17 Feb 2021
If on the 17 mile journey on the way home from work in Lerwick, you realise that you don’t have enough petrol to get to town tomorrow, then you have to continue past home southward to get petrol and along the way you find a place you have never been to before, whereupon you arrive in time to watch the clever dog working the sheep with ease and grace while the unexpected winter sun rests upon your face and the roaring sea is in sight line, then you wander and find the marks of your dreams – where a woman stencilled upon her croft house walls many, many years ago and the pattern is still faintly visible even though the house is open to the elements – and after all the wondering if you made the right decisions to move to an island from a city come to a head because at that very moment you become washed over with a sense of pure contentment whereupon all the uncertainty and current concerns fade away and I know that I made the right choices to get to this very point on earth that I never knew existed and I look over my shoulder at the five year journey I have made to get to this one pure moment of clarity understanding at my own achievement – to live life fully – even if it hurts sometimes.
To look over one’s shoulder to see the journey of risk, decisions, learning, acquired knowledge, tears and joy is to truly come to a resolution – it may be fleeting but these moments are the pure moments that mark out lives. I will never forget it. My life choices have not been easy nor have they always rendered happiness but without doubt, I am trying to fill my life with curiosity.
A similar pure moment happened to me when I lived in China and found, exactly one year to the day of arriving, that I also turned and looked over my shoulder at the journey – that was in 2009. It is here but it happened in a similar situation when I was walking to Tiger Hill and all the stars aligned.