So this is my last night on Haida Gwaii. There is so much I want to write about.
Yesterday was the opening for the Haida Heritage Centre. For a lot of the time I was oddly detached from what was happening. Things were beautiful, wonderful, but I was emotionally detached.
The emotions didn't really hit me until I saw a large picture in the museum section. It featured a couple dozen Haida, dressed in their regalia, masks, and paint. A caption said that in an effort to drive out Haida culture, a missionary had everyone dress in their paint and regailia and everything "one last time." Then I felt deeply moved. THe sorrow, the power. "My God," I thought "One Last Time."
Imagine being told it was a last time you could dress as you wished, that you could celebrate your holidays, last day you could live by your own beliefs. But god damn. It wasn't the last time. Now there is the Haida Heritage Centre, now there is the glory of the living culture of the Haida people. I almost cried, seeing that picture. That "One Last Time."
And now I am heading back to Ottawa. Leaving tears me so. It seems like an act of insanity. It seems like there is no good reason to leave. But it is Time. Time seems to be a theme in my life recently. Deadlines, time lines, the past, the present, the future, memory, attention, anticipation, consciousness, awareness... Balancing it all. Moving within the requirements of time, and schedules without becoming owned by them, possessd and torn by them. I was once told that to master time, you need to study it. Keep a watch, and constantly be aware of what time it is. Time how long it takes you to do things. Watch at what time you tend to do things, how frequently you act... study yourself as an entity within time so that you may move through it without being bound by it. Seems like stable advice to me. Now I just need a good watch.
Sometimes, I feel like I am on a mountain summit, or on a stage surrounded by lights. All around I can see variations on my life, on how it will be. So many roles I could fall into so easily.
I could become an academic. Complete my bachlores, maybe return to Leuven for a Master's, three years as an associate prof at some place like King's in Halifax...maybe start a PhD at the same time, and become an expert in some field of philosophy.
I could easily become a neurotic writer like Woody Allen or Philip K. Dick. Cloister myself in genius and madness.
I had more vision of future selves earlier, but they escape me now.
But they are all not me, I feel. They are just false variations. Shades of who I am. I want the source, the true Zander that lies hidden in these stereotypes, archetypes and roles. Nights like this, on the edge of a journey, makes me feel like I am at a crossroads. Reminds me that I live in a state of perpetual cross roads. Well, my laptop battery is dying. Goodnight everyone.
2 weeks ago