We talked about isolation this long weekend. Peter thinks it's good, sees it as a strength rather than the weakness The Secret Language of Birthdays would have me believe the stars bestowed upon this little Leo. Me? Not so sure. I spent my 20's miserably isolated, exhausted from long days in bookshops and too slow at making plans for weekends to be socially connected. I saw it then as a weakness, one I couldn't claw my way up from. These days I find isolation absolutely necessary for clear creative thinking, and I also have a much richer social life, not full, but balanced, I would say, with the kind of good people I wanted so much twenty years ago. Isn't life interesting?
A few days on my own this week, alone (of human company) in the lush cool of my high-up-on-a-hill garden, an unexpected holiday offered by my boss in December. Frankly, it will do me the world of good right now to spend a few days alone. A friend and I spoke last year about how important it is to get away - from one's spouse, one's friends, the distractions we throw in our paths - and get things done. There are undoubtedly benefits to isolation, but here's what I decided in the car coming back to town this afternoon: I prefer the word solitude. It sits more comfortably, more creatively, and the ability to gain wonder from solitude, that's a true strength.