I walk through a nostalgic landscape; dung heaps in the villages and kilometres long forests. It looks like Limburg on the Dutch side, this close to the border. The border is man-made, unnatural. Yet the landscape has developed a bit differently. Larger scale, fewer people.
You will have noticed, I have been struggling the last couple of days. Since I wandered into Germany actually but I wonder whether that is the reason.
Yesterday I crossed again to the Dutch side, in search of a ccamping site. Strange how that works for me. Scale and structure are immediately recognized and feel reassuring. Like a home coming. Maybe it is the scale. Everything is enlarged and demanding different things.
Peter already said it; I alone decide whether to ‘cheat’. There will be no disappointment when I cheat or even quit. No one is asking this of me.
So I alone decide what to do next. I can quit, because torturing myself with this walk is unneccesary. But what if this is only temporary? What if the day after tomorrow turns out to be really magnificent?
Or should I go on because I planned and organised it. But what if a month from now I say: I wish I had quit then?
How do you know these things? Is ‘pulling through’ something you learned at home or is it yours from the start? Is giving up a flaw of character or a sign of realism? How do you know that when you don’t know, don’t recognise it from yourself? Does it have to hurt so much that you think: this can’t be what they meant by it. What if you get used to the hurting?
How many times do you have to bang your head against the wall before you ‘get it’. And what is it you ‘get’ then? And if you are very good at walking, how long can you walk before you ‘get it’? Maybe never?
How dó you know what’s good for you? Even more so because of our embeddedness in personal and social structures. Does this walk present a unique possibility to me to explore this without those structures? It doesn’t feel that way…
Maybe it helps if you can choose between love and fear.