Time Flies When You’re Moving Slowly

The first thing I did when I arrived on my retreat was to readjust my pace.  I decided that I would be “timeless,” meaning that I had no schedule, no limits on when to do something or how long to do it.  It turns out it takes a bit to adjust from a get-things-done routine to a nothing-but-the-moment routine.

In order to slow myself down, I took my camp chair, my binoculars, and my National Geographic to the edge of my campsite, where two trees provided some lovely shade in a spot overlooking the lake.  There I parked it, just sitting and reading and soaking in the view.  Surprisingly, it worked!

For the rest of the retreat I took my time and went slowly.  One morning I took an apple and a piece of bread (my breakfast) to the nearby fishing pier and just watched the little fish come up to eat bugs off the surface of the water.  I would sit and write, and suddenly two hours would have passed.  I hiked right through “lunchtime” one day, just letting the trails lead me, going from one to another, until I decided I was done hiking.

Walking was the one thing I couldn’t slow.  I kept trying to remind myself to “mosey,” just wander and soak it in, but when my feet started going my brain did, too, so my pace was close to my typical speed.  It didn’t matter in the end, though; the journey was the goal and the hiking loosened my creativity.

I really enjoyed the slow pace, as well as the lack of schedules and plans.  I don’t think I could keep it up indefinitely – towards the end I started getting a little antsy – but it was definitely what I needed right now.