Sunday, January 24, 2010

After the people are gone, the land remains

We (at least one of us) have been traveling the past couple of weeks. Traveling always makes us feel especially absurd, as it pulls you out of your normal routines. This forces a certain different perspective.

Things that normally seem important to you when you are at home melt away in your new place. And no one knows who you are either, allowing you to sort of submerge your ego, or drop the curtains of your normal pretenses that you cherish so much back home.

In this case, we find ourselves in New Zealand, very far from home. It is a beautiful country of almost surreal landscapes… misty mountains and glacier-capped peaks, deep green valleys and rainforests, meandering rivers and alpine lakes of all shades of blue.

Stunning vistas like this always bring out the absurd, because it makes humanity seem so small. There is a Maori saying that says, “after the people are gone the land remains.” We saw it on a wooden sign nailed to a post on a dock. It is true. It is hard, we think, to maintain a viewpoint that puts humanity at the center of the universe in the face of such awesome beauty and such powerful natural forces that don’t care a whit about what we do or think.

We were feeling so absurd, we thought to post several times but couldn’t bring ourselves physically to the computer. We were so wrapped up in the moment, just taking it all in. But we worried not – nothing matters, after all, including this blog.

We write because it is a pleasure and because writing always helps to clarify and organize one’s thinking. And we’ve learned some things and gone down some alleys as result of writing this blog that we may not have gone down otherwise.

In any event, this explains our relative absence from the blog, but we promise to return and share our absurd thoughts on our return. We’ve scribbled some notes on napkins and hotel pads and on the back of receipts. More to come…


  1. Let us be ourselves,
    for the time is short.
    Who are we you ask
    We eat - We work;
    We sleep - We dream;
    We love - we love.
    And none of it matters.
    Is it fun?