this too
Wednesday, July 06, 2005
  No middle lasts

“We are forever in the midst of beginnings and arrivals…. We work in the midst of all these beginnings and endings. We coast past the silent blue ambulance lights on the freeway and complete our commute in the midst of dying and loss. Through the seasons we cut sandwiches, chop celery, wipe two-year-old noses, put together formidable business plans, and hold important meetings. All the while, life arrives and departs as we labour.

Most of our days we do not perceive beginnings and endings; births and deaths feel blessedly far away, we find ourselves almost always in the middle of things. Sometimes for years we seem to be nothing but middle. Middle and muddle. Real beginnings and real departures seem a distant memory, and after a long time without the rawness of those firsthand experiences, they become something we are not sure we want anymore, something we want to hold at bay…

The door does open, the footfall turns into a person, the person enters our fragile aloneness. It is a neighbour, a colleague, or a death, come to us at last, no middle lasts.”

David Whyte
Crossing the Unknown Sea: work and the shaping of identity

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Hmm, perhaps not the best choice of photo, as today’s news gives it other connotations. Trying very hard not to repeat the cynical pose in the face of success of London’s bid to host the 2012 Olympics. So much money. Imagine if that was directly invested in renewing London’s shockingly decaying infrastructure for the benefit of the people who live here, rather than our just hoping to benefit from the ‘legacy’ of Olympic redevelopment. Or all the other things you could finance, at home or abroad, with so many Billions. I’d like to be, hope to be convinced that this is a positive thing.

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Something I am unequivocally NOT cynical about:
Happy 70th Birthday to the Dalai Lama!
I wish you well in London, with all the planning, building and executing of the Olympics. I am certain it must not be easy to deal with if you live nearby; but I guess the venues will be spread out over many miles.
What a beautiful post ...and so true.

Thanks for the heads-up about the Dalai Lama!

Beautiful Whyte quote.

Why was I pleased London "got it?" Why do I care?
Hi Jean, I've been enjoying your blog for a little while after "meeting" you at Cassandra's. Thought this is a good time to comment re the Olympics. I identify with your reaction - I feel the same with the 2010 one coming here to Vancouver and Whistler. I think the hotels and tourist industry and building contracters benefit while the taxpayers pay. Property values and rents have gone sky high already. That money could go to so many other necessities!

Take care.
My sympathies.

I lived in Salt Lake for the 2002 Winter fiasco. I must say, it was not as bad as this paranoid feared, but it was never as good as the cockeyed optimists thought it would be either. A lot of local businesses, especially restaurants, suffered. While larger ones, and chains did very well. It was all very weird, but it is survivable.

Good luck, I am afraid you will need it.
Wonderful book by David Whyte. High time I re-read it.

I felt disappointment when I heard about the Olympics. Money doesn't come from nowhere; it'll only be diverted from other needs, and for what - another Millenium Dome? I must be getting old...
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Freelance copy-editor and translator. Keen on language, literature, photography, art, music, buddhist meditation and the countryside.

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