Unplugged and off trail

This site’s been silent for a bit, mostly because I’ve been too busy living to think much about writing.

Oddly, I seem all the busier now that I am without my full-time day job.

As of the 29th of November, my position as Director of Social Media for Canoe.ca was terminated in a corporate re-think, and my 3 1/2 years with that company came to a painless and amicable end. The photo above shows the view looking backward along King Street as the sun set on my time with Sun Media Inc.

I made my happy way home over the Queen Street bridge. Its sculptural and textual evocations of past, present and place seemed particularly “timely” in that moment. I thought about the instant when now becomes then, and snapped a few pictures. I haven’t looked back since.

There was no sadness for me. Not even nostalgia. I’d already sort of said goodbye to The Canoe Dossier, the pride and joy of my time online over the past few years, in a prescient post called Internet Overload. Over the course of a few days after leaving, I lifted a glass with a few friends at Betty’s, handed in my iPhone, cleaned the Canadiana out of my office and headed off “kicking stones down the road,” as the saying goes.

My heart was light.

Since then, I’ve been pretty much unplugged. I still log on, but I don’t live online. It’s a funny, familiar feeling, and a good one.

Time’s slowed down. My vision is more focused on people’s faces when we speak. When I drop into the coffee shop it’s an open ended conversation, not just fuel for the day ahead.

I feel like my ears and heart are ready for the subtle tasks of music and writing in a way they never were, or would have been while I was being paid to be plugged into the web for 50 hours a week.

There will be some adjustments to make, mostly about handling anxiety: where’s the money going to come from? But for millions of years millions of God’s creatures have made it from day to month to year without ever worrying overly about sustenance. I trust I’ll be taken care of. I’m resourceful, and blessed, and nature is abundant.

There are great adventures ahead, building Roots Music Canada, making an album, writing a book or two, maybe even teaching a bit. And who knows what else?

In the meantime it’s a blessing to see things develop at nature’s pace, rather than at the speed of man’s media madness.

There are only three things I miss: the fact that the Canoe crew ALWAYS left too much money on the table after rounds of drinks; the privilege of writing for a national publication; and the good honest ritual of walking to work in my grandfather’s footsteps.

I guess I’ll make some new paths of my own, now that I’m unplugged. I feel great about that. After all, I may have some grandchildren of my own one day.

They may get a kick out of walking where my feet were the first to tramp the trail.

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