An Excerpt from Jim Conrad's
NATURALIST NEWSLETTER
of August 22, 2010
Issued from Hacienda Chichen Resort adjoining
Chichén Itzá Ruin in Yucatán, Mexico

RAINED-ON HUT

This week the rains returned, so on most evenings raindrops pattered on the hut's thatched roof as I lay inside the darkened mosquito net, listening. Inside the mosquito net, that's when I digest the day's happenings.

For example, this week I've thought about the North American who'd passed through pretty unhappy about having to return home after being awhile in the Yucatán -- about having to return to the job, back to the house with all its maintenance and yard mowing, and, as much as anything, back to friends and family who haven't a clue about how one can live happily in ways other than gringo ways.

The Northerner seemed especially worried about this: That often people in the Northern culture obsessively work their whole lives "planning for old age," but either die before they get old, or reach old age so wrecked or burned out that they can't enjoy what they've worked so hard to have. Or maybe what they've prepared for themselves no longer pleases, or no longer seems necessary..

We ended our cogitations on the matter by concluding that, once again, it's the Middle Path one must tread. Prepare for the future somewhat, but struggle every day for time to do things you really want to do, things you're good at, the kind of work that really fulfills you. This all sounded so self-evident that it felt awkward saying it, especially at the end of a long discussion on life-in-general. However, the visitor said that so few people really practice the idea that maybe it needed to be articulated more frequently, needed to be repeated in everyday life among everyday people.

The visitor left asking this question: Which is closer to the Middle Path: The way things are done up North, or down here in Maya territory?

I laughed, figuring the visitor already had an opinion on that. I was pooped from the day's tasks so I just got inside my mosquito net, and listened to the rain. Facebook Icon.