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From The Point:

Entering Winter

Wednesday, Dec. 16 2009 UTC

I guess this is going to become a blog of sorts. The Point has become a bit of a daily practice, of walking and taking pictures, of seeing wildlife, of inhabiting edges. It is a way of starting the morning away from the computer, before doing daily stretches and sitting meditation, a way of clearing the decks before entering the work world.

One’s first experience of the Point is that of traffic noise. Since I moved here I have thought, “this place would be really nice if the traffic would just go away.” A few days ago, though, I realized that this was an interesting point of practice in and of itself: a meditation on choices, both mine, and others’.

The hundreds of drivers who pass by while I do my brief walk have chosen lives which involve driving to work every day. I have chosen a life which involves sitting at home on the computer and on the phone. It is also a life where I join the commuting flock when I visit with clients/collaborators or when I do errands or travel to see family and friends. It is the life we who participate in this civilization have collectively chosen — a life of convenience and climate change, of speed and noise and the paving of cities. The irritation of the traffic noise is a reminder to contemplate these things.

Meanwhile, Winter has arrived, and, with it, snow and some serious wave action. In addition to the usual crows, rats, seagulls, mallards and opossums, we have Canada geese and migratory ducks and other loon-like birds I can’t identify swimming just offshore. A big city it is, but there are reminders of the wilderness that is latent in all terrain. A hunger for those reminders helps pull me out the door each morning, just as the sun starts to shrug off the morning mist.