Sunday, February 13, 2011

Time to Ride

I only had four hours to ride today, but made the most of my time. I rode a common route, through Kinglake to Yea, then up toward Seymour and down to Strath Creek, on to Broadford, Whittlesea and Hurstbridge. I had to be back early to watch a movie at a friend’s house: the 1990 film I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle.

Making the most of my time meant riding most of the time and loving it. I stopped beyond Strath Creek for photos.

It seems that time was a theme today. Riding along the fast winding road from Yea to Seymour I thought how a ride is like life. Soon the ride will be over and I will be looking back on it, just as I might do when I've reached the Autumn of my life. In the moment, in the events, there is no structure or narrative, but looking back I will see it as a meaningful whole. Realising this fact while in motion, mid-ride, creates an opportunity to become present with the now, rather than being lost in some distraction. But then something else happens: I also feel a certain angst, a desire to grasp at the now,  so that I can hold and treasure it. Which of course I can’t do – every moment slips through my fingers. Some part of me longs to grasp and hold this current riding experience. It is as though that part assumes that this experience and the time it is in are separate, such that I can stop time from coming and taking the experience away. But of course the moment is made of time. Time is internal to what it is, it's very substance is time. And this is true of life also: we are beings in and through time. What we are is time-made, and to stop the time is to stop us. So here is a paradox: that there is something legitimate in my desire to hold this moment and stop it slipping away, just as there is regarding my life and the people that I love, and yet what is there in front of me, whether it be this ride, my life, or my friends, is timely, beings-in-time, made of time. Get rid of the time that steals them and you get rid of them.

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