Posts Tagged ‘Solitude’

Progress Report #90: Complete Retreat

September 5, 2013

I’m back from two weeks of almost complete solitude at the Morris Graves Foundation Retreat. During that time I saw no one except for the caretakers. I had no contact with the outside world: no phone, no internet, no mail, no radio, no newspaper, no television. Nothing. Those are the rules of the retreat and I respect them. It was a little tougher than I thought it was going to be, which is not to say it was all that hard. I’ve had a lot of experience with solitude. But it wasn’t a breeze. The important thing is that I had the opportunity to focus on my work. I made some good progress. I’d been faced with a logjam before I left, and I got it all sorted out.

I didn’t hear any news the entire time I was up there, and I found that I didn’t miss it. When Judy picked me up, I asked her if anything heavy was happening or had happened. She told me that Obama is working hard to get approval to attack Syria. I didn’t want to know anything else. I was disgusted. I’ve continued to avoid the news since my return home.

I want to get this book finished. (I’ll write more about the retreat in the future.)

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A Man and His Island

February 8, 2013
Santa Barbara Island

Signal Peak and Sutil Island

I’m back from my week on Santa Barbara Island. It didn’t seem prudent to say this publicly before going, but Judy wasn’t able to come this time, so I spent the entire week completely alone. I was eager to do it, though. I was curious to know how difficult it would be. I didn’t find it difficult at all. While I prefer being there with Judy, I was able to handle the solitude—I enjoyed it—and could have easily stayed a second week. Now I’m back in the big city and having to make the same psychological adjustments I did last time.