1) Daylight savings time occurs in Europe just like it does in North America, but not necessarily on the same day. Hence the unanticipated time for writing this morning.
2) Although Vienna is gorgeous and overwhelming, I am more of a Prague person than a Vienna person. Maybe it’s that I don’t like the “Wiener” moniker.
3) I do not like Sacher torte, which confirms my ancestry is not Austrian.
4) There is a haunting absence of Jews, but not Jewish history, in these parts.
There comes a time in every vacation when I realize that: a) I’m not going to accomplish many of the experiences I had planned for; and, b) I’m not going to eat many of the traditional foods I had on my list.
Turns out a vacation is a microcosm of life. We try to cram so many things in to the time we have, friendships and families and vacations and a career and maybe even the odd hobby or passion, but at some point we realize we have dreams that we’re not going to be able to realize. I, for example, will never become a master baker despite years of research and trial and even more error.
There are so many ways someone can arrive at this place. Consider injury or the simple fact of aging. As joints get creaky, another triathlon may be out, for example. As kids come on the scene, a Himalayan trek may become significantly more challenging.
And then, to bring it all back to me, as I am prone to doing, I’ve come to realize that, among other things, fatigue would stop me from realizing many of the goals I had set for myself both professionally and personally. My health would impede my seeing plays or going to concerts, it would kibosh my energy for socializing, and it would sometimes make getting through the day a challenge.
But this change in life course hasn’t been all bad. Sometimes I’ve been pleasantly surprised, not simply because I’m still alive, but because I’ve accomplished some unexpected things since I’ve been sick. I’ve started writing for fun rather than work and discovered a new passion.
I’ve made new friends, enriching my life, which amazes me. What kind of odd, i.e., crazy, person out there would want to befriend someone who may die? There are a few willing to take that risk, to my surprise and delight.
This last one’s been more challenging, but I’m finally learning to fill my newfound time since there’s a lot of that, while still seeing clients if the opportunity arises. Every smidgen of work brings me joy these days.
And there’s even something exciting on the horizon: Jelly and I will soon be visiting a setting where she’ll provide comfort to people in need. Thankfully, she’s usually better behaved in a new setting than a familiar one. By the time she has learned the visiting routine, her pulling me down the hall howling with excitement at the nursing home, or hospital, or wherever we’re placed, will hopefully be welcomed and appreciated.