Tuesday, 11 December 2012
I've had this postcard on my noticeboard for years now (in colour, though - I can't get the scanner to play nicely at all tonight). And as I'm celebrating a birthday, I got it down and looked at it and thought about how its meaning has changed for me over the years.
The other night I mentioned to Mr Coffee that I had less blog comments these days than I once did. (I think this is true for a lot of blogs - certainly it's not something that's keeping me awake at night. I read blogs, and then get distracted by the postman or the kettle or the need to actually leave for work, and never get around to commenting either.) Blogging has altered a lot since I ploughed in, five-and-a-bit years ago: as the mighty Fluid Pudding said this week, "You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a mom blogger". I was lucky to join at a time when the world was a bit easier to navigate - when you could find a pocket of kindred souls without too much of an online trek.
"The thing is," said Mr Coffee, "Since you started blogging you've got good at things. You used to blog about failing, and people would come and laugh."
(I can assure you, in case you had begun to doubt, that failure and I are still firm friends?)
What I realise as I look at that postcard is that the life that you plan at 18 or 21 is a linear one - it has a very clear path which leads inevitably upwards. It doesn't do slapdash. It is all ambition, all getting really good at things.
Turns out that the path - at least, mine - is twisty. It has sudden oubliettes, which can be fallen into at a moment's notice, which may or may not be very enjoyable but eventually have to be escaped. It has no obvious destination. It's slipshod, and half-arsed, and it's a lot more about today than what happens in the distant future.
This year, I started making a couple of quilts and learning an instrument. Who knows what I'll do next year? Who knows if I'll ever be really good at anything? I'm drawing no conclusions. I'm happy.