
Till they were out of hearing
To bid them both be happy.
"Be happy, happy, happy,
And seize the day of pleasure."
The age-long theme is Age's.
'Twas Age imposed on poems
Their gather-roses burden
To warn against the danger
That overtaken lovers
From being overflooded
With happiness should have it.
And yet not know they have it.
But bid life seize the present?
It lives less in the present
Than in the future always,
And less in both together
Than in the past. The present
Is too much for the senses,
Too crowding, too confusing—
Too present to imagine.

I think Frosty wants us to seize tomorrow because it seems the present is too much for him. I've had days like that. Either way, whether it be today or tomorrow, do something with it and don't be afraid to do something with it...alone.

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