A Slow Day

945 words | 4 page(s)

The day I am going to describe began more or less as usual. I chose a beautiful summer Sunday and prepared to the experiment. In the evening I scheduled my cell phone to automatically shut down in the middle of the night and to turn back on only in the morning of Monday. I woke up and thought of a cup of strong coffee. I love starting my day with a cup of coffee, thus I approached a coffee machine, but then I realized that drinking coffee was alright, but it was wrong to use a coffee machine for that. Thus, I found a coffee mill, which I happened to have bought somewhere as a souvenir, and milled my coffee, probably for the first time in my life with my own hands. It gave me a lot of time to think over the schedule for the day.

I cooked my coffee, and I enjoyed the experience. Not only the taste was much better, but I also enjoyed the process, then I went to a friend of mine, who owned a bicycle and asked him to allow me to have it for a day. I rode the bicycle to the bank of a river, quite far from the city, where I could be alone and enjoy the rest. Something I could not afford doing for a significant amount of time. I spent there a few hours, and I realized that I had not been able to reflect on so much in my life and I simply failed to notice so many things around me. I was doing nothing in particular, but it was not idle time wasting. It was meaningful leisure, and I already could feel, it was giving me the energy for the future work. Having felt hungry I rode the bike back into town. I returned it to my friend and invited him over for a quick snack. We came to my place and cooked a simplistic, but very natural lunch, containing mainly vegetables and some fish. I was consciously trying to follow the advice of Michael Pollan (2008), who has famously advice to eat food, and mainly stick to plants. I usually eat on the run. If I eat at home, I usually do it without even sitting down; I get something out of a fridge, and swallow it really quickly.

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I tried a few times to follow various “healthy nutrition”, but, together with Maslin (2008) I came to strongly believe: “that’s an eating disorder”. I rather came to understand, that eating and especially cooking is very close to art. Cooking is close to art creation, and eating is very similar to art appreciation. Now eating the way I usually eat is similar to replacing a masterpiece of cinematograph with a low quality movie. I had known this for a while, but still, I could not afford eating properly. This was, probably, my first normal lunch in years. I am grateful for an opportunity to have done this due to this assignment. I enjoyed the food outstandingly. I then enjoyed a walk with my friend. We visited a book store, where I bought a book of fiction. It was a Dickens’s novel. I love Dickens, and I think I’ve read almost all pieces by him. But then again I read them on my tablet. Reading hard copies has never been my habit. But I thought that it’d be nice to spend the rest of the evening with this paper book. And it was right. Besides the content there is great form about the book, and I enjoyed the smell, the sound and the view of pages. This also added value to my experience. I enjoyed spending a few hours of my “slow day” reading the book. As one can see, I did very little on this day, but these were meaningful hours, which I truly enjoyed.

Speaking of the impact of more people living slow life on the planet, I strongly believe, that the benefits of such a group habit are somewhat overestimated. And I particularly thought of it when I was buying my book. I thought on the one hand, that today I have saved our atmosphere from the unfortunate influence of a car engine, and this is, certainly, environmentally friendly. But then I bought a book, which is investing into the destruction of woods, instead of reading a digital copy and saving the paper and thus not participating in the killing of trees. I do not think the influence people are making on the nature can easily be estimated. There are too many factors which influence life of other species, ecological state of our planet and so on, and at the same time we know too little about such factors.

This is why any conclusions are too far reaching and very far from actual truth. I am not sure that truth even exists in this sphere of human knowledge. But what we do spoil by leading fast lives is our own mood, we live once and it is important to enjoy every day of our lives instead of trying to manage to do as many things as possible during the day without being even able to then remember what has been done. We also spoil our relations with one another. Our lives would certainly become more meaningful if we had more slow days. I would like to have more slow days in my life, and thus I have promised to myself to increase their number, but I am starting by having at least one slow day a month. I can afford it, and I do deserve it, I believe.

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