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November 14, 2011

I am at Munich airport. My flight to Stockholm is delayed. Everything is delayed. The whole area is shrouded in fog. There are arrivals and departures, but fewer than normal. The delays are stretching out.

In my mind too, fog. Six days of wonderful teaching and three nights of performances; a group piece, a lecture/performance and a solo improvisation. Munich has been wonderful. On Saturday, among the lovely, skilled, welcoming participants, a retired 77 year old ballet dancer, a 6 week old child and a dog (though only the first of them, Wolfgang, joined in…..)

When I teach, one of the core principles I work from is that ‘if there is nothing for you to do, do nothing’. Like many principles it sounds simple until you really try to enact it. When I say do nothing, I mean, actively wait. No unnecessary thinking, no distractions, no fidgeting. Just actively doing nothing until there is something to do.

Now, shrouded in fog in a sluggish airport, there is nothing to do. Actively I wait – for news, guidance, for something that requires my response.

It makes me realise how rare are the times I give myself to ‘be’ rather than to ‘do’, to ‘watch’ rather than to ‘achieve’. This too is part of what I do, and what I should do more of, stepping outside time, waiting, doing nothing, being.

There is no hurry and impatience would be pointless. Stockholm is not going anywhere. Nor am I. But still, eventually, we will meet.


Of course the fog lifted, the plane came. We took off. Less than thirty seconds after leaving the ground, we were in bright sunshine. The seemingly impenetrable, paralysing fog was only a very local phenomenon.

So it often is. Amid the paralysis, when we feel overwhelmed by the need to do something, anything, everything…. if we just wait, do nothing, then perspectives will shift and the clarity of daylight will probably return.

Enough of this metaphor. I’m in Stockholm and I’m hungry.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 14, 2011 3:44 pm

    Sad to hear the fog has spread to where you are. Hope your delays are cleared up soon. Safe Journey x

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