Most every day, Pierluigi accompanies me on my walk up to Livadia. Generally, I have an idea as to what topic to use for my daily posts regarding these walks. Pierluigi is a true scholar and like a walking Wikipedia–he knows something just about everything. So today the topic was “arrival” in reference to the part of my walk when I finally arrive at Krios and I asked Pier if he could tell me anything of a philosophical nature regarding the concept of arrival. So, BOOM, he hits me with Aristole’s telos (“end”), the telos being the goal or purpose of a thing, the final cause. Because an arrival implies an end.
Well, it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for as the final cause of my walk is not arriving at Krios but what happens in my head while I’m getting there. The arrival is just a form of measurement—the time it takes for the round-trip of getting there and getting back is the time span I allow myself for thinking and meditating.
I would like to be able to BE HERE NOW more often, to live the moment without anticipation. But it seems that, like most of us, I often live my life here while wanting to be there.
Nikos Kazantzakis, known mainly for “Zorba The Greek”, said:
I felt once more how simple a thing is happiness: a glass of wine, a roasted chestnut, a wretched little brazier, the sound of the sea. Nothing else. And all that is required to feel that here and now is happiness in a simple, frugal heart.
The above foto is of me taken a few years ago. I still use the same dress, bandana, knapsack and shoes! Look at the difference in the wall graffiti from then and now.
Arrival at Krios is marked by a house that sits next to the steps going down towards the beach. There’s a carob tree that doubles as an auditorium for singing cicadas. Cicadas live about 17 years underground sucking tree sap for their survival. Then, in a kind of rapture, they all come out in hoards and, from larvae, turn into winged insects. The males immediately start singing looking for a mate. The hotter the weather, the louder they sing. After mating, the females deposit their eggs in the tree. This goes on for about 2-4 weeks and then telos, it’s all over and the cicadas die because they’ve arrived at the final cause.
the carob tree
There is a well-known mariachi song about the cicada, “La Cigarra” and is the source of today’s mantra.
I sing happily, sing, sing, happily sing sing.