Living in hiatus, no idea when the housemate’s test results will be made available. In an existential sense we all live with uncertainty all the time, I know that and I have lived with delays and frustrations and long periods of uncertainty before. So it is really just about waiting. And then waiting some more.
Writing too is so often about waiting for things to come together. From an email to a friend:
I often get too impatient with the process of writing and give up too easily, fall back on what I already know how to do — and writing takes so much time, it can’t be rushed or forced. Only by writing do I find the limitations to what I am able to do, and what needs to be understood more deeply, written differently. It infuriates me that I spend days or even weeks mulling over things but that too is necessary, that kind of reflective downtime in which I write very little but allow something to coalesce inside me.
And you are right about distractions – at this time of year there is always something new happening in the garden or up in the mountains, orchards coming into blossom, the flame trees just starting to bloom, swallows coming back from Europe. And myself tethered to a writing desk!
Leonard is subtle, grownup. (That bank robber is a very nice man.) Lovers do not walk off into the sunset. They just say, “Well, maybe.” The sex between them is usually unsentimental, and in many cases the woman makes the first move. The women are interesting people, sometimes actually heroic, even standing there in their underpants. These crime novels about felons and schmos are actually uplifting.
Out here in our more urbanised and cosmopolitan Africa, doses of the hallucinogens ayahuasca and ibogaine are the new legal way to do rehab. This 2003 account of a supposedly mind-altering trip on ibogaine’s nightmare therapy reminds me of the kinds of loopy shamanistic dreams I have about three times a week with no noticeable moral improvement.
As so often these days, I pondered on the terrible state of the world – wars and terrors and environmental ruin. I saw sheets of radioactive flame devouring cities, huge crowds reduced to cinders. I asked Mr Iboga if this was going to be the tragic fate of humanity. The answer I received was startling – and reassuring: “Everything is safe in God’s hands!”
Overnight sobriety? Could it be we’re all a little too impatient about this kind of stuff?