Thursday, July 04, 2019

A Day Off

I took the day off from work today and went down to the New Forest.  I decided that, for once, I'd actually take advantage of a spell of good weather and take a day out to enjoy the sun.  I'm glad I did.  In order to maximise my time not sitting in a car, I decided not to go all the way to the coast, which, taking into account today's traffic, could have added anything up to an hour to my journey time.  Instead, I opted to take a lengthy walk around the Millybridge enclosure, before a quick trip to Boldrewood.  You know, in those hours I spent in the Forest, I felt more alive than I have for weeks slogging away at work.  Sure, I only do four days a week these days, but I'm so knackered by Thursday evening that I often end up sleeping large parts of Friday away.  Even though work contrived to pile enough stress on in just three days this week, (including forcing a late finish on me on Wednesday, sometimes I think they actively conspire to sabotage my days off), I did manage to crawl out of bed today to try and make the most of my day off. 

Anyway, today's trip confirmed my belief in the restorative powers of nature.  After a few hours exposed to the natural world in all its glory I've been left feeling relaxed and mellow.  The stress has ebbed away along with all my cares and worries - for the time being, at least.  The best ting about the great outdoors is the way in which the pace of everything slows down.  Everything today is too frenetic - everything has to be done yesterday, there's no time to breath, let alone think or just enjoy life.  And that isn't just work - it is the same everywhere: we're constantly being urged to buy things, or watch things, to keep up with whatever we're told is the 'latest thing', to keep abreast of the unsleeping news cycle, which grinds out 'news stories' relentlessly.  But today, none of that mattered, I could just take my time about everything and move at my own pace. Of course, it helped that it was a beautiful sunny day - nature often doesn't seem quite as great when it is pouring with rain and freezing cold.  But today was the sort of Summer day which could only be fully appreciated out of doors, as far from urban working life as possible.  And I've still got tomorrow and the rest of the weekend to go to wind down even more.

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