Time to Think

If we would only give, just once, the same amount of reflection to what we want to get out of life that we give to the question of what to do with a two weeks’ vacation, we would be startled at our false standards and the aimless procession of our busy days.
Dorothy Canfield Fisher

I’m currently a bit at a crossroads in my life. I think I now finally have enough information to make a conscious decision about my life. Or rather, I’m beginning to see the stuff below the surface that prevents me from making a conscious decision about my life. It’s the second eye-opening moment I had within the last two years, and … well, while it would be easier if I just “knew” who I am, no matter whether I am deluding myself or not, it is much more satisfying to do it the hard way. Sure, it’s also soul-crunching and scary, but better work your way to something real than getting a nice falsehood with some candyfloss.

Anyway, courtesy of a “you can travel 30 days within Germany with (almost) any train ticket”(*), I spend the last three days in Bremerhaven on vacation. And it was a real vacation. While I did see a couple of things, among others the museum of sea travel [“Schifffahrtsmuseum”] and the Climate House(**), I spend a couple of hours sitting at the Weser (a river) thinking.

Bremerhaven has these nice things at the river:

These light gray pieces (nice concrete/stone constructions) make excellent sitting places.

which allow you to think while having this view:

Okay, the images are kinda rainy and dark. Actually, it was quite warm (and I have a sunburn to prove it).

But whereas I spend some time just sitting in the sun thinking, I also noticed just how hard my thoughts were to pin down. Or rather not my thoughts, but what caused them. I was looking for some answers and my mind just kept on skipping issues. I did notice a few … troubling … things … but … waow, in the end, I ended my vacation one day early and returned home rather than the continue that thought process.

And that might just be the most valuable result of that vacation — I know I am on the right track.

Now I just need to follow that track … no matter where it leads me.


(*) Not for free — second class costs about 300€, first class costs about 400€. I took first class — first because I wanted to try it out, and second, if I use it regularly, I rather take the best I can while I can. It also means that while the decision to pay about 400€ for this ticket might have been wrong, the travels themselves won’t be. And when it comes to traveling, there is a difference between the first and second class in terms of comfort. And while some conductors seem to sneer at this kind of ticket — boy am I going to use it. BTW, funny thing, people seem to think you are rich when you travel first class (even when you wear a T-Shirt with natural — and not designer — holes). Personally, I am not. I made an investment in comfortable travel time, so I can use it on weekends even for day trips. Who cares how long the travel time is — I sit in a very comfortable seat in an air conditioned environment.

(**) The Climate House is suppose to turn you favor of saving energy and protecting the climate. I already was, and still am. But after leaving the house I would have shot a polar bear in the face. I hate emotional reasoning. What bunch of self-righteous condescending shitheads designed this exhibition? A child somewhere in Africa (or who knows where) writing “Help me save the climate” as if this were an issue for this child and as if the climate were a living entity? Really? Seriously, fuck this emotional manipulation. It’s a peripheral route to persuasion that is easy to use but short term in nature. How about instead of trying to freeze time we make sure we can live in the environment of the future, whatever it may be, and stay human? (The funny thing is, I know exactly why I react this way to emotional manipulation and absolutely detest it. Self-knowledge is a funny thing — still have to learn how to deal with it.)