Sunday, February 21

Walking a New Way

I know I'm settling into a place when I walk a different route home. 

I've started exploring a bit more.  By exploring I mean leaving what I know, to look for new things.  This, in terms of building on my relationship with the zone I live in, means that I will decide to turn left instead of right on my way home and try and work out how to get home following the "new" road.  For example, the other day I walked home from the metro station taking a side street that I hadn't walked down before and in doing so I saw that there's a bright yellow, and really rather fetching, building on Corso Buenos Aires (one of the main shopping streets in Milan).  Annoyingly I didn't take a photograph of the building, and the Google Streetview has not updated to include the finishing result of what's behind the scaffolding!


This way of walking, taking new directions, is something I get excited about.  Since moving to my new home I have wanted to explore the area more, the idea of doing so has been there, but the actual act of doing it has taken 3 months to get to.  I think reason for this is echoed in a quote from D. H. Lawrence:
The world fears a new experience more than it fears anything. Because a new experience displaces so many old experiences. . . . The world doesn't fear a new idea. It can pigeon-hole any idea. But it can't pigeon-hole a real new experience.
Sometimes I have the time to take a longer route home, but I don't, the idea is there, but I don't make that into an experience.  Having discovered the quote above I can relate to my decisions not too as being part of fear: fear that I'll take a wrong turn and get really lost, fear that my phone will run out of battery so I'll lose Google Maps and therefore no longer have my trusty Plan B to hand, fear that the new route will take longer and therefore impact whatever plans I may have later in that day.

What I do know is that so many of my experiences thus far in Milan, which I have now been living in for the grand sum of 6 months, have been new, really new.  I have had to displace previous experiences in relation to my relationships and friendships, my career, my sense of self, and everything really, in order to allow for these new experiences to become.  

One thing, however, my creativity pigeon-hole remains reasonably intact.  My ideas about the importance of creativity, and ensuring I keep creativity alive as I plunder on in my world, is reflected in a rather cute letter that one of the blogs I follow wrote about recently.  In fact I encourage you to read this post as your assignment for tonight: