About six weeks ago I realized that I was never taking the time to do and see things that I want to do and see. Outside of work and family, I didn’t do a lot of extra. I’d hang out with friends occasionally, take in a movie here and there, check out a nice restaurant, etcetera. However, I’d rarely go see that art exhibit I’d been dying to see, or hit the bike trail, go to the beach, or…just do the things that were extra, yes, but didn’t take a whole lot of extra effort.
I am now taking the time to do those sorts of things, things that you tell yourself can wait. Recently I started taking my exercise on the lakefront again. It’s a gorgeous view and rejuvenating. Yet, because my new place has a gym, I’d not been along the lakefront since last year. An entire year. Pure wastefulness.
On that same subject of wasteful, I also visited the Art Institute of Chicago two weeks ago. It’s right in the city (we’re soooo lucky), but though I love it, I haven’t been in at least two years. Last month I noticed that there were two exhibits that I’d enjoy: one featuring artist Charles White’s work, and the other featuring John Singer Sargent’s work. Two weeks ago I was downtown for something else and had to pass the AIC to get home. I made the decision to go in, spent five wonderful hours inside and discovered another exhibit that they hadn’t advertised. Called Never a Lovely So Real, it features film and photography in Chicago from 1950-1980. It was fascinating, and topped off the day perfectly.
This is my own personal era of doing. I’m calling it an era because the word “phase” connotes a brief lifespan and I hope to “do the extra” as a way of life now. Next up: the Ebony and Jet archives, the American Writers Museum, swimming lessons, the South Side Community Art Center, whatever I take a fancy for.