A Reflection

I moved to Hot Springs Village in 2014, assuming the house we bought would be the last place I would live. But that assumption has since changed; the change manifested itself in the sale of the house my late wife and I bought when we moved here and the purchase of another one in the Village last year. Seven years after moving here, my interest in moving someplace else began in earnest. Certainly, some of the impetus for the desire to move on was attributable to my wife’s death. But her death was not fully responsible for the urge to explore new places and new experiences. I am sure I have written before: I have tended to become dissatisfied with my environment every seven years or so. It is as if I give new circumstances a few years to change me in some fundamental ways; when those changes either have not taken place or have not been the changes I might have desired, I long to try something else. I realize, of course, the place probably is not the root cause of my appetite for something different; more likely, my psyche’s reaction to my circumstances (which includes, of course, where I am) is responsible. “Perhaps,” I might think unconsciously, “a new environment will sufficiently change me to leave me satisfied with who I am.” Of course, a new place—surrounded by new strangers and new acquaintances—will do nothing to change who I am. But I continue to cling to that fantasy. Maybe if I knew who I am and who I want to be, at my core, I would better understand my nomadic desires. In the meantime, I continue to feel the urge to move on. Despite my desire to explore new experiences, I have a few ties to the Village. But none of them hold enough future promise of satisfaction with myself to ensure that I will remain here. My dream of working a few isolated acres of land is dead, killed by my increasing age and decreasing strength and stamina. I say it is “dead,” but that is not true; it is comatose but aware of the impossibility of achieving the dream. Such is life.


Some days I feel like the world would be a better place if skilled arsonists armed with thousands of gallons of gasoline, heavy chains, and impregnable padlocks  would play their trades in “appropriate” places. State houses, haunts of local politicians, and other places where amoral and immoral politically-motivated monsters congregate. But after thinking such sinister thoughts, I reach the unpleasant conclusion that the same kind of parasites would emerge, like a Phoenix, from the ashes. As long as the monsters maintain their tightening grips on the decaying society in which we live, happiness will be unable to overcome the deep, dark, anger that rests in my chest.


I recommend several Spanish-language (with English subtitles) films and series on Netflix: The Substitute, Victim Number 8, Infiesto, Unauthorized Living, and Wrong Side of the Tracks. Apparently, the Netflix algorithm pays heed to the language spoken in programs one rates positively. When watching Scandinavian programs, the service recommended the appropriate Icelandic, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, and Dutch, etc. shows. The same was true with shows in which the characters spoke Hindi; recommendations that followed assumed a deep appreciation for Indian films. Netflix-produced programming seems to rely quite heavily on a relatively limited stable of actors for these foreign language flicks; we have come to know and appreciate several Scandinavian and Spanish actors, especially, based on their frequent appearances in Netflix film products.


Here I am, back at my blog. Late, again. I have not consumed much news this morning. I would rather consume something more palatable and more capable of injecting a little joy into a world that seems to be experiencing a deficit of joy. Yet another fantasy.

Time to crawl into the day, which may involve a drive into HS, an afternoon visit with my doctor, and a period of reflection.


About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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2 Responses to A Reflection

  1. Judy, I think I could get used to a 3-year cycle of relocating!

  2. Judy Johnson says:

    Lucky you have about 7 years in one place. Barb’s cycle has been every 3 years!

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