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Taking some time out to tune in

Common GroundBill KightGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Bill Kight
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The firewood in the pickup truck needs to be unloaded, and cleaning out the garage was planned for today, but it can all wait. Fall is here, and I’m going to enjoy this fine weather.It’s not that I’m lazy. The work will get done eventually. And though procrastination could be the problem, it’s not really that, either.Deciding to take time for myself seems to be hard for me. Guilt sets in when I’m not busy.But the last few days have been an exception. Drove along a road in the forest until it ended. Started walking down the trail with no destination in mind. Hiked till I got tired then headed back.It’s my firm belief that more down time is needed for us busy Americans.Come to think of it, if those captains of industry would have spent less time playing loose with our money and taken more down time to think about their actions, maybe, just maybe, our economy wouldn’t be in the tank.Putting myself in time-out feels good. Maybe I’ll write some thoughts in my journal, and maybe I won’t.Decided to read a few poems in “Banished Immortal, Visions of Li T’ai-po” translated by Sam Hamill. Picked ’em totally at random. Might even throw in a Gary Snyder poem or two.Out here on the deck I’m the captain, and as soon as I finish this column I’m letting the ship drift with the current. Hard to see this laptop screen but soaking up some sun is more important than going back inside. The squawking magpie could drop dead. Our youngest daughter Amber used to call them “magpirates” when she was little. I’ll try my best to ignore that cussing cousin of a dinosaur.The neighbors are gone. My wife Linn is shopping, and Amber is out of town. It’s just the dog and me. She’s taking it easy, too.Wouldn’t want to do this too often, might become a habit. Why not let the rest of the world go more insane. It’s out of my control so why worry about it?Makes me wonder if those monks in their secluded monasteries might not have it figured out. But I wouldn’t want to call my timeout meditating. That’s too much like work.Resting long enough to tune into God’s creation can make this special time alone spiritual, which is good for the soul. It’s good for the body and mind, too.Time-out is more than zoning out or daydreaming. It’s more deliberate and longer lasting.It’s not killing time. It’s more like using time to let that ever present voice in the mind do its thing. Those thoughts that never shut up are going to go where they want to anyway. So what?Coming back to the so-called real world is not going to be easy. Nothing worth doing is ever easy.Clouds are gathering on the horizon but let the storms of life come. I’m ready for anything.Besides, the doorbell is ringing.After 30 years of working hard, Bill Kight, of Glenwood Springs, shares his timeout with you. His stories appear every other week.


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