September

I threw open the balcony doors, first thing, to feel a rush of crisp September air over my skin. It was glorious. I have always loved the bright almost Autumnal mornings where the chill in the air prickles my skin out of complacence. I love having my skin surrounded by the warmth of a sunny midsummer morning, precious because only for a few weeks of the year is it even possible we’ll have that in the UK and even then it is contingent upon ever changing air pressure. Nearly autumn, though, brings a clarity and an awakening that I find delightful. Summer heat is relaxing. Autumn is stimulating.

I recalled another recent experience of sensation that thrilled me. I was in the Grange gardens craft shop and stumbled on beautiful glass coasters made by an artist whose name I cannot remember (sorry!) They were so beautiful I wanted to touch one. I chose one made mostly of clear glass, rounded and smooth like a sea tumbled pebble and not cut smooth like window glass.

I was captivated by gold leaf within the glass, slightly wrinkled, creating a texture I could imagine feeling. A shock ran all the way up my arm as I touched the object and felt smooth, organically shaped glass instead of the crinkled metal. Of course I should have known, but what I saw was so clear, the invitation of the gold leaf to a landscape of such depth and tonality that I had imagined the sensation of exploring it with my fingers and was thrown when I felt something different.

It was a fantastic example of cognitive dissonance perfectly crystallised in a few seconds of my life. This has left me wondering if the sensations I enjoy most include some dissonance. Perhaps only the sensations I find most stimulating, because being enveloped in the warmth of the sun or the arms of a loved one is also a cherished sensation for me and precisely for its lack of dissonance.

Ah, this journey of being a human being! Touch and sensation is so important, it is when and where I am happiest and most alive.

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