Squaring Circles

It’s rarely as bad as it looks. Today looked unappealing – windy and overcast, although at least not the grim uniform grey of the other day. And it was windy and it did spit with rain on and off over the 90 minutes I was out, but it wasn’t that unenjoyable.

A mixed cloud sky

Well, at least it’s not a dull grey day

Nowhere’s looking good at the moment – Sonning, Wargrave, Remenham, Henley – they’re all suffering from what you could call a winter tattiness. Few things look good, either in nature or man made, around this time. Very depressingly, the lack of dense vegetation – for instance on roadsides – means all the litter and junk discarded by so many people is all too visible.

That’s depressing on more than one level. The fact of and sight of the rubbish is bad. That I’m sharing this area with some many people willing to just foul-up the place is bad. That there are so many people so stupid that they’ll shit in their own nests is bad. (Because this has to rubbish being slung by locals who’ll then see what they’ve done next time they pass it; I can’t believe there are that many people just passing through.)

That I’d be happier if it had the fig-leaf of thick vegetation to hide it isn’t a good reflection on me.

I don’t know if it’s possible to go through life staring reality in the eye. I don’t know if fig leaves and ‘white lies’ and all those other constructs we surround ourselves with, to soften reality, are necessary for sanity’s sake. Perhaps they are.

Perhaps, instead, we’ve accepted them but in reality we’d be better off not living with the unstated but ever present conflicts that way of living engenders, the tension of always having to square the circle between what we’re pretending to be the case and what, deep down, we know.