One of the questions I constantly ask myself when feeling restless is 'How can you feel discontent when you are better off than the majority of the population?'. This is exacerbated in both Portland and Cape Town where the homeless populations are high and very visible. My 15 minute walk to work in downtown Portland passes probably 10 people on street corners with signs asking for a $1 and another 10 in store doorways sleeping. This is despite (or maybe because of?) an enviable support structure for the homeless here. Shelters, soup kitchens, food banks, free coffees, dry cleaning (for the unemployed if they have a job interview) and more.
But restlessness isn't connected to money, 'stuff' or a standard of living, its something deep inside that your psyche that determines what makes you happy. What puts a smile on your face and means you wake up looking forward to the day. Bill Bryson said that we are on this earth for a millisecond of time, and we best make the most of it. You would have thought that with that opportunity we would all be grabbing life with both hands and living for the moment. Shouldn't we all live as though we've been given a death sentence, which is essence we have?
Having been in Las Vegas for 12 DAYS for the SHOT Show with Magnum Boots ending yesterday, for all it's evils and 'sins' it is a place where people live for the the moment. OK, its a generally debauched, immoral and wasteful moment, but whose to say they are wrong and we are right? Vegas is a want all, get all, whenever you want it environment. Yet 30 minutes from the Strip there is stunning natural landscape and one of the modern wonders of the world; the Hoover Dam. Both were packed with tourists, with queues leading to both.
The more time I spend here, the more I appreciate the diversity and contradictions. No more so than this last week where sin meets serenity.
|The Eiffel Tower, Statue of Liberty and the Colosseum all reside in LV|
|A modern wonder - Hoover Dam|