beauty and experience

As I looked down on my neighbourhood today from a high window, I was charmed by how lovely it was. The ocean an idyll of silver. The hills rich with woods and cosy houses. We live in such a beautiful place, I thought.

But when I went downstairs, outside, I found myself back again in the dreariness. The traffic, the noise and clutter and concrete. Those woods I'd seen had become a few trees clambering desperately over roofs to find some light. The water was hidden by buildings. Although I could remember that the place really was beautiful, encountering that beauty on the ground wasn't possible.

It's an old wisdom : change your perspective to gain a new appreciation of something. But it's also true that some times you have to acknowledge your actual experience. I can not always stand at a high window - and even holding the memory of that view in my heart does not change the traffic and frenzy of rooftops. It's the same when I find a beautiful dress but, upon trying it on, discover it doesn't fit well. I know the beauty exists, but I can't wear it.

I'll always remember that gorgeous view. It absolutely blesses me. But accepting that I don't live inside it - oh sure, literally I do, but not subjectively - helps me to get real about my environment and, at the same time, appreciate the view without regret.


  1. Same here - the front of the house faces the street - a quite busy road and rooftops - the only compensation being the sunrise. At the back of the house is a different matter - wide open fields, trees and hedgerows - a view that I never tire of and appreciate every day. It is the reason we stay here - I would be devastated if the land was sold and built on.

  2. I agree. We live on a teeny tiny island of just about 1 mile. There is a two mile causeway to get out here. The first small city we enter upon leaving is called Lynn and it is not an up and coming community. It's a down and out community. Only a causeway separates us and yet we are worlds apart.

  3. Such a beautiful photo... I know, you are not drawn to the ocean. But I so wish I had it, in my life.

    Wisdom in your words, again...

  4. thank you for your notes, I always so love getting them.