Lentement

Towards a slower way

Category: Lentement (page 1 of 3)

Lentement #14 Sketch

The children were playing this morning and I was sat at the kitchen table trying to read. Trying to shoe-horn in some lentement before the drum beat of the day becomes over-powering.

I was distracted by the view out of my kitchen window.  It is nothing out of the ordinary.

There are houses that back onto our garden about 150 metres away. Lewis Moody (ex-England Rugby Captain) lives in the house that backs onto ours. He never pops round.

Anyway… Continue reading

Lentement #13 Turn off the noise

Questions asked, answers given, meetings arranged and meetings attended.

People talking in person and people talking in email, phone calls, mobile calls, answerphone messages.

Talk, talk, talk.

It reaches a crescendo at certain times of the day and then quietens only for the volume to be raised a little later.

There is a lot of noise.

Not a lot of silence.

It’s hard to slow down, to withdraw and refresh in the average day.

This is the job: People. So noise is not going to go away.

In fact I like noise, I like people, I like listening and I like talking.

People to listen and people to talk to.

But, and perhaps this is getting more acute as a I get older, I also need moments of quiet. Continue reading

Lentement #12 Walkout

I’m working today.
Unusual for me because it is a Saturday
However today I am delivering a workshop at a conference.
People I don’t know to make polite and pointless conversation with.
Final preparation to do for the workshop, the subject of which I have only a 50% grasp.
Emails to catch up on.
Working on Saturday is not ideal for lentement, but there you go.
Sometimes it happens.
Lunchtime arrives liked a long-awaited friend to my rumbling stomach.
I find myself chatting to the leader of another youth work organisation and we are talking about rest and ‘sabbath’.  I share a bit about my pursuit of slowness. I don’t manage to impress him as much as I hoped.

Continue reading

Lentement #11 Write a letter

When was the last time you wrote to someone? Not the thank you note that you rushed out to get that job ticked off after Christmas, or the equally hurried one sent a month after your birthday prompted by the guilty feeling you ought to have done this earlier.

Or is it just me?

Neither of those is really writing a letter.

Writing a letter used to be an art. Historians pour over letters written by ancients; these are not rushed little-considered notes. I doubt historians will be interested in my brief scribble to the friend I rarely see but write to each New Year to express gratitude for a present I didn’t really want. Letters of old are works of art; thought about and considered.

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Lentement #10 Do one thing at a time

What would it feel like to do one thing at a time?

Hang on a minute. I pride myself on double-diary dating and multi-tasking.

Sorry, I digress.

A friend and I were talking recently and he was relaying a conversation where he had been talking about music. Music, he was saying, has become background noise. We don’t listen to music, rather it provides the soundtrack that we wish to live to. It accompanies us as we commute, whilst we work, when we eat and socialise.

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