The kernel of an idea often develops serendipitously.
I can trace this particular idea back to the day that a friend and I became Tree-Riders. We would climb a tree — one of many alders in a thick copse — and our brothers would chop it down. In theory, the tree wouldn’t actually fall; rather, it would be ushered to the ground by the branches of surrounding trees. As the tree descended, we — the Tree-Riders — shimmied around the trunk to get to the ‘safe’ side for protection from whipping branches; and, I suppose, the forest floor.
On one occasion, the branch my friend was sitting on broke: he fell to the next branch down, which also broke; and so on, until he was dumped, unceremoniously, onto the ground. It was a comical sight (maybe not so much to him).
My pondering mind — often in neutral — had taken note: he hadn’t fallen to the ground from high up in a tree; rather, he had suffered through several episodes. Each time he landed on a new branch, time (or at least the time spent falling) had stopped, and then the next descent occurred.
I extrapolated this concept: while riding a tree to the ground we followed the same nature of events, only in a seemingly more contiguous manner. The episodes blended together; but, surely, there were several distinct instants that were indivisible; moments when time stood still while the universe decided what would happen next. Even if I fell to the ground without touching anything, I reasoned, it would be nothing more than a series of episodes (no doubt punctuated with a drastic finale).
As the tree twisted toward the ground, and branches and leaves cracked and whispered, and the wind shrieked past my ears, I thought of these episodes — each fractionated moment of time — as discrete acts of ‘almost falling’.
I haven’t seen that particular friend in decades, and the copse of alders has since been consumed by a burgeoning suburbia, but the reminiscences, and episodes of almost falling, have been my lifelong companions.
This Blog is about those moments; when time seems to pause, and a glimmer of the vision behind my normal reality shines through. And if anything else interesting happens by (e.g.: an interesting book), I’ll share that as well. My goal is to post at least a couple of times a week.