Shooting the Rapids

It is rumoured we live in a world of increasing separations. Church from State, Romance from commitment. Ambition from common sense. Destroyed by films and television soaps our patience demands it all within ninety minutes , or at least within the next few months. In the middle ages they built cathedrals which took several generations to complete. Time was not the central ingredient then. Building something which would last and was a proper testament to their beliefs was the central tenet; there was no urgency. Cruelty yes. Starvation, certainly, .  They had those too. and we also cling onto those vices. But do we create a clear conscience among the three piece suites by drawing the curtains. Possibly we do, or maybe not

In those few breaths we have on earth we try to find “true north”, but get swayed by rumours and soothsayers who might point in any direction at all to earn a few bucks. Truth is not a concept defined by time or fashion. Only our sense of it is.

With short termism comes anxiety and we enjoy plenty of that. A thousand to a million coaches work to shore up our struggling egos as we seek to make sense of a world vastly more complex, but with a brain of much the same size, as that enjoyed by our ancestor’s when their main problem was herding goats.

And so it seems the more I try to understand the less I know. Now I just try to let go, and recognise that, for whatever the reason, in my brief time on this small world I’m just shooting the rapids, hanging on for dear life, and trying to smile at those who fly off  the same waterfall as I. We talk a lot about “Winners” and “Losers” but I think more about experiences.

In mainstream films the guy gets the girl, the man beats the villain, we discover the promised land, and pulsing toasters invade the White House. In real life, we often window shop at Harrods, but normally buy from Walmarts.  Few choices we make are ideal, and are usually influenced forcibly by circumstance. In real life there may well be more perception and anticipation of events than events themselves. Treasuring what I have and those I know while trying to see more clearly seems more than enough at the moment. Perhaps its a good place to start.


About Peter Wells aka Countingducks

Trying to remember what my future is
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24 Responses to Shooting the Rapids

  1. renxkyoko says:

    Countingducks, are you talking about reality and parallel universe?


  2. I’m never that sure what I’m talking about Ha Ha Ha


  3. Jane Thorne says:

    There is happiness in simplicity and love threaded through all makes sense of reality… 🙂


  4. Cat Forsley says:

    great write – – “I think more about experiences.” …………..that line resonated with me ……………. It’s through experience and simple moments – and little “aha moments ” …… that simplicity -or a path gets revealed . Little by little 🙂


  5. It’s an excellent place to start.


  6. gotham girl says:

    A wonderful place to start! Right there with you!


  7. Lovely ideas here – and this piece reads like following a river, which turns in interesting ways, but always moves forward with purpose. I love: Truth is not a concept defined by time or fashion. Only our sense of it is.


  8. Al says:

    Not only a good place to start, but a good place to stay!


  9. backonmyown says:

    I love the notion of paying attention to experiences rather than categorizing them as winners or losers. That’s a profound thought. As always, you’ve given me something to ponder.


  10. nelle says:

    Yes. We can make our lives simple or complex, and perhaps that ability to choose our gear is a good thing. At different times in our life we need a different speed in all things, from senses to evaluative ability to physical prowess. If we hold channel our experiences, perhaps at some point we reach a point of relative wisdom.


  11. We have become an impatient lot,haven’t we. When I’m miffed that something is taking “too long to download” on my lap top, I remind myself of my days in college when I was taking a computer course. We had to type lines of computer code on cards, bundle the cards, submit them to the computer center and wait 24 hours to get the results. If one card was out of place or one mistake was on one card, we would have to start the 24-hour process again.

    When I think of that, I am grateful that I have a personal computer and wireless internet that downloads anything to me at any speed!

    And that’s just one example of how we expect instantaneous results/information. Yes, we have forgotten the fine art of patience and the pleasure of stillness.


  12. Caroline says:

    Thank you for making me ponder!

    Great piece! And I hope you have great peace too!


  13. A little bit random but your line -‘our patience demands it all within ninety minutes’ – pinged loudly with me. I have to admit there are a lot of classics/movies that I intend on watching – Citizen Kane Lawrence of Arabia are just two…and I have never made it through either of them as I am not used to the action unravelling so slowly!

    I’m not sure what annoys me more – the fact that they seem so drawn out, or the fact that I can’t sit through them!


  14. Lafemmeroar says:

    Life is a waiting game and the events that come are bits of respite before the waiting and anticipating begins once more. I’m trying to enjoy the journey … this perspective is challenging at times, but I really have no choice but to enjoy the journey because I don’t know where it will take me … heaven or hell … ?


  15. Purely.. Kay says:

    You always make me break out into deep thought everytime I read something from your wondeful blog. I always seem to ponder so much lol.


  16. Peter, I am so sorry, I have missed three of your posts!! I will catch up! I was wondering where you had gone so I came to your blog and saw all these posts. What has happened is that I recently had to change my email address because of hacking. So I had to re subscribe to everyone on WP and I seem to have overlooked you!! I am glad I realised and paid you a visit.

    This post is so thought provoking. . I hate the way we have become so “instant” and I include myself in this. Since my diagnosis, I have woken up to quite a lot and I am doing my best to live mindfully. Having said that it is comparatively easy for me to do because I don’t go out to work so I have kind of jumped off the carousel that involves a rushed lifestyle. But you have definitely given me something to keep thinking about.



  17. Shonnie says:

    AMEN … Ducks … Amen. Life is about experiences, and those who we share those moments with. Those moments/experiences define and shape us … make us who we are. Life is about the living. You do have to do the “stuff,” the mundane, but each day … I believe … there is a touch of the divine if we are but willing to see it. 😀 Thanks for sharing such moments in prose.


  18. angelmanna says:

    This sums up what I often think of… so many “connections” that have created what I call the “great divide” from one another. Being here now, enjoying what you have to say and how it leaves me feeling – glad I am not alone – such a great reminder of what we have become and can improve upon. 🙂


  19. ‘We talk a lot about “Winners” and “Losers” but I think more about experiences.’ Yes, that is it! Sometimes it is riding the rapids, others just floating in the stillness. It always heartens me to see so many others, through posts like yours and comments like the ones here, who understand these things. Another lovely reflection, Peter.


  20. Beth says:

    Ducky… the world is a place of instant gratification and entitlement these days. Neither are attractive traits. I find it funny that certain things still take time… like waiting for a baby to arrive. Months and months of anticipation, planning, and waiting. And when the little person finally makes an appearance, it’s a grand occasion worth savoring. Mayhap if people applied this to other areas of life, they’d find more enjoyment. Then again, maybe still being single at 36 has given me perspective, taught me that life is to be treasured and enjoyed no matter what is going on and where it is headed. Smelling the roses, watching the sunsets, cuddling the nieces and nephews, and all of those trappings are worth the time spent waiting for the opportunities. (And proof I’m not an instant gratification kind of girl, I’m just *now* getting caught up on some of my favorite blogs!)


  21. Mick McCoy says:

    The rapids is the place to be, hanging on for dear life much of the time and then, sometimes, throwing your hands in the air and hollering at the improbability that not only are you still alive, you’re damn well enjoying it! Way, way better than paddling around in circles on a windless pond, free of turbulance


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