March Blog- Time in the Jungle

Hello again!

I am coming to the end of my blogs, with one left after this; how the year flys by. This month, we are writing about a piece of creative work from our gap year that particularly resonated with us. This is particularly good timing, as I have just returned from the second of four programs I am doing, so it’s fresh in my head. The work I’ll be talking about is a book; “The Order of Time” by Carlo Rovelli. I picked this book up from a shop that I usually visit specifically for something to read on this trip; it’s a book by a physicist deconstructing what time really is. Needless to say 2/3 of the book flew straight over my head, but I do feel I caught the gist. In this book, it is explained how much of a man made concept time is, and how subjective and inconsistent it really is when you look at it closely.

The trip I was on at the time was a conservation volunteer position in the remote jungle of Costa Rica, hours away from any other people; truly the middle of nowhere. On top of that, I had essentially no internet, with the exception of a few hours on Thursdays when I walked the 15 1/2 miles to town. As a result of this very unusual living situation, I experienced time like I never have before. We all got up in a similar time frame, between 3:30 to 5:30 AM to be ready for work when the sun came up. All our meals were about 3 hours earlier than the rest of the world. I would spend hours looking at birds or walking the beach, but it never “felt” like a lot of time. The entire base was asleep by 9PM at the latest. The most interesting part is that it felt perfectly normal. I got the experience first hand how time is a human convention, which we can change as we see fit.

See you all next month, Owen Jackson

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