The absurdity of life.

In Albert Camus’ essay, ‘The Myth of Sisyphus’ he wrote “the world evades us because it becomes itself again”. Of the absurdity of life, he reasons that our “extreme consciousness” justifies thought. Why else do we consider life and our place in it, other than the pure magic of the ability to think, to contemplate?
In my experience, partnering with the exquisite unpredictability of life renders one malleable, and to be malleable to the constant unknown is at least to accept life for what it is; a daily occurrence of events that are both in and beyond my control. How absurd.

On the 12th of March, 2020 I set off to Perth to spend my 27th birthday with a man that loved diving into the ocean where the crayfish mingle deep, such was his emotions, nestled intricately in the many shades of blue. I was writing freely at the time as he was eclipsed by nature’s wonder and sorcery. Yet, in this bliss of presence and truths, there was something unspoken, and remains still today, unknown.. the only reasoning to be seen is that the absurdity of life was at hand.

While at Rottnest Island one casual sunny Friday, now the 13th, the majestic beauty with a past, both buried and alive, revealed an invitation. The souls, the guides, and the ghosts became one and there was a new place to go. Mark decided we weren’t to be and we cast our relationship back to the sea. This gesture of a closing book had only one path, forward, I slipped gently into the solitude I knew so well, back to my studio apartment in Melbourne.

‘Lone drifter washed to shore once more, equally anchored and free’
Rottnest Island, 13.03.20

In the handful of days that followed the unforeseen (to most of us) virus had entered our borders and was flowing across the nation in a way that changed our lives forever. For me, loss of work, home as I knew it, and a city that made me a woman. The only place to go was North, back to the place that was woven with memories and people I was before.

By late March I was settling into Palm Beach with an aunty, a bottle of scotch, and a pain in my heart. I did not know who I was becoming but I felt that the answer was on its way, somehow. The ocean was my dearest friend, comforting me in daily baptisms, usually around 2pm and often without neighbors, for they were all indoors. Sun, salt, and sweet notes to self were all I had to hold. Then I met Hareesh. Without details, because this page is still unwritten, I can express with a faithful heart that meeting this man was my destiny. He was embedded into the invitation, the one that was handed to me on the boat. And so, I spent a year and a half in Queensland, a place I never desired to live again but so strong was the call to love… to listen, to pause and to re-imagine.

As I type this, it is the 18th December 2021, we are six days into our new life in Western Australia, for work and nature. It is mid-morning and I am looking out at Rottnest Island from an apartment in the heights of Fremantle. Although its ruggered edges are not seen, engulfed with grey and rain, it is clear to see that life is etched with choices and chance, and both are dear to me.

“From the evening breeze to this hand on my shoulder, everything has its truth. Consciousness illuminates it by paying attention to it. Consciousness does not form the object of its understanding, it merely focuses, it is the act of attention and, to borrow a Bergsonian image, it resembles the projector that suddenly focuses on an image. The difference is that there is no scenario but a successive and incoherent illustration. In that magic lantern all the pictures are privledged. Consciousness suspends in experience the objects of attention. Through its miracle it isolates them. Henceforth they are beyond all judgements. This is the ‘intention’ that characterizes consciousness. But the word does not imply any idea of finality; it is taken in its sense of ‘direction’ : its only face value is topographical.”

Camus, A. The Myth of Sisyphus, p.44-45

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