Sarah looked up at Paul, a now frail man however just as sharp as always, she hesitated and took the plunge and finally spat out what she had been wanting to say for the last hour, ‘I have to say, Paul, I read your novel at a very up and down time in my life and I hate to be melodramatic but I’ve been changing a lot lately… with my friendships and lifestyle and when I read certain parts of your work, they struck me and I found them so relatable. I found a sense of comfort and reassurance in your words.’
They were both quiet for a moment until Paul exhaled and asked the leading question, ‘and what parts were they?’ he said with a smile.
‘The way you spoke about mindfulness.. well I am not entirely sure that was the label you used but the way you referred to your peers as only being half present, being fragmented, not embracing their feelings. Your words all these later unfortunately still apply to our society and I’d have to say even more so.’
Paul nodded in agreement, closing his eyes and taking his hand slowly over his mouth as he continued to nod and encourage Sarah to go on.
‘It’s just… these days we hold our phones 24/7 and live such busy lives – well that’s what we tell ourselves. We run from place to place having no human interaction, instead spend our energy communicating through a phone. And when we are together we can’t distance ourselves from the device and if by chance you do, the conversation is about what’s next, what’s coming up, and how time poor we are. And I can’t say I’m not guilty of it, but I am aware of it, and I’ve tried to cut down over the last few months. And let me tell you, Paul, I’ve never been more calm, more peaceful…happier. Just like you said,”this is everything, just sitting in the quiet.” that is my favourite quote and I reckon it’s timeless.’
Paul looked deeply at Sarah for a second, ‘As I said it in my book, it is difficult to put into words, some criticise me for it, but I believe in expressing what I perceive to be reality.’
‘Yes I completely agree, I think people only see it as cynical because the truth hurts, deep down they know its true and people don’t like to face the reality. I’ve been doing a lot of reading, my favourite writer, Ariana Huffington and all the other writers talk about ways you can be more present, in the moment, and how beneficial it is.’ Sarah said with passion.
Paul replied, ‘It makes me happy to know my words are still relevant and capturing people. It is incredible that you can see what I was trying so hard to convey. Some people are aware, some are naive and some are hopeful. This whole ‘being present’ concept is something the Western world needs desperately. One person at a time I say Sarah.’
Sarah replied, ‘You couldn’t be more right Paul’. Paul was staring out the window now, as they sat there they fell into a comfortable silence, watching people roll in and out eating their lunch, drinking their coffee, they saw the birds fly and sit on the perch outside the cafe, they felt the sun come out from behind the clouds and shine its hot rays onto their bare arms. Both Sarah and Paul felt calm as the rhythm of their breath took control of their mind as it wandered peacefully.