Nature Versus Modern Man
Time for Pause!… does nature know the times and seasons better than modern man?
I’m a canal boating, off-grid, nature lover and it’s time for pause- I’ve been thinking about nature versus modern life. Modern man- and wo-man, are said to owe their heredity to a Neanderthal state of archaic human.
Do you remember the children’s animation – Mr. Ben? An ordinary business man donning a bowler hat and walking stick, each week, steps into the fancy-dress shop with the ding of a door bell, dressed in conservative striped suit and tie. Here he disappears into the changing room, swapping his ordinary clothes for a new adventure, this time for a caveman’s costume. On leaving the shop, he enters some kind of time warp, a time machine, a black hole, and lands in a Neanderthal world. Here he crouches in wait, spear in hand, in his stone cave.
Yet, modern man takes shelter in his centrally heated home and only awakens to Spring, when the warming sun first beams in the window and melts the chocolate Easter eggs glued to his spoiled children’s sticky hands.
Nature is the custodian of a clock, one that awakens us at dawn, and keeps precision perfect time.
Forget your timeless Rolex, or McQueen’s chronograph- the Tag Heuer Monaco, which his appearance in the 1971 film Le Mans- made famous. Throw out the Omega Seamaster that grazes the wrist of idols such as James Bond. Humans’ efforts to capture perfect time are a mere illusion, and so, scholarly modern man- you can go back to your established 200,000-year-old (How old?) limestone caves, yes, go back to your Neanderthal valleys and hang your archaic heads low. You my modern man, need to learn to tell the time!
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The real world of time exists here in nature, ticking along with guaranteed accuracy. True time is out there, in your garden of Eden.
Living on my tiny boat, you can feel and touch each day; the temperature, the wind, and the rhythm of the days as they warm and cool. I tread the consistency of the mud. and listen to the changing mating calls of ducks and the twitterpation of nesting birds. I watch as ducks pair up-male and female. Thick woolly sheep bound out of the sheltering hedgerows and new lambs appear. The winter tree grows buds and the first strong shoots push forth well before the arrival of Easter. Days roll out, commanded by the sun and the moon. Time belongs to he who has uttered all into place. Seasons pass as the farmer reaps his harvest- lambing, planting, reaping and resting. Old farmers are better time keepers than modern man.
Time for pause- I don’t enjoy wearing a watch!
They remind me of work deadlines, events I’d rather miss, seconds lost, minutes late and hours devoured- and as life shortens, a moment I can never re-live. A life reduced to counting-1, 2, 3… till the end. A machine- timely production, a conveyor belt, a quota, a robotic movement. The sound of the turning wheels of industrial life, and a perpetual flashing light. Stress, rush, the desire for ‘stop motion’ and ‘rewind’, a slowing down… the switching off… never an opportunity… to stop and breathe… The steam train’s momentum runs out- the hulk of an engine shunts to a halt. Oh, to climb down off this machine, to pause… step down onto the gravel… to touch, smell, taste and see all around!
A Fictional Robinson Crusoe marooned on an island…
Robinson Crusoe was a fictional character (likely based on the real-life story of Scott-Alexander Selkirk, 1704) He lifts his chalk stone and etches slow and rough on the grey, cold cave wall, once again… as the sun comes up and the sun goes down. By 1960 he has evolved, taking off into space, as an 1814 English translation greets the arrival of the 1960’s films- His Girl Friday, Swiss Family Robinson and Robinson Crusoe on Mars. Are we ‘Lost in Space’? Do you see a wormhole? Don’t go there!
Daylight Saving- Why do we do that?
Daylight saving adds only confusion here in the UK. Farmers again, don’t appreciate modern man’s meddling with the clock- harvest time’s early morning dew, worker’s lunch times, shipping schedules and milking times being disrupted. Agriculture works by the sun. WW1 Germany persuaded the world into this time shift, to allow for conserving of electricity. A plan which was actioned again during WW2. For some countries, they never returned to regular time. They deemed old rural life less important than the dictates of modern man’s urban life. Now, as we connect with our global friends, the dislocation leaves us dependent upon our computers to translate the chaos of urban settlers and a world war left behind. I’m ashamed to admit, I once took my children to school an hour too early!
Add into the now difficult equation of time- the Romans!
A narrow boat non-fiction storyteller, I write about the truth. So, with marching legs of iron, the Romans Spring forward and Fall back, with the medieval Latin concept of B. C (Before Christ) and A. D, (anno Domini nostri Jesu Christi which translates, “In the year of our Lord Jesus Christ.”) Dionysius Exiguus, the mathematician and monk responsible, changed the way years were numbered, while desiring to put distance between Easter and the memory of a well known persecutor of Christians.
The maker of time its-self possibly teeters on the edge of his throne with incredulity, at the pride exhibited by mere men moving time around as if tossing a salad, before him. The Roman’s pursued an assault upon our understanding of ‘Years’ and ‘Christianity’. Indeed, no two Romans could agree, if the year zero should be counted. And no one seemed to know when Jesus was born, so they made up their best guess. Now, B. C. E (Before Common Era) and C. E (Common Era), replace B. C and A. D, to appease a society of multiple faiths. Ever heard the saying, ‘If it aint broke, don’t fix it’?
I conclude, nature knows the times and seasons better than modern man.
Beware the history books that carbon date each dug up treasure, and project the time of significant events. Those that purport millions of Neanderthal years past and universal leaps into the black holes of the future; the baffling of scientific claims. For our time-line they have sabotaged, lost and broken; They have buried time along with the truth. I, and my mere bargee narrative, trust in nature; the hardy farmer, a duck’s mating call, a songbird, the soft coloured mud, the warming sun, the full moon, and here I wait for the Creator of time its self. And you modern spaceman, after time for pause, have you learned to tell the time?
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