Connectivity. A time to reconnect with nature. A time to disconnect from the internet. Like the true Romantic literary tradition, the emphasis here has been on the individual in nature. I secretly like to think of my time here as a form of rehabilitation. Maybe I am one step closer to becoming a hermit or a monk. Everybody else here has remained connected to the internet except for me because my phone is locked. Matthew, Leihlani, and Madelynne are Australian nationals with data plans, and Charonthorn, the other foreigner, has a plan too, but in fact it does not load any data at all. It amazes me how in this one regard I cannot pride myself in saying I will not go with the flow, for it is impossible these days to go without contacting someone or looking up something or applying for grants and residencies online like Madelynne has been doing all along; it is an absolute necessity, and yet I have managed to do so.
I cannot speak for the others, but this disconnection has forced me to reconnect with nature and appreciate it more, regressing to another time, focusing more on creative outlets, and reevaluating how I spend my time back home in urban life. Nevertheless, as everyone knows it is a great maddening challenge to fight a daily habit or obsession. Here I have felt the same kind of curiosity, loneliness, and longing I feel in New York even when surrounded by 8 million people, which is falsely satisfied with internet and easy access to social media, although perhaps it has been more pronounced here 10,000 miles away in a remote secluded location, but sometimes my mind is like that anyway and this is an ever-present form of inspiration.
Friday night we share one last communal dinner over wine and pasta discussing a wide range of topics. Even as solitary independent figures we still crave and seek interactions from time to time, and in departing from this land I feel a ghost is left in this village, through the connectivity of sound, the connectivity of vision, the connectivity of image-making, the connectivity of collage, the connectivity of the environment, the connectivity of electricity, the connectivity of cobwebs that appear electric, the connectivity of food, and the connectivity of history conveyed through memory, association, and other figments and phantasms of the imagination. I am thankful for this condition, for this freedom, for this independence, for this opportunity, for this hospitality, and this experience of producing and sharing uninterrupted work, along with giving my first artist talk with a young group of hopeful art students. It is now time to resume the journey back home.