The benefits of travelling are often documented, but I wonder how often new and unusual magazines is included in the list?
It wasn’t deliberate. One night, there was no TV. I was preoccupied uploading the day’s activities to the blog. Mum hadn’t brought anything to read. Down at the newsagents, I grabbed the standard Women’s Day because it has a puzzle section in the back … and then I wandered the aisles to see what else might be available.
It’s worth checking out the offerings of local newsagents when you arrive in a new town. Even in a city, the titles differ from suburb to suburb.
On this occasion, I found Slow which comes with the additional title “Because Good Things Take Time”. The magazine started in Castlemaine, just up the road from where we were camping. It’s been on sale since 2009. And it has a website: http://www.slowmagazine.com.au/
As I understand it, adopting a slow way of living developed in response to the high stress environment of the modern-day. Frankly, I think that overlooks the high stress environment of the pre-technology age of my parents and grandparents who struggled against the elements on rural properties, raised lots of kids, and lived miles and miles from the nearest shop and medical practitioner.
The idea of giving up the trappings of the modern world to slow down might be fine for those who’ve already succeeded in their chosen profession. Those of us who found themselves in their 50s wondering where the time went … well, we might have a different response. Having missed the boarding call, the aim is to work out how to catch one of those boats that others are now trying to abandon. Slow is not my catchcry.
Yet, there was one article about slowing down that I did find useful. On page 14, Carl’s seven tips for getting in touch with your “inner tortoise” (his quote marks) included the recommendation to downsize your calendar. Some will say, “Yeah. Right. That’s gonna happen.” But his suggestion for achieving this made perfect sense.
“Look at your schedule for next week, pick the least important scheduled activity and drop it.”
For those of us who want to get more into what’s left of life, we should be aiming for high value. The Slow Movement might actually help achieve that. It’s about creating opportunity and space to assess priorities. The aim is to consider the quality and contribution that our new endeavours will make to us and, if we’ve a mind too, those around us.
To find a finish for this post, I closed my eyes and fanned the magazine pages back and forth through my fingers. A phrase from Edwina Freeme’s article grabbed my attention: overwhelming accomplishment.