I just need to say that date and get it out of the way, so that I have a record here of what happened this past Saturday.
Saturday was one of those unique and peculiar days that when looking back on it, you couldn't imagine the day going any better. It started out like most other Saturdays do for me, with a late Friday evening leading to a long sleep until about 10am or so. I had plans to go to Santa Barbara, so I didn't want to linger too long in a fuzzy headed state. I went through the normal morning routine, which I won't elaborate on here. I ended up leaving around 2pm and getting to Santa Barbara at 315.
I went to Santa Barbara with absolutely no plans, which is a first. I typically will go up to see some theatre that a few college friends might be involved in, or to just see those friends over coffee or lunch. Santa Barbara is one of the rare places that stays beautiful pretty much all year, so you need very little excuse to visit. This time, my inclination for going was based on primarily the wonderful weather and the need to get alone for a time and think about life. I think we as human beings need these periods of "escape", to process where we are and where we're going.
I walked along State St for a while, stopping in at Borders to browse as I inevitably must always do. On the way to Borders, I stopped in at the new Apple store, eyeing the iMacs and hoping one day to make that investment. The weather was absolutely gorgeous on Saturday, and I began to wonder why we as human beings don't take more of those moments to stop and appreciate the natural beauty that surrounds us.
Inside Borders, I took my time walking along the fiction section, scanning the shelves and looking for that one book that surely I couldn't live without. I visited history, and quickly evaluated if there was any new American history book that I absolutely needed. There was not.
Visiting bookstores is theraputic for me. I'm not sure if it's the sensation of having so much knowledge in one place, the calming effect of flipping through a new book, or just the fact of being surrounded by people who might love books as much as you do. It is a place where I feel at home, as silly as that might sound. I've been a reader all my life, ever since I could read. I read Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy at a very young age...I believe I was 9 or 10 during the first read through. But that's another story.
I visited a few more sections of the bookstore, but nothing had caught my eye and I decided it was time to go. Disappointed with not finding anything, I decided to visit another bookstore.
Chaucers is a nifty little independent bookstore in Santa Barbara, one that I always enjoy visiting when I'm in town. They have a great selection, and I always end up finding a book or two that I hadn't seen in the other big bookstore chains. In this case, it was a copy of two Shakespeare plays in the Oxford World Classics series, Hamlet and Richard III. I have the plays already, but wanted a more convenient copy of the individual play for each, since I semi-regularly read through them. It was around this time that I began to reflect.
I thought of the beauty of the written word, the wisdom and insight that all of these writers have passed on to us, whether or not we've noticed. What a gift they've given.
I then thought about how much time that I spend writing. And how writing would allow me to create content on subjects that I care about the most...particularly history and theatre. I would also be open to writing on other things, especially politics or current events if I were to work for a newspaper or journal. I could also indulge in writing fiction, or even plays! Needless to say, this got me very excited.
And then it occurred to me...
Why don't I write?