Everything has been figured out, except how to live. ~ Jean Paul Sartre.
Today, during my lunch break, 7 out of 10 tables were occupied by only one person, eating alone and constantly checking his or her Smartphone.
I was one of them.
What is going on with us…
I had my Smartphone and I was also writing.
I really don’t like having lunch alone, and I don’t think it is because I do not enjoy spending time with myself. I do. But I also love sharing my meals, the food always tastes different. However, quite often now I see the picture of all of us here at the restaurant just “making time” to go back to work, eating whatever it is, losing time…our precious time.
Do we really know how important it is to have time of quality? How important it is to spend our unique time in a meaningful way? The time that it is gone, will never come back. EVER. It is ours, and it appears to me that we have not the slightest idea about it.
In my case, I have a two hours lunch break.
Monday through Friday.
Ñam, Tic, Ñam, Tac.
And this is what I do: I eat at the office (quite fast), I go downstairs and have a coffee, and maybe, if I feel so, I write my thoughts. During all this process I remain physically quiet, but my mind could not be louder, especially when I do something I like to do:
(Creepy? Nooooo! First, I am inconspicuous and second, what I really mean is to observe human behavior in our daily routine. Still, creepy? Bah!… maybe but also bold, hehe).
It seems to me that the quieter I am, the louder my thoughts strike my head.
I think it is so sad to lose tremendous amounts of time the way we do when we know we are doing something that a lot of us do not even…like.
We spend ¾ of our day at work.
This is a lot of our time. A lot of our only life in exchange (yeah, no extra lives here).
Paradoxically, although we know that our time here is limited, I cannot help myself to ascertain whether we are aware that time might be the most important asset we have from the very first moment we are born.
Do you ever think of this fact?
For example, when we are tiny little projects we demand the attention of our parents. A LOT (I know…exhausting, poor things this “so called parents”). What do they do? They dedicate us their TIME. It’s not like they have plenty of it, they are mostly busy working ¾ parts of their day (does it ring a bell?) to maintain their tiny little projects.
Is this a loop? Loop anywhere? Yes it is.
So they miraculously manage to spend time with us: time to love us, to take care of us, to teach us, to play with us, and to “dabadabada”, while working more than half of their day for a paycheck. At this point, a lot of them do not even think whether they like their job or not, they just know they need the money to move on, to survive.
And it makes sense, at this point.
Still, it is so sad…
In the middle of all this, we grow up. And then there’s this pervasive fear of having to find a job that gets under our skin and bones because apparently life is so complicated –hint: competition– that we end up thinking that the same that our parents did for us when we were tiny little projects it is the only way out.
One thing is certain, we have limited time here and we have to decide what to do with it: you can draw, you can talk, you can spend time reading, loving, making friends, making love, baking, playing, buying THINGS, you can get attached to things, you can study, you can do a master’s degree, you can do internships, you can look for a job (and if you’re lucky enough you might find one), you can get obsessed with making a living…and then with your spare time, you eat alone and check your Smartphone. (Oh wait, and you constantly try to find your other half! Of course, HOW wouldn’t you, according to what you have been bombed with your entire life since you were a tiny little project).
So…it comes to this: you find yourself eating alone so you are able to get your paycheck at the end of the month. Bills, rent, gas (diapers someone? Diapers? Diapers?)
Our unique and precious time, in this frantic society (including me, including you), a precious time that we rather spend working for someone else than trying to have a time of quality…is a time that will pass and not come back. The main reason for it (probably): we need to survive somehow in this “effing” society that we live in.
I just checked my Smartphone.
Time to go back.
What is the price we end up paying? Always running, rushing, hurrying, competing and hardly breathing.
I know I enjoy writing this, it is now when my time flies, and it seems to me that is a time of quality. But this alone does not allow me to eat.
Step by step, tiny little project.