“The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.”
–Alfred North Whitehead

Welcome to London…

…where the wifi’s free and the weather’s not half as good as Miami. I’ve arrived! Well, sort of. I’m stuck waiting at Paddington Station for my 1pm train to Totnes. I didn’t get any sleep on the flight, but I did watch two decent movies: finally saw “2012,” which was entertaining, but I was over it the 8th time a plane was nearly swallowed by a giant plume of volcanic ash as the runway crumbled beneath it; then there was “The Lovely Bones,” the story of a 14 year old girl who was murdered and became stuck between heaven and earth trying to understand her death. It left me wondering just how thin the veil might be, especially when that most transcendent of emotions–love–stretches between this side and the other.

Time to find a restroom. Over and out.







8 responses to “Welcome to London…”

  1. Bart Segall Avatar

    Too bad you couldn’t sleep. Was the plane full? Did they feed you?

  2. Leland BeBee Avatar
    Leland BeBee

    I’m sure everyone is happy the Atlantic didn’t swallow you up en route to London — I don’t recall if you went directly out of Florida, but that pesky “Bermuda Triangle” that was once all the rage (I date myself, I’m sure) couldn’t have been far….

    No surprise you didn’t sleep on the plane — I was always adrenalated on my trans-Atlantic flights, and on one I got to see the most amazing Aurora Borealis for hours on end. But what a combination of movies — makes one wonder who makes such decisions?! 2012 is, needless to say, a movie before its time riding the wave of apocalyptic interest converging from every quarter. Back in the 50’s a movie came out called “When Worlds Collide.” It was “apocalyptic,” had its set of special effects, and also involved something akin to “arks.” But the earth really ended. The stragglers had to move to another world. 2012 was so over the top with catastrophe and cataclysm and the protagonists were so miraculously spared at the last minute so many times, that in the audience when I went to see it on first run, there were some of us chortling or slapping our knees, or poking our neighbor with an elbow while shooting rolled-eye glances. For me it diminished the real concerns about a possible apocalypse and the need to prepare realistically for the disasters that do regularly happen to people. Ah well — Hollywood.

    The Lovely Bones, however, does pose interesting questions, although through a somewhat disconcerting, but novel approach. In response to the movie and your reflection, I’d posit that the least that can be said about life is that it is always — all the time and in most every way — more than it seems. The physics, chemistry, and biology of being is operating well beneath consciousness most of the time. Science struggles and gets us part way to understanding, but it is as yet incomplete and vastly variable sensitive. Conciousness and emotional states, however subject to describable experience and theoretical projection, operate, in fact, for the most part in streaming and cycling fashion little attended to moment-by-moment but nevertheless the subject of amazingly disparate theories when given general or specific, individual attention by the “experts.” So, for now, wtill, mystery is really omnipresent, if we simply accept the limits of our knowledge at any particular time. So, life/death? — ongoing being beyond the end of a physical body’s existence? Ongoing consciousness? Why not? Some evidence of the possibility exists in the physically-observable realm. Some evidence exists through centuriies’ reported “paranormal” phenomena. The true question lurking seems to me not whether “something” continues, but what that continued something implies about the definition and meaning of life. And that, as we all already know, is THE QUESTION every religion tackles and probably every living human being at least fleetingly approaches at least once in a lifetime.

    Matt: Glad you’re there and safe. We’ll all be interested to hear each vignette you’ll be inspired to share — even if its a local pub recommendation! Hope you still will get the webposts and your emails timely, but do realize no one will expect you to diminish your journey in order to keep up your usual diligence in replies correspondence.

    Have a great time!

    Always and always,


    1. matthewdsegall Avatar


      I must admit that it was I who made the movie selections. Virgin Atlantic has every seat outfitted with its own screen and a server loaded full of movies. After watching 2012, I decided I needed something with fewer explosions and with a bit more of a contemplative plot. The Lovely Bones more than fit the bill.

  3. Artemis Avatar

    Happy summer solstice!! If you see Sue in the Isles, give her a hug from me. We had the most amazing time at James’ place, and I look forward to swapping stories of our adventures this summer (maybe in the desert?? 🙂 although the Quest has to be experienced to be believed – just ask Sue about how enchanted the land is in Miss.

    ~~Artemis (aka “Frog” 🙂

    1. matthewdsegall Avatar

      Thanks Artemis! Ah yes, are you planning on heading to the desert end of August? It’ll be my first burn! Hope to see you there.

  4. ashramdiary Avatar

    Your first travel post confirms one’s estimation of you as a mature diarist — you have already discovered that journaling is a poetic genre. All us fellow listeners and learners look forward to YouTube videos, once you’ve settled in at Totnes.

    1. matthewdsegall Avatar

      Thank you, Thomas! Good to hear from you and I can’t wait to get to Italy! I don’t think I’ll be able to post any videos, but I’ll be posting to my blog as often as possible!

  5. Joe Norman Avatar
    Joe Norman

    Matty, hope your travels are going well my friend. I bet you’re having a blast. Looking forward to hearing about all you learn from being immersed in the continental ways.


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