Thursday, October 23, 2014

Doing Something When I Needed to Do Nothing

Boy, have I had an interesting week. As in the purported Chinese curse: "May you live in interesting times".

I am in France, teaching for two weekends in a row. In between, this week, I am out at a student/friend's lovely home near the forest of Fontainebleu. A beautiful, peaceful village; quiet, quirky home. I had mixed agendas - will I spend time working or resting or both? - but this is typical for me and I settled in after a few hours on the first day,

Tuesday. A nice walk in the forest, some good planning for my upcoming program on Shambhala Online called Write Now... Looking good.

Back in the flat, I diddled with some video on my phone,  trying to get talks uploaded and such onto my laptop. Learning Word Press in a new way, I was a bit frustrated, but moving ahead. In a moment of great efficiency, I emptied the trash on my desktop without realizing I'd somehow, accidentally (now I see it as ironically) put my most current folder, with above-mentioned materials for the upcomig class, etc, in the trash prior.

The folder's name? TO DO.

As I watched the trash empty much more than the single video I thought occupied it, I scanned my desktop, which I keep pretty clean. The gap, the missing folder, was immediately apparent.

It hit me right away but in waves. When I have done this at home (not often, but it has happened) it's no biggie since we back up regularly with time machine. But I've been in Europe for over three weeks and haven't backed up. I've done hard work on some essential projects, now gone. Hundreds of photos, good ones, of and on this trip, not backed up.

Deleting and emptying this folder was a small but reperable mistake, though I didn't know that then.
Here was the real mistake: I felt strongly that I had to DO SOMETHING.
THAT was my mistake, and I did it again and again over 24 hour period.

It was hell.
But to be clear, it was hell mostly because of how I handled it.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Slow Growth

Yesterday, taking the dogs for a walk, my friend-family the Hurns and I encountered some very old growth oak trees. Jubilee Park used to be a location for anti-aircraft machinery in WWII. Now it is a wildlife preserve. Despite the great clearing that occurred in preparation for its defensive purposes, oak trees kept their hold in some places, so now these heritage woods patches can frolic free in the windy plain.

The night before, the BBC reported that trees like these are in trouble in Britain. If you place any population on an island like this - and yes, it is an island - once contamination hits, it spreads like proverbial wildfire. In fact, an algae or fungus - I've forgotten which - has begun to spread, taking out these trees from the bark side in. It turns out the cure is garlic - concentrated, pumped under the outside edges, the garlic is an anti-fungal. However, some argue, just like antibiotics in our system, these anti-fungals wipe out all fungus, including good, useful fungus needed for other thriving. So it's a quick - but strangely expensive - cure. As is often the case with fast solutions, perhaps more trouble than it is benefit.