There’s something wonderful about getting up early in the morning; really early, either before dawn or just as dawn is breaking. This morning I woke at 04:30. The windows were on the latch and outside the birds were waking and singing and making a glorious racket. It was raining, the clouds obscured the sun’s appearance but it didn’t matter. As it grew lighter, as the details emerged from the night’s fuzzy colours I saw a version of the world which is largely unknown to me, occurring as it does when I am usually sleeping. It made me think about why it is that I never stay up all night talking, or watching the earth turns its nightly rotations so that I see stars I never usually see, so that I can feel the motion of the earth in space? I wonder why it is that I don’t rise at dawn regularly and simply begin the day with the flush of sunrise, the spill of light over the fields and the houses, tainting the clouds, taking it slowly and simply watching. I can make the usual excuses: I work, I have responsibilities, I need to be focused, I am expected to turn up on time, regularly, and in a fit state, but what if I didn’t now and then, would that be worse than missing all of this? The fact is I am lazy, I am compliant and I am thoughtless. I have not done these things because I never think to, because it is easier to fit into the regularity of routine and pretend it doesn’t suit me. Experiencing life is harder than simply living it. Living requires nothing more than existing, it requires no effort. Living is what happens to us whether we want it to or not. Experiencing life takes effort. It takes an effort to pay attention, to observe, to let the world work its daily magic. But it is worth it, isn’t it?