Does it imply a hermit in the distant mountains?
It was around 8pm and I was waiting for word from a ship called The Antarctic Dream in Dorion Bay, Antarctica. They had just finished The Last Desert race, and I was waiting – as the 'remote writer' for the event - for news from a laptop at the southernmost tip of the planet, to bounce messages off a satellite in outer space and bring information to my Mac in Maine. So that I could then distribute these words to minds in 22 countries.
It wasn't quite working... there was a glitch in the system, an oddly-aligned planetary shift, and so the news was not quite coming through. And for a second, those runners in the White Continent became truly remote. They fell out of contact. They fell through the illusion and disappeared.
And I pondered what it meant - at that very moment - for me to be the remote writer of this event? Who was remote now? I considered how technology allows us to remain connected - when it decides to work, that is. And suddenly now, in today's world, to be remote is to be immensely connected. To be present - beyond our physical presence. To being a hologram, a globally-connected butterfly, whose real location is in a still forest yet who flies by night through cityscapes.
In the past few weeks, something has shifted. I am still sitting in the quiet hermit's cave, but I am simultaneously flying around the world and communing with all manner of characters. I am reporting on racers at the South Pole, chattering with my colleague in Hong Kong and brainstorming with a friend in New Zealand about our fabulous new project. I am in all of these places.
Yet, I have not left the building.
Is it karma that decides that one day you will be solitary and the next that you will burst into a web of life?
(Credit: isconti-Sforza tarot deck. Hermit. 15th century)