Sunday, February 13, 2011

A Lot of Free Time

Funny things happen when you have a lot of free time on your hands. For me, I've always been an admittedly excellent manager of my time. Even when I had a day-job and wrote music on the side, I got a lot of my own work done. But in Iceland, with only my creative side to tend to, I also see that the apartment is cleaner. I don't ignore writing emails or calling my friends (as much). I write more music, I listen to more music, I get to read. I do some exercises 5 days a week (read: mostly interpretive-dancing around my room, interspersed with push-ups. No judging. It seems to be working, and making me happy too), and I get to swim here more! But then other things start to pop into my head, really unrealistic things.

'But I still have so much work to do!' My unrealistic side replies.
My relaxed half replies back, 'but you set your own schedule here.'
'But I need to DO ALL THE THINGS!! I need to do everything there is to be done!' (much like this fabulous comic here). I need to go to all the museum shows! I need to go grocery shopping! I need to see every concert every day! I need to hike up the mountain! There's not enough time to do everything!! I need to write all the music I will ever write ever because when will I have this time again??

This guy had time to write, I should be slaving away, too, preferably by candlelight. Oh wait, he's dead. Composers in past centuries aren't really good role models for today anyway.

I'm not fluent in Icelandic yet, and I've been taking lessons for SEVEN MONTHS!

I haven't gotten famous yet and sold a million copies of my still-in-progress contemporary-classical album, why aren't I getting on this??! And I'm not hanging out with the cool kids every minute of every day. And I still haven't had sexy babies with my new Icelandic husband yet, WHAT'S WRONG WITH ME.

Then, I step outside for a walk. Or do something different that day, and I realize... duh! Relax! It's only because I don't go to work to an office every day here that I feel like I'm not doing what I'm supposed to be doing, it's just what I'm used to doing. I've given five concerts here already, and performed in two others! I've written three choir works, lots of collaged music, I've made freakin' bracelets out of fish skin leather.

I hear in my head these outside pressures, that are really not meant for how I operate well. What's more, I'm learning language plenty fast enough. I'm doing work that is outside my normal boundaries, and challenging myself in countless ways. And certainly no man no friends nobody, will want me to freak out Jessie-Saved-By-The-Bell style over nothing. Though I still love that clip, it's pretty timeless...right?

Sorry, Mugison, I had to use your face as the ideal Icelander on this post (I believe the photos are by Páll Stefansson, or possibly Oddvar, I forget) Í alvöru. Though frankly you're still pretty awesome; I have it on record that most people who watch you perform swoon over you, no matter what their sexual preference is. For the record, my prerequisites for husband material are not limited to beards, fishing boats, reindeer pelts, and life in the fjords.

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