Saturday, 7 November 2009

i've just finished reading a mammoth novel called Shantaram. in it the protagonist talks about beginnings and pin points some beginnings in his life.
i dont think i can pinpoint any beginnings. turning points yes, but not beginnings and i'm not sure why i view the two as different. maybe a beginning requires an ending and i haven't seen the end points to the turns, if you know what i mean.
if i had gone to university my life might still have been one of family and work, thats pretty common to the human experience, but it would have been populated by different people and that is guaranteed. different people might have meant a very different family and a very different job and a totally different life.................
having said all of that i dont regard the decision not to go to uni as a beginning, just a choice.
can you name any beginnings in your life?


  1. Looks like an interesting read. You know I love reading, but have so many on the go. Sometimes I am just reading for a deadline, which is probably not the best way.

    Beginnings? I suppose I think of life as a piece of amateurish knitting, knitted very fast to try to finish it, but dropping lots of stitches along the way. I am going back and picking up those dropped threads and it is a sort of beginning- like learning to dance after so many years.

    It's not too late to go to uni you know. You are an intelligent woman. You should not be bound by chores and responsibilities. never too late. how much do you want it, is the question. How much do you want it Kylie?

    I have toyed with the idea. To have the luxury of studying poets! That would be heaven! I decided though, that I am who I am, and my work defines me and inspires me. I am bound in a way in my working life, but the experiences I have had in meeting the people that I have has been blessing after blessing in so many ways. I wouldn't take that away.

  2. I have seen this book but the size of it has put me off reading it.
    in fact i have seen it on a couple of the residents bedside tables and wonder if they ever finish it.
    The beginning for me was going on the i.v.f program and my determination to not give up. Helen is my pride and joy.

  3. hey cinnamon,
    i dont regret my decision about uni, just wonder what might have been different .....

    i reapplied about 5 years ago and for two years running but was knocked back both times and decided it wasnt the right time.

    your knitting metaphor is a clever one, i wonder what stitches i might pick up?

  4. hey jo!
    it was a very big book but easy to read. give it a go!
    yes, ivf is a journey and a half as i understand, that beginning was a special one for sure!

  5. I can think of lots of beginnings in a strictly physical sense - meeting Jenny, becoming a bookseller, becoming a charity worker, moving to Belfast, starting a blog. But I suppose the more important beginnings are the emotional and psychological ones, which are harder to pin down. I would certainly include my intellectual and spiritual flowering during the sixties and seventies, when I came across so many eye-opening new ideas and viewpoints and aspirations.

    Beginnings or turning points? Hard to distinguish. I would say a beginning is a completely new venture while a turning point is a new direction in something you're already doing.

  6. I agree with you, for me they are turning points, the turning points have added to who I am but they are continuous, not ends or beginnings... nothing is taken away or stopped. Surely without an end you can't have a beginning? Ohh that's almost a scary physics question!

    I suppose a 'beginning' would be becoming a mother, but that would imply, to me, that the me before motherhood had 'ended'... I think not!!! :D

    Sometimes I wish parts of my past had truly ended - that silly kid who hid from all her peers in the playground for instance, I would love for that to have ended... but even though it physically has, it will always live on somewhere deep under the surface, like a cut that fades to a scar but never disappears.

  7. nick,
    i agree that there are lots of beginnings but when i cant identify the ends to match i wonder if it could be called a beginning

    oh man.....
    tell me to shut up!

  8. abi!
    it is indeed like physics

    you get me! only i cant call motherhood a beginning because it wont ever end

  9. Very. Very. Interesting! I like to look at every day as a beginning. It's something that came by accident. I worked with a very high level of poverty population. With that, came different values, survival, etc. In my way of trying to learn and trying to teach came communication. Sometimes it isn't about talking but listening. I would try to guide and let every child know that tomorrow is a new day. Sometimes every person needs to know that they get another chance and a clean slate no matter the choices made.

  10. "Chapter One. I am born."

    I don't think I can pinpoint any beginnings, either. Things just happened, you know?

    But yeah, if I'd gone to class instead of to parties, things would have been a lot different!

  11. But surely you could only identify the ends if you were a clairvoyant?

  12. merely me,
    another take on the theme! i didnt think of fresh starts

  13. megs,
    i went to class but i still cant identify beginnings :)

  14. nick,
    some people seem to identify endings, after they happen of course

  15. I believe I can identify beginnings that haven't yet ended. They're things that I sometimes think about as I look back over my life. But I've always been one who lives in the future and rarely notice beginnings when they begin. Life is what happens while you're making other plans.


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