Annabelle and I have been incredibly lucky to be included in the travels of some hugely inspiring young people recently. Some come via our children and others from political searching – using ‘political’ in the sense of questioning, discussing, sharing, lobbying…. rather than the limited Political Party sense.
Recently there has been a common thread in hearing the different approaches many have in seeking depth or breadth…. or moving along this spectrum. In some cases this has meant aiming to have studied widely across a whole area of interest – in others to really engage deeply with one aspect. Often discussion has touched on the pros and cons of settling somewhere and having relatively few very important relationships – or having huge numbers of contacts everywhere (usually through social media) and often all over the world.
Personally, I’ve been incredibly lucky to have found ways to spend enough time in Frome to develop the somewhere, while retaining links and work in the wider world – though the latter half of this balance is fading as I have given it less attention and my past skills become less relevant.
My bedtime reading is Wendell Berry who returned to the land his great great grandparents first settled on, to revel in knowing that land in a deeply personal way, finding joy in simplicity. His pleasure is light years away from the mountains of Christmas presents and their wrapping that are already shuffling towards the landfill and oceans. A mass of stuff briefly touched and quickly forgotten.
My hope is that by developing and tending the relationships we have with these travellers on the Somewhere/Everywhere Spectrum, Annabelle and I can share and provide some solidity in what the Quakers call ‘turbulent times’ …. while we can also feed on the inspiration and new perspectives that their hunting and gathering in the wider world harvests.