Have you ever awakened from a dream, still immersed in that separate reality, feeling as if you’re being torn backwards on the end of an elastic bungee cord, out of one world and into the next, through a cosmic wormhole that has opened in your mind? I have met people who say they don’t dream, I don’t understand that. My life is composed of dreams, so intense and real in every aspect that the characters of each world are posed like actors waiting in the wings for their time on stage while others read their lines center stage in the play called ‘My Life’. Not to dream is not to live. Have you ever wondered which world is imaginary in the first moments of consciousness?
Time, as a concept, troubles me. I don’t wear a watch and don’t own a calendar. I used to have a collection of watches and plastered free bank calendars across the door of my kitchen refrigerator. The mundane chequered squares below the generic postcard pages would be scrawled and inscribed with cryptic reminders of dates and the details of nebulous plans for a future over which I had no control over. The watches and chronographs have been sold at various times without regret as trinkets of salvage that had lost their value and meaning.
My kitchen refrigerator is now plastered with colourful magnetic stickon’s from places and things I have visited since I dumped the concept of time in the bin. I use refrigerator magnets as time portals to periods of past pleasure rather than have tedious calendars dictate my future and remind me that I have no time. Whether my refrigerator has become a de facto ‘Tardis’ is something I’ll have to think about.
Occasionally, I receive a renewal notice for property tax or auto insurance and be drawn back momentarily into the present. I realize then that the time that has passed between ‘here and there’ and ‘then and now’ doesn’t seem possible and feels entirely unrealistic and unlikely. I’ll spend a few moments attempting to organize my vagrant thoughts into a coherent timeline.
There are times when it’s felt impossible to rationalize the time that has been passed through when weighed against the time I have spent doing whatever it is I do to pass the time. My habit of total immersion in the places, people and culture of the places and people that I meet and enjoy while traveling away for extra long periods of time has had the effect of shifting my concept of real time, I tend to live in several worlds at the same time, at least that is what my mind is telling me.
Memories and habits have a tendency to remain ‘sticky’ in both body and mind. Skypeing has become a separate state of being physically in another time zone, while your mind keeps to the rational framework of the part of the world you are in. Can the constant traveler learn to exist in altered times simultaneously without effect? Is this part of what dreams do? Do they truly bridge the gap between what the educated mind cannot comprehend? Being in instant communication with people around the world in real time seems to me to have rendered the concept of time irrelevant and made the concept of time travel more real. Time has become an accounting principle and I am no bean-counter where it comes to living my life.
( to be cont’d)