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Two little words

January 7, 2010

Happy New Year all round- and thanks so much for your comments and emails full of festive wishes! Did everyone have a good holiday? I hope so…

I saw the New Year in on Dartmoor, and something very strange happened. Normally, I’d have spent quite a while meditating frenetically on my New Year’s resolutions. Gleefully crafting a list as long as my arm. I think I wrote last year about how much I love the shiny clean blank slate a new year brings. So you’d think with a new decade I’d have a field day.

But no. This time around, strolling purposefully (and breathlessly) through the Devon countryside, I just didn’t feel like it.

On Dartmoor, the landscape is never still. Everywhere you look there is constant motion. There are brooks bubbling and streams streaming, carving their way ever onward.

There are stones shaggy with burgeoning moss, and rocks and tors worn away by time and over-energetic weather.

The trees seem to move too, leaning with the wind, or bracing themselves against it, depending on your viewpoint.

Even the shades of the terrain, bracken, heather and scrub, shift when you’re not looking.


Movement. Action. More Action. The landscape simply gets on with it. It didn’t make mental notes on how its brooks will bubble more vigorously next year, or set targets to improve the moss:stone coverage ratios. It simply thrives. Which observation (although obvious) made me wonder if there’s such a thing as being too zealous about self-improvement.

Perhaps, I thought, moments slip by today that are missed because tomorrow is being planned with ruthless efficiency? Perhaps I have too strong a tendency to navel-gazing and the pondering of perfection long past the point when the pondering should stop and action begin? Perhaps, in short, for me there should be less resolutions and (in the words of Elvis Presley) a little more action?

So, courtesy of the Dartmoor landscape, this year my creed is a simple two words.
More Action.

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