Most of us are on the clock. In the obvious sense, yes – we’re working 9-to-5, 5-of-7. But it extends beyond that.
Our days are dictated by a rigid, complex framework of calendar invitations, time zones, reminders on your phone, save-the-date cards, appointments, school terms, quarterly forecasts and… whatever it is that controls the traffic lights.
It’s a schedule somehow both inescapable and self-imposed. But it’s not universal.
Because there’s a different place. One just beyond the mountains, but just before the plains.
A place that isn’t on the clock. At least not on our clock. That doesn’t bend to our systems.
It’s a place where the seasons aren’t evenly distributed. Where the fruit grows best on the hills the machines can’t handle. Where the calm looking rivers are a source of furious power, and where it’s most peaceful in the heart of a crowded forest.
None of it holds to traditional wisdom, or easy answers. Those who demand of it uninterrupted tranquillity will be as disappointed as those who insist on non-stop adrenaline.
But if you can surrender your need for control, and let your self be guided by the land’s natural rhythms… you’ll be led to the beauty beyond convention.
The produce that doesn’t ensure bitter winters, but thrives on them – creating tastes that simply can’t be mass-produced.
The sprawling lakes that compel some to quiet contemplation and others to white-water exhilaration.
The empty space, that defies expectations of instant gratifications – yet endlessly rewards ponderousness and idle wandering and curiosity about fine details.
These are the hallmarks of a land that can’t be civilised, that keeps us in check to maintain the clarity of both its crystalline streams and dazzling night sky.
But you don’t need to be intimidated by it. You just need to surrender to its own definitions of speed and space and time.
Give it a try. Get off the clock.
The Snowy Valleys. Now in season.