Monthly Archives: June 2001

Letters And Numbers II

The other day I wrote: “…get the flat (apartment) revalued and find out it’s worth shedloads more than I paid for it (at least �20k more in the past five years, I’m hoping. Maybe even thirty)…” Well, today the estate agent phoned me up. And I’m sitting on �70k in equity. Could I keep the glee out of my voice? Could I? Ha! Hello end of movie, bongiorno better agency work and bye bye credit card.

Esto es la casa.

Flame Woman And Life Outside Time

Last week I was travelling with my friend Lucy down in Cornwall (which incidentally is probably closer to the size of Long Island than the comparison I once did with Yorkshire). I was introduced to a couple who both work in television, funnily enough in the same studio complex where I’ve been working in London. However hundreds of people work there and I’ve never met either of them before.

So the woman’s name is Fiamma, the Italian word for ‘flame’ which I think is really beautiful but Lucy thought it was fairly pretentious to give anyone a name like that. So she dubbed her Frogmella. I thought this was ridiculous. Why pull someone you don’t know down just because of their name? Why do people do that? It really bugged me and I said so. So of course Lucy keeps calling her Frogmella in all our subsequent conversations because she now knows it will wind me up and she can have some fun pushing my buttons. I continue to point out how lame she is being and so it goes on. Yes, real life can be just like the internet. Hang on a second…

I digress.

What I was going to say was that Fiamma has been working on a documentary project about lifestyles and was asking some fairly deep questions. Like, “What do you think your life is about? Why are we here?” I said that I’m mainly here to enjoy the experience of living and becoming wiser. And I didn’t really say anything else at the time. Afterwards, though, I thought about it and realised that this answer was too simple. It is almost straight out of Richard Bach’s Illusions and it isn’t the whole truth, although for many years I found it a good enough answer, a good enough belief system to give in response to those sort of questions.

We are here to have fun and learn but often we aren’t doing either. I think the purpose is more to find what it is that we enjoy–to discover what gives us pleasure and seek similar experiences. It’s also about discovering in what ways we can grow. It’s about finding and noticing what experiences most open our minds to learning and joy.

So beyond the basics of eating, drinking, sleeping and procreating, I still think life is in many ways about having fun and gaining knowledge, however it is also more than that. It is often a quest for experience and often those experiences come on us unawares–the timeless ‘now’ moments that stretch into infinity when we are in their midst.

Funny how I can feel that I am in one of those ‘nows’ when it’s happening but only when they are relaxed nows, not creative nows which are so full of activity. Yet in both cases, I can remember those ‘now’ moments so clearly afterwards. Those are my moments of really being alive and the reason why I am here. To exist outside time. And there to touch the soul heart spirit of the universe.

Which reminds me of entering the Maori meeting house in New Zealand. I was told that the tradition is that in that place, time has no meaning. Inside the meeting house everyone exists outside the flow of time. Presumably that allows them to touch the soul heart spirit of the universe too.