Time is an interesting concept that is currently under scrutiny in the lives of the Price duo. One such reason for this review on all things chronological is that Slovaks and Canadians tackle time in two distinct manners. With the strengthening of the EU, Slovaks sense of time is beginning to match those of traditional Westernized nations; but it’s not quite there yet. Spending time with family, friends or extended lunches often pushes back other regularly scheduled events. Though this may smack of Pleasantville-esque greatness, try inserting two type-A personalities into the mix who scheduled a meeting for 1pm sharp…
It is a blow to the tick-tock superiority of the clock, but we’re working on it!
Time is a lens through which we filter nearly every element of life. For us it has been quite easy to compartmentalize life thus far: childhood – elementary school – high school – college – apprentices in Canada – apprentices in Slovakia. Even on a relational level we can fragment our time together: 3 years of dating in college – 1 year of engagement – 1 year of marriage completed. This divide-and-conquer approach to life could go on and on and on…school semesters – seasons – work contracts – years – months – weeks – days. And then we wonder why we can only look at things as pieces rather than as an element of a whole.
In talking with friends the other day we realized we have allowed our worldview to be centered around pieces of time – life chunks. We are in our 7th month here in Slovakia and there are times when our thoughts dwell on the reality that our apprenticeship will conclude in 17 months and then God only knows where we will be (literally). Of course, we often have these thoughts right after our language lesson! The potential for the temporary nature of our time here changes how we think (and maybe how people view us – why invest if it is not permanent?).
When you move into a new place, one of the last tasks is to hang pictures. Something about putting a hole in a wall makes every transition feel more lasting. So it is true – we may only be here in Slovakia for a maximum of 2 years, but we are where we are supposed to be. We must inhabit our time here, settle in, branch out, take possession, grow to feel at home and of course, hang pictures.
PS – for the record this is very metaphorical, our walls have been well decorated since week 1