In concluding the section on my body in this meditational journey, I want to look ahead. Why am I concerned about what happens to my body or how I treat it?
At my age I am conscious of how finite time is. I have lived a good many years and I want to live a good many more. I am conscious, however, that there is a limit to my life. I sense that limit getting closer. I am not concerned about it, I just want to enjoy the time I have and live it to the full.
I have been thinking a lot about what I want to do for the remaining years, how I want to live. Urmila and I have bought a house here in Spain. We are enjoying the process of settling in and re-creating it how we want it.
That gives a sense of certainty for our lives that neither of us have had for many years. It also allows us to move forward and develop some excitement and unceratinty in our lives. It encourages us to be adventurous and a little bit crazy.
I have been developing the idea of sustained, long-distance walking. The thought of it excites me.
The countryside in Spain is amazing, it is something I want to explore.
So I have developed the idea of walking round Spain. My current idea is to split the journey into four sections. Each section would take around six weeks to complete. As I live in one corner of Spain (the south east corner) I would walk one side of the country in each section. One of these would be the Camino to Santiago de Compostella.
The weather will only allow comfortable walking in the spring or autumn, so this project will take 2 years to complete. If I start in 2016 then I will complete it in my seventieth year. Planning is proceeding.
The key to completing my ambition is being fit, helthy and strong. That is where what I have been talking about over the last few days comes in.
Appreciating my body and changing my lifestyle to strengthen my body are essential. I have locked my future into this.
In my late thirties I received a phone call at work on my birthday. It was to tell me that my father had died suddenly over-night. He had a heart attack in his sleep and did not wake up. He was seventy two years old and was not ill.
He had lived a good life, but a busy one. He had retired to Scotland to relax and play a lot of golf. He was still young and not ready to die—and then he was gone. He missed out on many years of life with his grandchildren.
My grandchildren have just been born. I want to spend many years enjoying their company. I want to take them hill-walking around my house in Spain. I want to know them as they grow up.
Over these past few days I have become a lot more aware of my body. I have accepted its issues and sought ways to move forward with them. I think I live authentically when it comes to my physical life.
Now I just have to work in a consistent way to improve it.
Join me tomorrow when I start to look at my intellectual life.
- What long-term ambitions do you have?
- Do you need to do something before you can start them?
- What do want to be around for?