“For fast-acting relief try slowing down.” ~ Lily Tomlin
This Christmas, like this year, is turning out to be very different than any other Christmas. The Simon and Garfunkel “The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy) which begins, “Slow down, you move too fast” keeps running through my head because for the first time in our married lives, Barry and I are completely relaxed about shopping online, taking time to do the decorating, and watching all the Christmas movies on our enormously long list.
Since our list is so long, normally I don’t watch very many new Christmas movies. But for some reason, I decided to record a Lacey Chabert Christmas movie right after Thanksgiving. It’s from last year. Lacey happens to be one of our favorite actresses that’s why I thought I’d take a chance on it. This one is Christmas in Rome. In a way, it’s the typical Hallmark Christmas movie, but when I sat down to watch it I was pleasantly surprised. The movie is about Oliver, played by Sam Page, a New York business man who works for an acquisition company. His boss wants him to go to Rome to buy a very old and famous, high end ceramics company. Oliver is all about cutting to the chase and making the deal. That’s why he’s up for promotion to vice-president. But, when he meets Angela, who is an American living in Rome and working as a tour guide, he learns that the way business is conducted in Italy is completely foreign to him. He hires Angela to help him appreciate Rome’s slower pace of life so he can make the deal. Along the way he learns to enjoy himself and, of course, Angela’s company.
On a tour of the ceramics works, Luigi Forlinghetti, tells Oliver that his policy is to hire artists and then give them all the time they need to create their works of art. In Oliver’s mind this is not a good business policy, but when he sees the one of a kind Christmas ornaments and all the other stunning work the artists produce, he begins to change his mind. Maybe Luigi is right, slowing down to create something extraordinary is more beneficial to the world than mass producing ordinary items that become ubiquitous. I’m sure you’re not surprised when I say, that’s the theme of the movie.
My husband is an artist. Though he’s a great graphic artist, his first love is producing pottery. He understands that if you want to make beautiful things, you can’t just slap them together. You have to take your time and make sure you are present to the creative process at each stage of production.
I think many Americans are too impatient. We want instant gratification and don’t value things that cost a little more because they are made with love and care. And, it seems to me that before the virus, our culture encouraged us to “get ‘er done”, rather than to slow down and enjoy the moment. Now we’ve been forced to slow down and I for one am taking stock of what has been good about my life, and what needs changing. And the thing I’m appreciating most now is the slower pace. I won’t say my life is completely free of stress, but I do have more time to do the things I love. At the end of my life, I want to be happy that I took time to appreciate my relationships, my creative endeavors, and the beauty of the world around me. I’d rather be the tortoise and take my time getting to the finish line.
What are the lessons this year has taught you? I’d be interested to know.
Christmas is coming. Have a blessed week. I hope you are able to enjoy the day and connect with family and friends, even if it’s only virtual.
Lucinda Sage-Midgorden © 2020
Lucinda is the author of The Space Between Time, an award finalist in the “Fiction: Fantasy” category of the 2017 Best Book Awards.
Have you ever experienced life shattering events? Yeah, most of us have. In The Space Between Time, Jenna Holden gets slammed by her fiancé walking out, her mother’s untimely death, and losing her job all in one week. But she receives unexpected help when she finds her three-times great-grandmother’s journals and begins the adventure of a lifetime.
The Space Between Time is available in all ebook formats at Smashwords and for Kindle at Amazon, or you can find the ebook at iBooks or Barnes and Noble. If you prefer a physical copy, you can find a print-on-demand version at Amazon. Stay tuned for news when the audiobook version is published.
Lucinda is also the host of Story-Power a new podcast where she and her guests discuss the stories in all formats that have changed their lives. It’s available here on Sage Woman Chronicles and on Apple, Google, and Spotify podcast apps. Please rate and leave a review. It helps people find me.