Natural health, beauty and fashion

The Productive Art of Doing Nothing

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This year my schedule for the summer was outrageous. It was empty. Not a single festival jotted
down, not one trip to the sea dog-earing a week-end… Nothing.

Nature hates a void, they say. Leave a space empty, and it will be filled. Festivals came to me
instead : one was a private, tribal affair. Friends of friends, invitation-only, interview-based. It felt
like walking right into a gathering of your one hundred best friends you haven’t met yet. The music
was heavenly, the company exquisite, and dare I mention the food, the forest, the drug-free high of
brotherly love around a campfire. It was probably the best festival I’ve ever been to. The next one I
have lined up is, quite literally, a gathering of goddesses.

My point is, to quote a friend, “You couldn’t make this shit up”. My imagination had not stretched to
picture such delights. The cunning plan of the spiderweb worked though – I got ready to wait. Then
I did. And life stumbled right into me.

I have developed quite a gift at waiting, casually poised, ready for life to toss surprises my way.
Cats have a natural knack at this : marble-still for hours, eyes closed – and ears twitching at the
slightest sound. I generously spice up my week with dashes and splashes of Nothing – knowing it
won’t last.

As singer Ayla Nereo put it : all you have to do is show the Muses you’re available. Pen in hand,
and eager to take notes. They will notice. They will keep sending you stuff. Picture waiting with an
open mouth in front of someone with a fistful of popcorn… Sooner or later they will throw some.
Who could resist? Could you?

You may believe I am napping under an apple tree. You would be wrong. I am hard at work,
making myself available for life to come play – like Newton. Like Buddha.

“Go on, surprise me! Oh, I loved that! Surprise me again!”

In the last two months, this is what I have harvested from time spent doing nothing :

– listen to alien songs that translate Venus into sound
– making gorgeous art
– getting collateral sound-healing with cristal bowls and a lute-chair
– receiving a new name
– watch African egrets, who have settled in English swamps
– found gifts for the gods left under bushes
– a midnight hang-drum concert in a stranger’s van
– giving a slightly illegal back-alley tour of sacred sites
– having an improvised meeting with three women to discuss the anus
– healing life-long trauma while giving a foot massage
– becoming aware that sheep are very loud, after shearing and on a full moon
– realizing that watching sunsets and sunrises greatly improves my happiness
– watching the sunset every night for two months
– learning that raw chocolate is absurdly easy to make – and that too much will make you sick
– epiphanies leading to changing my profession
– “Ripe blackberries? in July?”
– being the most happy I’ve ever been

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