I told you that I was trying to entice Aretússa to write down the little stories that she keeps telling us so that I could publish them on my weblog. Well, Aretússa didn’t hesitate long. This morning I found the following in my mailbox. Without further ado, and by way of introducing Aretússa, I give you… Aretússa
When I woke up this morning at my mother’s home by the Cathedral of Agios Minas [in Iraklio], I had a quiet morning coffee watching the dome, remembering how cheerful it was all through my childhood to so often hear the bells tolling. Another festive day was being announced!
As I was in this world of memories the clock of the same church rang, 9.00 am! Another pleasant sound for me coming from the Cathedral…! And it was this morning, only this very morning, so many years later that for the first time in my entire life I realized that the clock’s ringings were related with the Time…!!! They had been ringing the hours, the half hours, the time advancing through the day as normal for years … but hmm… I realized it only today!! What an awareness! All through my childhood and adolescence I had perceived it as another pleasant sound coming from the close-by Church! Of course [in those days] I was going to school, to my french and english private lessons also and of course I was studious,… mainly in matters that captured my personnal interest! Sometimes I did not feel like going but most of the times I was quite happily present without feeling opressed.
After my twenties I started working with Western Europeans and I always felt chased by time, like there was an invisible ghost behind me all the time threatening, pushing, pressing me! My worst enemy! I started postponing things I felt like doing because my work-program was prevalent in my life ”naturally”…, postponing, postponing until my ideas or desires were erased from my memory or emotional system.
I was becoming one with my workrole and the inherent time punctuality, but more and more distant from my biorhythms, my personal needs, my local friends, not to mention deeper or simpler thoughts and human needs.
The best gift in all these years was my free time. I had the deep feeling that I was recapturing physically, mentally, emotionally and as I ‘ve been moving on close to my retirement now, I have this strong hope of catching up with the self I have been separated from all these years and that my retirement will be the best present ever!
You may laugh at my greek notion of time which actually says ”Time either belongs to me or it becomes kind of a stressy chasing obsession”… What am I talking about? How dare I conceive Time in such an ”uneffecient” way?
Well I dare to!
And I’m deeply amused with my realization today of the Church’s clock as “another pleasant sound”, also I’m pleased it retrieved a verse of O. Elytis from my memory which I’ll also gladly share with you:
”Time for us
what we feel like.”
“Let Greenwich ring its own time…!”
Most probably this notion of time is not mine exclusively… Most probably it is also one of the causes for so much dysfunction in our everyday life here and the everyday caricatures we laugh at together… But for this reason I welcomed your proposal to start exchanging experiences and contribute with my own comments as a greek person, believing that, through a better knowing, understanding improves which may bring some decomplication of our over complicated modern life and hopefully more closeness and some solutions.