do you ever wonder about the origin of words? today i’ve been pondering umbrella. and getting nostalgic for the heavy tomes of physical encyclopaedias and dictionaries that i could thumb through to find such things out. an internet search doesn’t have the same seductiveness even if the answer is easier to find. i consider the pleasure of finding things out and wonder if anyone else thinks about how much more pleasurable it is to ponder a question without ever knowing the answer. does not knowing the origin of the word umbrella make the object itself any less useful? does my perception of it change when i know it’s providence? would i handle it with more reverence the more knowledge i have of its ancestry? it’s never mattered before, why should it now?
i’m edging towards the end of the day and feeling the word surrender in my sternum. there’s sunlight reflecting off the water as we cross the harbour between mainland and island and i am holding my emotions up for scrutiny. was today a good day? was it a successful day? have i done enough? what more do i need to ask of myself before tumbling off the edge of the day into sleep? how does one determine the answers to these questions? they’re not available in any encyclopaedia save the one i write for myself with the ink of my individual experiences.