The frozen ocean is just ten miles away, but I can’t seem to get there. Here, in my busy swirl of a schedule there is no time and no car to take me to the place I most want to be–by the sea. I don’t mind the cold and the wet–I have stood for hours by the sound, waiting for orcas to make their pilgrimage, rewarded for my rain-soaked skin by a parade the likes of none, 12 or 21 (I no longer remember which way the number turned) “killer whales” spouting by. But I was 20-something then and time stopped for adventure. When did I lose that watch, the one that stopped? The one with the hour hand on wander and the minute hand on lust?
I love the names of the three key devices in a mechanical watch: spring, balance wheel, and escapement. My mind leaps right over the engineering “truths” and into the poetic–in order for time to work we need to spring, to balance, to escape. What if today I turned my crown and set into motion a small jump from the must’s and sprung into the want’s? What if I balanced this to-the-minute life of mine with a moment measured by the vastness of the sea? And what if, only for an instant, I escaped all that I believed about myself and my limitations and went to the shore where, right in the middle of whale-watching off-season, some beautiful, wild thing showed her silvery self in the distance? And what if that shining, wild flash of a thing, were me?