Possibility of stray golf balls. It may just have been a signpost I passed on my walk today down the side Prestwick St Nicholas Golf Club. It’s a walk I do almost daily, and I almost always take the same route as I wander. But today was different, I was walking as part of a guided Street Wisdom with the philosophy of answers being everywhere.
I left the house prompt at 3 pm, tuning in courtesy of our magical host Helen Amery. I’ve been in Helen’s company on a few occasions now and her soul always nourishes the space she enters. I’ve listened to her voice, read her words, observed her pace, and noticed the energy she enables. To allow us to discover the outer edges of our thoughts. Today I did just that.
She asked us to notice. To be drawn towards what we notice. It reminded me of one of my favourite ever quotes.
“Allow yourself to be silently drawn by strange pull of what you love”– Rumi
I noticed first the golfers, not a sport I’m keen on, to be honest, so I never tune in to the mechanical nature of what’s involved. I’ve never noticed the players consider the club choice like a Russian chess champion choosing their piece. I’ve never considered it a sporting equivalent of a trip to Ikea. Invited to only travel in a single direction as guided by the rules. Only leaving the path to hack out stray items to fulfil your final destination of 18th checkout. You even keep your score as you progress, writing down the number you need to collect your prize.
I started to observe a world crafted of strict directions. Road signs telling me how fast. Train lines keeping me between them. That golf course with each hole telling me how far I need to travel and a score to tell what good looks like. And then… that sign – the possibility of stray balls. It was trying to warn me about bending those same rules. It is indeed correct that a butadiene-coated rubber-centered ball travelling at 340km per hour would indeed cause me physical harm. But it’s the principle of stray movement that I’m tuning into. So in my Street Wisdom I decided to do that very thing, go rogue. Walk the same distance and direction I normally do but in new footprints. Only walking on routes and terrain I’d never travelled on before.
I’ve never walked this way before. I’ve never walked this way before. This new way was teaching me. I’ve never seen the beach look like this. Wild storms on the Western Isles earlier in the week had left seaweed piled high in mini salted mountains, climbing stairs and laying rich plum and deep muddy green blankets. At first, I was intimated by the kelp carpet, it looked so wild and untamed I walked away from it to keep to the path. Then I remembered Helen’s words to move towards what draws you in.
I should also add at this point my quest on my wisdom-powered pathway was to find the best way to juggle my ever-increasing business priorities. So I took a route I’ve never taken, around the sea wall where the tide normally crashes in against the old stone barriers. I discovered the answer I was seeking.
To kill my darlings, those things I’ve held onto for years because I’ve done them without ever questioning them. To walk away when people are wanting more and focus on the something new. When David Bowie killed Ziggy, people wanted more, but he didn’t. Not because he didn’t like or enjoy the art, he just felt life is too short to be one highlight. My answer was to walk on new grounds. I’ll never know what I’m capable of or desire unless I move toward the untrodden routes.
The second I discovered the answer I was free. I moved towards the seaweed, walking in its deepest tangles. It was bouncy like a trampoline, and colours rich and abundant, like a bright harris tweed – not the darker shades I saw from a distance.
As I bounced into my farewells to my new Street Wisdom friends I saw a sunset over Ailsa Craig. I reversed my camera for all to see. A final signal was setting on my career. Say farewell my old friend, hello new.