Like Tom’s class hamster on his wheel, it’s easy to start the autumn term at a furious sprint. With endless lists, appointments, and jobs to catch up on. Time can feel precious and squandered all at once. It’s easy to try to cram every minute with what I ‘should’ be doing.
I stopped by the roadside on my way to a meeting yesterday -just to wolf down a sandwich whilst replying to emails on my phone. After a short while the small-scale wildlife of the country lane adjusted to my presence and started going about its business with ever-increasing chatter. I heard the clicks of an animal poking through the undergrowth, the soft flurry of wings behind the hedge, a splash in a puddle, and the call of birds I wish I could name.
Just two minutes off the motorway, just five minutes of quiet, and all of this came creeping out to remind me of a different pace to the day: no clock-watching, schedule shuffling, or ‘asap’ing.
I’ve always been amazed by how quickly a breath of nature can calm me down. The quick arrest of the scent of eucalyptus, or the wind in an evergreen; it grounds me. I mustn’t waste my time rushing around, when all I need is right here in this one spot.