Sunday, April 10, 2011

Island Time

Even though I loved the surf and the sun of Anna Maria Island the thing I'm missing the most, I think, is Island Time. Yep, time just didn't seem to matter much while we were there.

What's Island Time? It's more a feeling than a thing. It's all about forgetting about time and trying to get places. It's about forgetting you have a cell phone or clock. Its, well, a lot of things and probably something different for everyone. Perhaps I can explain what it is to me, at least somewhat, in pictures.

Island Time = Single speed bikes and pedaling slowly around town. 90% of the bikes I saw on Anna Maria Island were single speed bikes. I only saw two road bikes and rarely saw anyone pedal faster than 10 mph. I liked wandering around on my rental bike. I liked getting lost. I liked moving slowly. It was relaxing. It was fun.

Island Time = Reading Time (or DS Time, in Ryan's case). Sitting Still Time. It stormed the first full day of our vacation. And while the rain was a bummer it also forced us to sit still awhile. To be instead of do.

Island Time = Family time. Game time. Together time. We listened to music. We ate together. Owen played card games with the kids.

Island Time = Trolley time. No need for a car on the island, there was a free trolley to take us around town. Sure we had to wait for it but since we weren't worried about being anywhere on time it didn't really matter what time the trolley arrived. If I lived on Anna Maria, I would hardly use a car - between a bike and the trolley I'd be set! (oh, and with all the walking, biking, and beach time I'd be in awesome shape!!!)

Island Time = Beach Time. And Family Time. And long walks in the morning. And Rose and I catching perfect waves on our rented boogie boards (and, in my case, crashing brilliantly a few times!). We looked for shells. We played in the sand. We didn't sleep in too late because the beach called to us each morning. We slept well at night because the outdoor activity had us tired and ready for bed.

So how can I bring Island Time to my life now?  I don't have a beach at home nor do I have a trolley. Riding a single speed bike 15 miles into town to do errands isn't practical. I'm still playing catch up on my writing work that accumulated while I was gone. And there's laundry. And a house to clean. And food to make and....well, a whole lot of stuff to do. Island Time like I enjoyed it on Anna Maria Island isn't really possible in Webster, Minnesota.

But maybe I can incorporate some elements of Island Time in my life. I can start by ignoring my cell phone more often. I don't have to have it with me, nor do I need to check email on it when I'm on the go. I can allow myself some time to sit still and read. I can spend more time "being" with my family than "doing" with my family. I can slow down. Garden more. Work less. Listen to the kids tell me stories because, before you know it, they'll be grown up and gone from home.

And I can do what I did tonight. Feeling somewhat frazzled with family matters and things to do, I jumped on my bike and pedaled around my neighborhood. Just two miles. Just twelve minutes. Just enough time for a mini escape from the day. I'm not on an island nor is it likely I will be again for quite some time -  but I feel a whole lot better now.


Nina Patten said...

Perfect post for me tonight. Having spent Feb (for our 6th year) on AMI with Mom, I am now thinking of the past 3 weeks of her hospitalization as yet another "island" time. We look for little things and enjoy every moment together.

Loving the Bike said...

You just have to know that anything with the title "Island Time" is going to grab my attention. Great post, Myrna and I loved all your beautiful definitions.

I catch myself being off "Island Time" a little too often and my wife is always there to remind me to relax....and tell me that I need to go back to the beach for a while.