Since the announcement by WHO on March 11th, that we were in a Global Pandemic, our world has changed beyond anything we could have ever imagined. During the last two weeks, in our own life, there have been various “life events” that would have rallied us to action —-attending a wedding, visiting the sick and being with family recovering from surgery, teaching bridge classes, celebrating with friends on their new home and spending time engaging with our grandchildren and friends.
When I opened the blinds this morning and saw the beautiful day ahead, I suddenly remembered that “the key to successful aging is to learn something new” so why not change those words a bit to —“the key to successful self-isolation is to learn something new.”
Chapter Two, “The Man in the Trees” in “Cosmic Door” has a poem by T.H White entitled Subject: Merlin on Aging, here is an excerpt:
“The best thing for being sad, replied Merlin is to learn something. That’s the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world around you devastated by evil lunatics or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then——to learn……that is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.—”
January, 2017, the week I started writing, I snapped this photo to show my daughter, the new artwork I had just purchased — and lo and behold, Merlin showed up directly below — some of the birch trees are lined up — there are no coincidences!!