Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Life's Turning Points

Author's Note in Yann Martel's 'The Facts Behind the Helsinki Roccamatios' begins like this:

When I was in my second year of university, aged nineteen, my studies ground to a halt. Just as the curtain was lifting on my adult life, with promises of untold freedom, what I might do with that freedom began to trouble me. I had always expected academic degrees--a bachelor's, a master's, a Ph.D. -- to be the banister that would steady me up the steps of my successful life. But that year I stared at paragraphs of Immanuel Kant in a state of dumb incomprehension, I failed two courses and the banister fell away. The view gave me vertigo.

And I am wondering why is it that despite having a somewhat similar existential crisis throughout my 14 long and miserable months at the College of Engineering, Guindy, I did not know about or consider the possibility of a writing life.

The only thing I knew for sure was that I needed to walk away, even if I didn't know what I was walking toward...

In retrospect, it has been a good, long walk, maybe even a demanding hike, but with plenty of inspiring scenery.

1 comment:

Di said...

Yann Martel hits home with the quote. Everyone is, at some point of time or another, in the crossroad of conflict and quite frankly seems to self quite dumb. Well put in words, thanks!