I’m cleaning the cat’s litter box trying to hold my breath because the air is so thick you can carve it with a knife. At that moment I was thinking what is this little hairball good for? She eats, takes a shit, sleeps and plays a little bit of hockey with toy mice. And the noise she makes, that’s horrifying. Especially in the mornings when the first thing in your mind is to get the coffee on so you could get your other eyelid up as well.
And I really started thinking, what’s she good for? Nothing much really but I’ve learned some valuable lessons anyway. A) Patience. I’ve seen her wait on her hunting journeys around the living room that she really has the poker face to call the cards. A fly is pissing her off, flying around her nose, head and ears and she just keeps still. It seems that she knows that after the first try her odds go down immediately as the fly will be wary. She waits until she is almost totally certain that she can make the kill. And after that it’s just a little bit more, just to make sure. And then, go! Full speed ahead and no looking back or watching out for vases because she’s in it for good now. It’s all or nothing.
I really can’t even count the times I’ve used this tactic to my advantage in projects. I’ve just waited out all the fuzz and useless todos to get a little bit of certainty. And all those times it has paid off. Just a little bit of patience goes a long way. I’ve saved money and nerves with this tactic. But don’t wait too long because the opportunity might just pass by (this is actually a sub-point of a).
B) I’ve learned to really enjoy myself. Not only when I’ve accomplished something but as an extempore act. I don’t have to get something done or have had a really hard day to enjoy myself, I am here to enjoy. The more I enjoy, the more I get out of life. A little bit of sunshine goes a long way.
C) This is by far the most important lesson. To get things done I need sleep and rest. At least 8-9 hours a day. I have repeatedly proved that more than two consecutive days with less than 8 hours of sleep will backfire. That’s my limit, 2 days. For her, it’s of course 18-22 hours a day. But she knows it and respects it. Respect your brain, it needs the rest. The body can take a lot more but try and stay awake 48 hours. Then go do some math problems and tell me how it went.
D) And then almost as important as the previous one: to survive in life you need tenderness and affection. Lots of it. This is also why you need to tell your loved ones that you love them. When everything is just perfect and it seems that nothing could be better and then someone close to you gives you a heartily hug – then you know you got it all.
Anyway, I’m still holding my breath but now I’m glad she’s in our household.
Related posts: Why are people deadTweet
Just after one of those times I was broke, out of work and otherwise miserable I somehow managed to get a job in a factory that specialized in making roller cages.
Because it was out of my usual habitat and I would have spent all the wages on commuting, I had to stay in a house with 11 other people. It was barracks for working men. All honest old working men over the age of 30. That age doesn’t seem so old anymore but for an 18-year-old-punk they were ancient.
They were all family men, some of them drank a lot of booze but generally enjoyed themselves. I couldn’t do that in that kind of environment. It was too weird. Besides, I had my laptop, my nerdy books and what more do you need?
During that short of period of my life (around a month or so) I began to get a grasp of an aspect I couldn’t do without anymore. I’m home. Wherever I am, it’s my home. Big thanks to those guys whose names I don’t even recall. I just remember a couple of faces.
When in a hotel, hostel, visiting acquaintances or friends, it’s always my home. When I have people over, I wish they felt like home. It makes everything a bit more relaxed. I’ve also worked out a pretty much unbeatable overnight (scalable) packing list but that’s for another post.
Feeling home is a mental game. When you feel like home anywhere, you’ll be relaxed and you can be a lot more productive and creative (see Why are people dead?). When traveling, you don’t know the neighborhood, the people or anything. When you feel like home, everything seems closer and easier. Some way people sense it and they are even kinder to you.
Money and jobs come and go but these kinds of lessons stick. And you never know where they pop their head up.Tweet