I just got back to Brooklyn after three weeks overseas — two of them on business — and I have to say, it’s great to be back on my home turf.
On my last day of travels, I wound up sitting alone at breakfast, no longer needing to meet and talk over the day’s activities, what we were going to shoot and not. The pressure was off, we were finally going home. It was bliss.
I had coffee alone and turned my cell phone upside down. I didn’t want to be interrupted by calls and emails and instant messages. I just wanted to enjoy a cup of coffee and look around. I watched the couples nearby, how some talked to each other, how some sat in silence and, best of all to my mind, how some made each other laugh.
And then I went for a walk. And I mean for a walk. I left my cell phone in my room, purposely did not take my iPod and set out to just empty my head, to not think. Not thinking….what a concept. In this modern age, I sometimes feel bombarded by images and talk, talk, talk — way too much talk.
People who know me know that I do not like people I call “long talkers.” You know who you are. There’s no need to fill every silence with blather. I almost never call these people back even when they leave me messages. It’s just too much. I need my silence for the sake of my brain as much as I need all that information. Information is nice but so is nothingness. How else to think and be creative. And here I must quote one of my favorite lines from any song ever written. It’s “Tomorrow Never Knows” by The Beatles. John Lennon wrote it and the opening verse is just so dead on:
Turn off your mind relax and float down stream
It is not dying, it is not dying
Lay down all thoughts, surrender to the void,
It is shining, it is shining.
Embrace silence. Empty your head from time to time.