writing

Thinking, talking, and telepathy

2 Comments 01 September 2017

A couple of weeks ago (or longer, summers blur into one great berry smoothie in my mind) I met Naomi Alderman, author of The Power, for lunch. I brought a friend who I knew would enjoy the convo. We had lunch in a friendly tapas place, ordering (as usual for me) far too many plates. I fangirled a bit, then settled down and we talked about Naomi’s book, other books, Gal Gadot (she is lovely, apparently), and feminism. I left wishing I could talk more about much. Now I want to be Naomi’s BFF so we can meet again and again and have drinks and talk about the world and all it’s contents.

(As an aside about feminism: I always thought I was a feminist. I was brought up by women who would as easily pick up a hammer and nails as an iron because why wouldn’t they? This matter-of-fact-ness is the heritage in descendants of pioneer women as the women in my family are. And you know, it’s in my genes on the other side too. The Native American slice that gives me an easy tan, those ancestors looked to men and women as equally responsible members of their tribes. Equality is a sort of ‘duh’ statement in my mind. Or so I thought. But now I’m starting to realise there is much more conversation about feminism to have with those around me, both in my private life and public. It exercises my brain in a new direction not yet worked. Anyway, this’ll have to wait for a different post.)

This past weekend and week OH and I have been telepathic. ‘No, it’s been much longer than that,’ he said. He insists we’ve had a connection for a long, long time. It might be true. I like that he believes it. Later, I remembered we needed to decide on tiles for our new bathrooms and before I could say anything, OH said, ‘I was thinking, should we go to Cambridge and have a look at those tiles?’ It’s like that. Our telepathy is the everyday sort, the kind only shared by couples who’ve been together along all the roads, including B road convos like that. There’s a bit of other stuff too: When neither of us played sparkling golf the other day I said ‘perhaps we can only do one thing really well each day’ and I winked at him. He grinned and shouted across the green, ‘I was just thinking that!’ The motorways…in a Porsche ;)

Yoga is a thread running through my thoughts. And it stills my thoughts. I used to do a lot more yoga and now that we’re getting settled into the new house we’re doing more again. Yes, I did say, “we’re”. OH has joined me! We sometimes make cocktails and sit on our terrace in the evening sun and listen to an Indian chill album and I think the music would be a perfect pairing to our yoga. I’ll suggest it next time. Out of the blue I saw on FB an old best friend is now living in Costa Rica (another place on my travel list) running a yoga business. I’m enchanted by her life path and feel the bliss of contentment at seeing one’s friends do well, discovering they have written their stories with a pen from their hearts. It is the most I hope for our children, that they grow up and grow old being beautiful people, audacious enough to love deep and true, and confident enough to do the right thing even when at first it feels like it might suck to do so because the right thing will lead them down the right paths and they will on day look around them and see they’re surrounded by sunlight, warm and nourishing.

I’m also playing more golf. I’m improving my swing thoughts. Yoga answers the ‘how to be still in a chaotic world’ question. Golf answers the ‘Get good at things (besides work, for Pete’s sake)’ question. Yoga is deep satisfaction and energy. Golf is fresh air and focus. They both need still minds.

I love some crackling chaos. I thrive on the swirling wildness that lifts the hairs on the back of my neck when I ride the high waves in a dark sea but I am nourished by the stillness as well. Refuelling, restoring, giving me a chance to clear my head and look all of what’s in front of me like a bird riding thermals high above the earth. I can then fill my lungs with a deep breath of satisfaction before diving into the deep again. Balance.

Golf and yoga give my brain a rest because I am always thinking. Although I love going places with OH, we are usually chatting all the way there and back. (And anyway, if I’m thinking he can hear my thoughts, right? Noisy.) So when I’m on my own, sitting on a train to London, driving to another town to meet a friend, walking the dog, whatever, I think. Sometimes I blast music in the car and I think about writing. I construct scenes and dialogue to match whatever playlist I’ve put on, but often I just think. About? A long, long list of topics from everywhere: Twitter, the BBC, coffee with neighbours, stories about people at OH’s work, a convo with the kids, the other drivers, the stuff I’m researching for my second novel, if reincarnation might actually be real, the book I’m reading, the series final of Game of Thrones (who ISN’T thinking about GoT?)…

I think about recent memories. Like this one:

Summer means more time with my daughter. We’ve done a lot of driving and errands and shopping and dog walking and talking. We talk a lot. A lot a lot.

Driving with my daughter one sunny evening after a rain, we decided to take a side road we’d never been down before. We like to explore. The summer sun angles differently here in the landscape around our new house. A certain slant of light that reveals the souls of trees, enhances the eternal in the ancient buildings.

This little side road led us past a small farm. On one side, old farm buildings in red brick and black beams, on the other a small orchard lit golden by the low sun, the apple trees all about to lift their skirts and spin in the flattering light. And underneath the trees, some windfall apples, red and brown lay like shiny pebbles on the green grass. But what made us slow the car were the chickens. A little flock of red hens pecking and rocking forward and backward scratching, hopping over apples, stopping by the puddles at the roadside to drink. My daughter put her window down and we could hear the soft chatter of the hens, feel the warm fresh, apple scented air lift into the car.

It is said there are still magical places in the world. They catch our attention like spider webs hold the morning dew. We are drawn to them. I am fortunate to live with people who understand the importance of these places. I feel pity for the people who don’t. Perhaps in their next life they’ll learn better…

My daughter and I delighted at the hens and sighed. Our thoughts filled with the sunny evening that would stay forever, making up part of who we are.

Your Comments

2 Comments so far

  1. Koos says:

    Your rich inner life is an inspiration and has prompted me to question how I want to live. Learning how to thrive with emotional sustainability is revolutionary and life saving.
    Our telepathy allows us to share without words and seamlessly mind-chat about the important and the banal. Sometimes I believe that we have already had a specific conversation whereas in reality, it has only taken place in my mind. Clearly, you are totally and utterly *in my head*.

    • I suspect it’s because we’ve done all this before…many times, or lives. You were the first to say FAE those many years ago, after all. As if you knew all along ;)


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