When I was a medical intern, I longed for two things with equal intensity: to be competent/caring/omnipresent as a physician, and to ignore everyone and everything for a queen-sized bed with 200-count Egyptian cotton sheets. Now that I’m writing, as my kids would say, “Second verse, same as the first.”
My present two extremes: desire for universal approval and admiration for my writing and intellect…and no contact with another human being ever again. What’s more, I know I’m not alone. (Check out Therese Walsh’s blog for a lyrical poem which encapsulates the feeling. Scroll down to Bear Mountain).
So, courtesy of a week which has been eaten up by
- a quantity of non-serious but time-consuming events;
- roofers who pounded merrily on my house for twelve hours a day, but did not consent to remove their shirts — once;
- a writing task which asks much of me in courage, but which I can avoid due to “pressing” online concerns;
- and my own sheer Tarty contrariness…
dream with me, if you will, about The Ultimate Writer’s Retreat™. What would yours look like?
This would be pretty close to mine, although I’d have to remove the other people.
Its necessary qualities:
- no television, radio, Internet, or phone (cellular, land or satellite)
- climate that makes outdoor walks enticing for several hours, but respite from nature also a decadent, delicious pleasure
- natural surfaces/decor
- no neighbors
- accessible by one road which is barred by a locked gate, key conveniently in my pocket
- plenty of healthy, delicious food
- a floor-to-ceiling library
- limitless paper and my new pen
- a fireplace
I’d take this one too, although the guitar would do me no good. I’d like a piano or, in a pinch, a recorder. The local wildlife might object, but that’s honestly their problem.
Once upon a time I used to crochet, press leaves between the pages of a book, sketch, take photographs, perform crewel and cross-stitch. There’s nothing stopping me from doing those things, but I just forget. I think I’d remember in a cabin like this one. I know that handiwork tends to restore me to myself and make me more creative.
How about you? Do you dream of solitude or locales where you can protect yourself against interruptions, both of the self-inflected and external variety? If you do, where would you go?