August doldrums

August doldrums

It is mid-August and the doldrums have set in. I first heard this term in high school when the topic was the “discovery” of America. In nautical terms this refers to the belt around the Earth near the equator where ships with sails got stuck in windless waters. There was no wind and so they just drifted.

Years ago when I read The Phantom Toll Booth, (a wonderful elementary school level chapter book)  I recall Milo, the main character, also enters the Doldrums. In his world this is an actual dull, colorless place where he is stuck. It is inhabited by the Lethargians and laughing and thinking are outlawed. He realizes he landed there because he stopped thinking, or being inquisitive.

This so aptly describes how I’m feeling. I don’t want to think, and I feel aimless. It is not my first time in the Doldrums? Have you been there? How were you able to leave?

But I also wonder about the European sailors, and if they had not entered the doldrums and drifted onto our islands and continents, would the Americas be a different place? Maybe. Maybe not. I venture to guess that it would be a matter of time before this hemisphere would be overrun. The Old World wanted to expand. This desire to grow and acquire seems to be in our DNA. Some days I hold meager hope for a peaceable kindom and feel that greed will get the better of us all. Sometimes, however, I can almost spy the possibility of finding the sweet spot where all have enough and everyone feels “just right.”

Milo does escape the Lethargians simply by thinking. In my case, meditation is in order. A different kind of non-thinking where I feel Oneness with everything/one-if even for a second or two.

Making and creating help me get there as well and I am elated when it pushes me out to the other side. Recently I’ve been working on larger landscapes with pressed flowers. Each piece unique. These are not yet in my  shop, but STAY TUNED!

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