I went to bed last night a happy man. Having finally realised the goal of having my first novel in my hands in print, it felt like some form of justification for the effort.
I had intended rising this morning and addressing the need to think of ways to get it out into the world, as there would be no point writing it if no-one would ever get to read it.
Alas, the achievement had me feeling lazy, so I turned on the TV and enjoyed a breakfast in bed laid on by my significant other.
It wasn't long before I realised that an event had occurred. Japan had been rocked by an 8.9 magnitude earthquake, which had jolted the ocean upwards forming a tsunami, which wrecked havoc on the Japanese coastline and sent warnings to countries lying in far off places scattered across the Pacific.
The TV screen and the computer screen were soon displayed with scenes of amazement and horror in equal measure as tsunami waves raced toward the land, wave after wave rising high from the depths for as far as the camera lens would allow. It tore through the land, ripping everything in its path to shreds, be it tanker or car. It was frightening to watch.
The feeling of helplessness confirmed as we watched innocents racing from the torrents, being swallowed by it. By lunch, it seems the tsunami had petered out on it's ocean wide journey, not causing major damage to coastlines as far away as the United States.
The cost in human terms will only become apparent in the next few weeks, but for many Japanese people it is nothing less than cataclysmic. It put things into prospective for me anyway, and I'm sure Booker won't mind being put away for another few days.
It wasn't long before other people's thoughts were coming to light via the world wide web. I've read a good many 'theories' today. The Mayans got their customary mention as they would, so close to 2012 and their forecast of a Doomsday scenario befalling us all.
Some were blaming the Super Moon which radiates the night sky over the coming week. That's if one could see it through all the bleak clouds. That particular theory may hold more weight than some of the other reasoning's for today's events that people pull from their minds.
One American Channel concentrated solely on the economic fallout of this. I mean, wtf?
I came across a thread on Facebook where the question was of whether Ireland should send aid if required. Some argued we were not in a position to. Neither is the child starving to death in Africa, but what do you do?
Why does everything always revolve around money?. I mean come on, Nature can wipe us out whenever it decides, and for no reason, and we're worrying about whether we should aid people who have had there lives torn apart. Have we lost out humanity?
I guess there's a gratitude tonight that one has a roof over the head and food on the table, despite how difficult things have become and are likely to get.
One commenter said that the unemployed could be sent over to help on humanitarian grounds. Was probably the best idea I heard all day, and I'm pretty sure there would be no shortage of able and well-meaning volunteers, because for some, people will always be more important than money, even more so on this little island of ours.
I think writers question a lot of things, life included. Whether they admit it or not, or whether indeed they are writers or not, I think there is an inquisitive tendency in all human beings. I've certainly done my share of it, my search for answers never reaching any logical conclusion.
That was until I discovered a book on Philosophy, and I came across The Absurd, and an interest in those who philosophised on the subject. To date, it offers me more answers than any other form of teaching I've ever had drummed into me, or drummed into myself.
I've only touched on it for a few months, but it did come as a surprise to me that it was so close to the meaning I had for the absurd, without ever reading up on it. I guess if you live, you learn, and by seeking answers to questions, answers can be found that are not entirely based on systems which allow for little but a trust in the unknown.
Its always been my opinion that only when we have a humanitarian approach to civilisation can we save it in the long run. Planets are naturally angry and to think that we are anything other than fodder for nature's desires would be folly.
For whatever reason people base their beliefs I do think events of this nature are on the increase. Only weeks ago, Christchurch was levelled. This earthquake today was 8,000 times stronger. Even a human couldn't imagine having the power of that.
Living only gives us things, as well as its experience, for an undetermined term. Who can honestly say after that?
Perhaps answers will present themselves someday. Let's hope nature spares some of us until then. Humanity, for all its shame, has its graces. Graces worth preserving, if indeed at the end of the day its just for prosperity, where ever that may be.
For me all the good things in life at this time come free. For all its rain, I live in a pretty decent place. When that sun comes out its a land of wonder. It's also a world of wonder. I stood on top of the Empire State Building once and photographed the Twin Towers in 1999. It feels surreal even to this day. I thought that was the news event of my life, yet since then, the world has taken a very downward spiral. We gave up on something around that time. We had the tsunami in 2004 and the one today.
One of the fathers of the absurd Albert Camus said 'it is the beauty which people encounter in life that makes it worth living. People may create meaning in their own lives, which may not be the meaning of life (if there is one), but can still provide something for which to strive.'
That won't mean a lot to those unfortunate people today, but when it comes to finding reasons for avoiding ways to reason why these things happen, for me anyway, it's an important way of thinking sometimes.