I spent a few days on Sutton Island this past week, after an intensive stretch of non-stop activity. You know the kind. My first two days I was alone, a rare situation for me on the island. On the first day I decided to take a walk around the east end loop without my phone.
The number of times I reached for that darn slab of plastic and metal was embarrassing.
How far have I walked? What time is it? Oh, that's beautiful; where's my camera? Has anyone texted me? Have I done Wordle today?
Sutton reminds me to sit still, put my phone away, and immerse in the light and shadow of fall. Watch the gulls, eagles, osprey, heron, cormorants, loons, songbirds, and seals - all going about their lives, busy working, eating, interacting - without a thought for what's happening in some electronic other-world. The physical world is a good one, and we miss too much of it. It's our home. You'll remember it, if you give it your attention.
Take a deep breath, Robin. Slow down. Immerse in the air of autumn. Can you find a time to turn off the electricity and simply be present with the natural world? I aspire to do it, but often fail. I wish you all the balm of "disconnection" too, which really means, the balm of reconnecting to the physical world.
Robin Clifford Wood is an award-winning author, poet, and writing teacher. She lives in central Maine with her husband, loves to be outdoors, and enjoys ever-expanding horizons through her children, grandchildren, and granddogs.