I had some random mail yesterday, via Send Something. It was a pleasant surprise, as I have not had much random mail lately and I do love it so. The problem is, of course, that I am not sending any out. It has been many, many months since I could reach my paper crafting desk! I’ve even got much of my paper arts stuff out on permanent loan to a neighbour. Plans are even afoot, as mentioned recently in a sideways reference, to chuck it all out and make space for woolly things. But that’s not what this post is about.
The card was brief, but chatty, and invited further correspondence. The name, the spelling and handwriting, and the content all added up to my (false) conclusion that this missive came from a child. It was one particular sentence that did it for me:
“No offense.. but Ill bet liveing on a island can get boreing.”
It made me laugh out loud! Not in a scoffing way, but just at the sheer notion of it. It seemed so outrageous to one who finds their life a constant joy and delight and wishes almost daily that there were more hours to fill. I have always felt extremely fortunate to be living this island life. It still thrills me. I still cannot believe that I fell quite so lucky.
Sanday is a fairly small island, just a handful of miles wide and a couple of hands’ worth long. It has, roughly speaking around 150 properties and 550 people living here. There is always something happening! It is a strong and vibrant community, full of interested people. To tell the truth, I rarely getÂ involved in community activities – I have too much to do with my time already and just cannot fit it all in. I become forgetful when absorbed at my wheel or whatever, and miss the fact that things are happening in the outside world.
The island is a beautiful place, too. The landscape changes with the weather, and the weather changes with such frequency… one could spend a whole day just gazing at the sky – and pass another watching the sea.Â I don’t just mean that the scene changes with the weather – the coastal landscape changes in the literal sense. A beach may one day be full of sand, and the next be covered in stones or kelp – there are great discoveries to be made on every walk; wonderful new scenes to photograph or to paint or just to stand and absorb with all the senses. Away from the sea, the agricultural cycle affects the view too and the colours of the fields change, the stock moves from field to byre and back again… the abundance of wild flowers emerge in the spring and summer. There is always something new to look at, or birds and seals to watch.
I knit and I spin. I go to spinning group. I get involved in other fibre projects.Â I (theoretically) play with paper and glue and paint and related things. I go on long photo walks. I do a lot of webby stuff at my computer. I read. The dogs and the cats, and even the chooks, bring great joy to me and I spend much time watching them, photographing them, writing about them… I cook a great deal, and enjoy the eating of my kitchen output. I would like to grow more, and have a prettier garden and more veggies to cook, but I just do not find the time. I enjoy my husband too and spending time with him each day is a priority.
How could I ever be bored? Or truly so anyway. I have been known to wail it from time to time – but when I think on it, the only time that I ever feel that I am bored is when I am not up to scratch and I want to do things but feel unable to… it’s not for lack of interest or something wanting done, just that I hate being idle and confined to bed or sofa. Having a migraine is the worst – unable to read a book or use the computer – not being able to see straight, fumbling with weak hands… just being incapable of amusing myself.
Perhaps the island is a red herring. Perhaps there are people who get bored because they need to have entertainment fed to them. and there are others who have the gift of occupying their own hands and their own thoughts. Maybe it is the latter kind who migrate to island living. I cannot think of anybody in my social circle that suffers from boredom — but, of course, we are all spinners and knitters! (and sheep-growers, and gardeners, and walkers, and bird-watchers and… you get the drift. Simple pleasures, easily summoned.)
When I was a child, if any of us said that we were bored, our mother would say “Well, find something to do.” I , in my turn, would advise my own children similarly. They would reply, as I never dared “There isn’t anything to do!” and I would despair of them. This was of course once they passed the age where an invitation to join me in the kitchen, or the provision of a pot of glue, paper and scissors would suffice. I taught them to knit. They didn’t hook on. Nor did they ever match my love of a good book.
Me? I always have something to do, and umpteen more things waiting for my attention. Like sending out some random mail. Or dealing with the UFO pile…
I caved in yesterday and cast on the Norby hat. It is progressing well. I feel guilty about the Senneh socks, but have only one pair of hands… and I want that hat!
SpinningGill came to my rescue today and chauffered me to the shops. I paid her in socks. Cashmere ones. The Joshaqans. That’s how grateful I was.