Of ships and harbours

In spite of the strong opinions and the somewhat gloomy aspect of some of the last few entries, I usually somehow avoid expressing more intimate feelings, with truly fatalistic posts being rather the exception here - only a few have popped up over the last few years, the cryptic Deja Vi in late 2007, I guess, or the train post from 2008. Curiously, while the situation now may be such that the expression of my feelings is called for, it should not be in an overly dark context, however I may be saddened by the way the matter has taken its course.

"A ship is in harbour safe, but that's not what ships are built for", a citation my sister Monica has been quoting ever since she moved back to Germany some 7 or 8 years ago. I posted this exact same thought here just as I was boarding, back in 2008; arriving in Waterloo, a few months back, I got a postcard from her reminding me, once again, of this saying. Ever since I recognized myself to be who I am, I've been making it a point of taking myself out of the comfort zone - after all, that's not what I'm here for. And now, having fallen in love as I hadn't in a very long time, I found myself noting just how such could be taken to be the ultimate test for the quote, as I considered dropping everything from my sport, my countries or my Ph.D. to be with the one person who, to date, best described what people call a soulmate.

And yet it was not to be, not now. Maybe because the other person had already found her safe harbour, maybe for other reasons which shall be entirely mysterious to me, but it shouldn't matter. It saddened me, deeply, and I walked away with a bitter taste. And yet, I was reminded just how the simple occurrence of such feelings was, is a fantastic thing by itself. To have those feelings, of being truly alive, of liking someone so much, no matter the implications or complications, gave a whole new meaning to the idea of taking my ship far out of the harbour, of venturing into wholly uncharted waters - and I shall hold dearly to the new ideas and values I've considered over these past few weeks as a measure, a standard for my future sailings.
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The original title was "Of ships and harbours, isomorphisms and fancy new carbon wheels", but I figure the Choi-Jamiolkowski isomorphism or the Krauss operator-sum representation of Gaussian maps shouldn't, however they helped me get through the latter days by providing something distant and abstract to think about, warrant any thoughts here. Questions of science, science and progress, do not speak as loud as my heart. Now, about those carbon wheels... Well. I take part in the hardest sport in the world. Damn, running a marathon is something I would do as part of my off-season. And cycling has shaped so much of who I am, that I feel justified in rewarding myself with some non-plus-ultra tools of the trade, specially when I need a little cheering-up. So, like I did after previous heart breakings, I went out on a small shopping spree for new carbon wheels and time-trial handlebars for the upcoming season. The difference between men and boys is the price of their toys...
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I may not buy a boat just yet, but I'm eager for my skipper's license. To the sea!


Saver Queen said...

You write beautifully. Falling in love: a wonderful, terrible thing. I have found my soulmate before, lost him, questioned the meaning of falling in love and its very merit, and, at my lowest moments, wished it never happened. With the perspective I have now, I guess I can say that it adds to a rich and complete picture of being human, as tragic as it may be. Allow me to include a link to some of the conclusions I reached in getting over my lost love from my blog: http://saverqueen.com/2009/07/12/reflections-on-abundance/
Although time has passed and I have gone up and down on that rollercoaster ride of loss since then, I think today my interpretation of events is pretty much consistent with the conclusions on this post. Loss is an escapable part of being human; it is also part of the wildness and beauty of life lived with depth, commitment and grace.

monimay said...

I'm so proud of you!