Earlier this year, I had a strange, and very strong, desire for everyone in the world to disappear. I didn't want the apocalypse or anything like that - I wasn't craving nuclear war, or some massive natural disaster, or a zombie infestation... nothing violent or crazy... I just imagined that all the people in the world would just *poof* disappear. Simple.
And then there would be me. Alone. Meandering the streets of Cambridge, Somerville, Boston... sitting in empty bars, walking through apartments, taking in the quiet simplicity of a world without humans. No work, no responsibilities - nowhere to be, nothing to do, no one looking at me. Like I said... simple.
That image may seem super dark and depressing to some people. And maybe it is. But to me it sounded (sounds) beautiful. Life can be exhausting - wouldn't it be amazing to just push pause for a moment and simply walk through a quiet world?
"Well, Mally, why don't you just go out and spend some time in nature away from the city?"
Yea, I could do that. I do do that. I love doing that.
But thats not what my fantasy is.
My fantasy is an empty city. A city so still - the only sound is made by my solitary footsteps and the wind rustling old newspapers. A city so quiet - there's no buzzing of computers, no clicking of keyboards, no thumbs whirring on phones. Wouldn't that just be incredible?
I sat down to write this blog a little before midnight. I had zero plans for an art project. I read the blessing last Monday and fell in love with it... given the fact that I'm about to spend the better part of the next 3+ months traveling alone, solitude has definitely been on my mind lately. But despite my love for O'Donahue's words this week, I hadn't felt even a hint of a creative spark. I think this was the least prepared I've been for a blog post yet. It wasn't just that I was running late - I was late and completely out of gas!
But I think maybe the problem was that I just hadn't given myself enough time or space to allow a spark to happen, because almost instantly after I read the blessing again and placed my hands on the keyboard, I remembered my fantasy of an empty city... and the spark sparked.
I somehow had to make that fantasy real. Or at least make it feel real.
There was no way I was going be able to do it alone. So I called in back up. A project like this calls for the impromptu, spontaneous aweomeness of one person, and one person only... Jamiestar to the rescue!
I explained my fantasy to her... Jamie listened intently. We traded ideas. Jamie picked out my wardrobe. We giggled a bunch. We drove aimlessly for a bit. I contemplated jumping around barefoot in a giant (freezing cold) puddle in the street... then thought better of it.
Eventually we found ourselves on the bike path near Alewife, and here's what we ended up with...
Jamie took a whole bunch of photographs, but these two were our favorites.
Thanks for being up for a strange and rather frigid photographic adventure in the middle of the night, Jamie <3
I could probably talk a whole lot more about my choices regarding solitude... things have been a bit confusing in that regard lately. But instead, for now, I'm just going to live out the rest of my night in my fantasy world that Jamie helped make a reality tonight. .... "May you realize that you are never alone, that your soul in its brightness and belonging connects you intimately with the rhythm of the universe."