Featuresalex farnham's soapbox

alex farnham’s soapbox

To celebrate the fact that this month’s issue is embracing the theme of ‘SLOW’, I took it upon myself to take my time sending in my article (shout-out to Russ, who makes my life easier by never telling me off for sending work in late!) Seriously, ‘SLOW’ as a theme? This is right up my street.

I love everything about it. The word’s even onomatopoeic… sort of. Have a go; really draw out the word with a deep voice: sssslllloooowwwwwww. Think about it, your life will be twice as long if you do everything half as fast. I mean, sure, you’ll get half as much done, but doing things is overrated anyway. Snails seem to enjoy themselves don’t they? I’m not suggesting we all lie down and spend hours sliding along on our fronts to have a little nibble on a leaf, but I think slowing down is underrated as an art-form.

For me, slowing down encompasses relaxing, taking a deep breath, and taking time to put things into perspective. More recently than anything else, I slowed down by taking a holiday back to our lovely island to spend some time with my family, drinking and eating and just generally taking it easy. It wasn’t until the afore-mentioned Russ brought it to my attention that I realised it wasn’t just a holiday; it was a pensioner’s holiday. I’m only 25 and it was an OAP’s fantasy. I was pretty much a War Tunnels tour and a North Coast Walk away from being checked in to a care home. We went to Durrell, we watched The Battle of Flowers – it really was quite a slow-paced holiday. I realised then, that I had no problem with this whatsoever. Why do the elderly get to have all the fun? Who says a young, healthy man such as myself can’t enjoy a more leisurely and chilled out way of life.

I say healthy… I’m currently on antibiotics for toothache and am awaiting a chiropractic appointment for my back pains that I contracted from walking up a hill. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: ‘ladies, form an orderly queue’…

Aside from my geriatric groaning, I thought it would be a good idea to write this article after my trip to Jersey, because it genuinely is a lot more agreeably paced that an England lifestyle. I don’t know if everyone’s just happy all the time or what (actually, judging by a lot of Jersey’s Range Rover drivers, I can tell you now that’s not true) but the slightly more European way of life twinned with an array of 20mph zones makes for a much nicer atmosphere in terms of relaxation and chilling – or ‘chillaxation’ if you want to be cool about it, which I do by the way.

It was genuinely such a perfect trip back, and it grew my love of Jersey even more because of how much it reminded me that it’s got the way of life sussed. I’m by no means saying you’re all lazy wasters who lie on the beach drinking Prosecco, well… you do, but not before you’ve done your work and whatnot! Basically what I’m trying to say is that I think the whole ‘work hard play hard’ thing has been adapted for the Jersey way of life, and is more along the lines of ‘work hard, slow down, and play however the hell you like’. And, like the theme of this month’s magazine, that’s right up my street.

Life can get quite ‘full on’ for everyone, and a pet peeve of mine is when people assume that their life is any worse than anyone else’s. People who run around, trying to fulfil all their obligations in a loud and self-important way… you know the kind of people I mean, the ones who say we things like ‘oh we must get something in the diary!’ or ‘we HAVE to catch up soon, definitely!’. Now I know we’ve all done this at some point in our lives, but all these false promises and feigned business are clear signs that people need to slow down.

Don’t assume you’re life is any more hectic or important than anyone else’s you stupid idiot, take a deep breath and relax – go for a beer or something, embrace an unhurried lifestyle and care a bit less about things that don’t matter, at the very least it’ll make you live longer. I’m not sure that’s medically accurate but I’ll ask the chiropractor when I manage to get an appointment. They said they’ll get ‘back’ to me and I laughed manically because I thought it was a pun… it turns out it wasn’t and they probably just think I’m weird now. Oh well, I’m embracing the slowness and not caring about the things that don’t matter, partly because of the back pain but mainly due to the crucial factor and the point of this typically preachy article: chillaxation.

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