The True Calmest Waters

Where to begin?

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For three long months, I had virtually nothing to talk about. And I promised myself, to return to the original model of the blog, and post only when something worth posting happens, or comes to mind. I could’ve posted more music, or photos, or bike rides descriptions, but in the end, none of those things is why I started to write in the first place. I don’t live an interesting life, my adventures are not any more worth remembering than anybody else’s, I certainly don’t compose the best music or take the best photos. But more importantly, despite what you might be thinking, I’m not a bragger. It was never my intention to advertise my life or go public with my work. Somewhere along the way, I forgot about that fact.

I wanted a platform on which I could freely confess to the thoughts I shouldn’t be confessing openly. I wanted to write down the things I needed to read, to imitate the process of taking someone else’s perspective on matters that I found troubling. A blog seemed like the best way to do it. And, in my pretentiousness, I thought that, who knows, perhaps one day my descriptions of the problems I face, and the ways in which I deal with them, as well as the openness, albeit anonymous, about the ridiculousness of my being, could be, well, if not helpful, then at least useful to someone facing similar problems and dilemmas as me.

But, needless to say, I lost the sight of what’s important. I confused the “why” with “why not?”, and slowly yet consistently moved away from the original ideas behind Calmest Waters, and began to process of transforming the blog into something much more generic. In my mind, I had a seemingly reasonable justification: as I become more and more self-aware and accustomed to the “standard” way of life, as my problems start to disappear and the blog begins to lose its purpose, the changes have to come, and they will be the changes towards this genericity. And in that case, this changes were not only acceptable, but expected, or even awaited.

The mistake I made, should be obvious by now. I didn’t consider the possibility, of the need for the original concept of the blog somewhere along the line. Call it hubris, pride, over-confidence, but being lenient with myself, I’ll call it a rookie’s mistake. I can honestly say, that there is nothing wrong with sharing your work. Hell, this is what the blogs are for. Most blogs, but not this one. Though I never said it aloud, I can see it now, that in the long term, I aimed at becoming an entertainer, for good abandoning the solitary echo chamber I desperately needed this place to be, when I first started.

Of course, that’s not an observation I made out of nothing. It is fairly clear by now, that this whole rant about what Calmest Waters is supposed to be, was merely a prologue to something much more important.

These are dark days, that we’re having. Darker than anything I’ve seen in quite a long time. The stormy waters levels of dark. In many ways, I am broken, and my spirit is faltering, against everything I claimed in those latest posts of mine. I am in control, I still am, but the sun seems to be hidden behind the thick layer of clouds.

I lost a best friend earlier this month. He died suddenly, hundreds of kilometers away from where I was at the time. I was late for his funeral. They buried him before I could see him the final time.

Pathetic, isn’t it? All that fuss, all of that monologuing and drama for a simple grief of loss? People die, best friends die.

He was an amazing person. The best person for me. Dry sense of humor, reliable, brilliant, but most importantly, he was the right kind of a dick. He wouldn’t let you cry at his shoulder, not that I ever tried that. Instead, he was a motivator, a “pusher” that constantly had you try new things. He was understanding but had no patience for nonsense. A joy to be around, but you felt comfortable sitting by him in silence.

But he had his troubles, much as I had mine. I know he knew he could covey in my at any time. We were that kind of a person to each other. But we always felt comfortable with this. I don’t care how cheesy it sounds – we could see ourselves in each other.

I’ve felt that mourning the dead is a selfish act. You worry about everything that you will lose, with your friends being gone.

I realized how fragile, I am. How much, in the end, I don’t understand about myself, my reactions. I don’t know how shaken I am supposed to be, because my best friend has passed away. And I know, that seeing this as a problem, is wrong, and even thinking about this, is, as I said before, selfish.

I was lost. I understand now, that I didn’t drive the dark away. I simply covered my eyes. I didn’t see it, so it didn’t see me, I thought. But all it took, is a tragedy. A terrible tragedy, but one that people deal with much better than me.

It’s a cliche and an irony, that this very friend would be the one I need to discuss this with.

I failed myself, and by doing that, I know I failed him. I knew him well enough to be confident about saying it aloud.

I will move on. But I’ll need Calmest Waters, the true Calmest Waters for that. The search for the sun begins.

Whatever comes next for this blog, it won’t be entertaining for any of you.

I’m done, for now.

-Calmest Waters

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Calmest Waters: Summer Edition II

Good morning and welcome to a brand new edition of Calmest Waters. I sincerely apologize for the delay – the Summer is up and running for some time now, and the general drought when it comes to this blog which we happened to experience these past two months. At first, there was nothing to talk about, then I was too busy to post, and then there was so much to talk about and so little time to talk about it, that I went into a shutdown mode and didn’t post anything at all, as to, sort of, regroup. Nevertheless, the Summer, as we all know, is well underway, and that calls for a celebration, a new background photo, and some promises I do not expect to fulfill at all.

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It’s been an absolutely fantastic Spring overall. Most of it was just how I like it – slow, steady, uneventful. Simply perfect. Thankfully, when something big, and not necessarily good did happen, through my experience I remained disciplined enough to deal with it. Then the exams have come and gone. Particularly unexciting this year, which again, is a good thing. I moved back to my Summer home and already started my new job, which is excellent and so needed. But what matters most, in the context of the blog, is that I’m biking again, and oh boy, am I biking a lot.

Thus, it is safe to assume that biking posts will be the dominant force on the blog these next couple of months. I would suspect that this means an increase in blog posts being posted per month, but I honestly wouldn’t know, too early to tell.

My Summer looks rather promising. A decent job, while still having a lot of free time. No serious obligations otherwise, which is great. No real plans, other than biking, which I love the most.

Some things I’ll need to deal with sooner or later, so I do have some thinking-things-through posts coming along. But that’s for another day.

The new background photo, yes. We all know how it goes, it’s Summer, it’s hot, it’s sunny. White sands, azure water, not a cloud in the sky. That’s Summer. Maybe not mine, as mine will be much greener than that, but perhaps one day… It’s one of my life goals to book a holiday in a place with white sands and palm trees on the beach. One day.

As for the headline – I thought with all the adventures, traveling and wandering around, I’d look for something that would herald the wonders I might find out there, and yet at the same time, elevated it to a new level, where the pure pleasure and joy to be taken from that experience would be more than a good time, but more of a blessing. Thus, I decided, Van Morrison’s “Into the Mystic” works perfectly. Our motto for the next three months or so.

The time has come to say farewell to the fantastic Spring that we had, and jump into the next stage of this amazing year.

Summer Edition no. 2 is a go, ladies and gentlemen. Let’s do this.

-Calmest Waters

Spring, bike, home, me.

An exceptionally hot April, full of excitement, successes, and positive things seemed to be merely an introduction to an even more incredible May. The 1st and 3rd of May are national holidays in Poland, which means no work, which in itself is amazing, but my God, the weather this year, absolutely outstanding. And if you’re as clever as me, and planned your work carefully, scheduled it in such a way that you maximize your free-time while not falling behind on your duties, you had over a week of freedom in the hot yet pleasant sun. And what do we do, when the weather’s fine and the free time is plenty? We visit home and go for a bike ride!

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Unusually early this year, but that’s a good thing. The warm and sunny April made me thirsty for some biking, at least on a local level, but the city isn’t really meant for it. But I knew, that the first week of May will come soon enough, and all my dreams will be fulfilled. Worth the wait.

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Music: The Wanderer

A new track uploaded!

I’ve just noticed that I am the most productive music-wise when I’m binge re-watching sci-fi shows. Curious.

It’s Star Trek TNG, by the way. But the track itself refers more to the pleasure of hiking when the world outside finally gets as green as I always picture it. I was tempted to call it “Green Wander”, but I feel that the track with that title would be… I don’t know, somehow different. I’m sure I’ll understand when I’ll make it.

And I will because my wanders are all in green recently.

The world-famous cliche states that it’s not the destination that matters, but the journey itself. While I might not be famous for my wandering around, I am inclined to agree. I’m one of those people who gets excited at the idea of a few-hours-long train ride for the opportunity to be alone with my thoughts, with the landscape outside my window dynamically changing. At the same time, I suppose the old “B&H”, biking and hiking, both do fall in the “wandering” category in their way.

Does that make me a wanderer? I really can’t say, but yes.

Anyway, this theme is something I’ve been humming to myself for a long time, but the proper arrangement for it has been eluding my imagination ever since I thought of it. I think even the most demanding connoisseurs will appreciate the bold yet oddly satisfying composition of the orchestra-dominated melody, with an intrusion of a slightly sampled electric guitar. Such is my will.

Alright, that would be all. As always, enjoy, if you can find the strength to do it!

-Calmest Waters

Raving of a happy madman.

The good times are winning, the bad times were outnumbered, outgunned and outmatched, they are in retreat. I expect unconditional surrender and total capitulation very soon. On every level of my existence, things are going alright. So much in fact, that I couldn’t force myself to write a “problem-centered” post. Not right now. Quite the opposite – it feels like a duty to report that everything is fine. Call it a status report. But before we begin…

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That’s all fine and everything, but writing that kind of a post, well, while it’s not a direct contradiction of my purpose here, it is a slight move away from the original mission statement. So let’s call it an… expansion. The times are gooood, and whenever they will be, I won’t hesitate to address that fact. Not anymore! The general theme of the blog so far seems to be simply complaining about everyday and non-everyday life, if you know what I mean. While the pseudo-therapeutic influence of writing down your worries and problems shouldn’t, in any case, be underestimated, one can’t survive solely on problems and issues. Occasionally, I discuss something neutral, every now and then something useless or ridiculous comes to mind, from time to time I write about something more common or mundane, something everyone can agree with or something I find hard to explain. Then, of course, there are the happy posts, the enthusiastic posts. A welcome addition, nonetheless, a result of an unexpected turn of events.

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To not need to love.

Time to share a little secret. Which, I’m not quite sure, I might have shared with you in the past. But in my non-anonymous life outside of this blog, it is very much a secret. My parents don’t know, my brother, the rest of my family nor do my friends, although to be fair, beyond my brother, none of them would care. But since I care the most, and perhaps it is the time to reassure myself yet again that the choice or maybe the conclusion that I reached is the right one, here comes the post, which explains why I won’t marry nor will I ever start a family. Despite this being something that I knew for some time now, some of the thoughts on this are fresher than they may seem.

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I hope I’m not the only person who does this, but every once in a while, when I realize that I have changed for the better, matured perhaps, I feel idiotically proud of myself. It goes as far as a genuine desire to reward myself for the personal growth that I managed to achieve. In the past, what would immediately follow would be a feeling of shame – such a celebration of an often insignificant improvement is simply dumb, these days though I’m just happy this growth happens at all. And I did realize something about myself recently. Something about the touchy subject of love.

Perhaps I’m not the best at it, but I’m trying to keep this multiple sclerosis thing that I have sort of ignored, far away from the main focus of my life, or this blog in fact. And whenever it does happen to be an important part of the current events, or if I have to take it into consideration when I’m making plans for the future, I always try to take the more optimistic approach with it, assuming that it “won’t be that bad”, and basically making it the problem of the “future Jake”. That being said, there are certain decisions that I made regarding my future, decisions I made considering exactly what will my disposition be living with MS. Now, my fear is, some of the conclusions might seem overly dramatized, but at this point, I don’t care. I reach the same decision every time I make an attempt at re-thinking my position, and that’s the closest I can get to being confident in the choices I made.

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Maintenance: Spring Edition

We did it! Ha, we actually did it. We survived this goddamn abomination of a season, the Winter, and as hope returns to our hearts, we can look to the future with confidence and joy. The darkness has passed, ladies and gentlemen, and the world basks in the Spring Sun. And my dear friends, it’s only going to get even better from now. As hard it might be to imagine with the nightmares of the season pass still fresh in our memories, the age of light is upon us, and the terrors of the cold have no power over our minds and souls anymore. We are saved!

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The Winter was as horrible as it could. Cold, snowy, uneventful (aka boring), felt much longer than three months, and when something actually did happen, it was somewhere on the “bad” spectrum. I failed to achieve any of my goals, except for one, and in many ways, I feel like I’ve taken an involuntary step back. Thankfully, it’s nothing that can’t be fixed, and the opportunities will present themselves, of that I’m certain.

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Song: Sunday

I couldn’t post it on last Sunday, because it wasn’t ready, and I won’t be able to upload it next Sunday because I will be busy. So I thought it will be appropriate to upload it on the exact opposite of Sunday – Wednesday. Consider it a tribute to Sundays, or a chance to reminisce about one.

Sunday – what they are and what they stand for everyone knows. Technically a weekend, but the same way September is a Summer – kind of, but the shadow of what comes next is upon us already.

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The Departure.

I had good years and I had bad years, a different attitude towards a changing world, having me make different decisions or sometimes making these decisions for me, to some extent, that is as long as I didn’t fight it. In short, I had my ups and downs, with the downs quite frequently dominating my life, but one thing I’m sort of proud of, or perhaps a better way to put it is to say that the one down I know I didn’t hit, is that I never considered myself a totally lost cause. Sure, I didn’t like the way my life is going, and I didn’t expect it to change anytime soon, nor did I see capable of changing it on a whim, yes, but inside of me I never lost the little spark of… opportunity. Being blessed with the life out of poverty, out of any permanent bonds of any kind, I always had in mind the one thought, the last thought – I can just walk out.

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I’m not suggesting I was the first one to realize this simple fact, of course. I’m only saying I’ve mastered the art of bluffing to myself, to my own brain, that if I finally hit the theoretical rock bottom, at any point I see fit, I can leave, just like that, no questions asked. Leave for wherever I want, do whatever I want. Sure, sacrificing the opportunities for which I would have to continue working where and how I worked so far, closing some doors behind me and for good, but at this point would it be missed? There is an incredible sense of freedom and power, that comes from the realization, perhaps because it is a rather exclusive state of being.

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What would my perfect day look like?

Inspired by a sudden burst of positive emotions surprising me earlier this otherwise terrible, terrible evening, I thought it a fun idea to imagine what would my ideal day look like.

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Perhaps there are many ways to describe the perfection, and this is but one of them, yet what I’m trying to say, is that there is no happiness above that. As in, nothing would make me happier. I hope that this would give you an insight to my mind and character. Quite possibly it will make me smaller in your eyes, but at this point, I’m not afraid to say that I don’t care nearly as much as I thought I would. I still love you, but you know…

Some of these may sound weird, some may sound unimpressive or simply wrong, and you’re absolutely free to judge me. That’s why I started the blog.

Let’s begin, shall we?

01:00 I wake up and immediately see it’s still dark outside. I check my watch – it’s only one a.m., coincidentally my favorite hour. But more importantly, I still have six hours of sleep until I have to start preparing for morning classes.

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