No time

This turtle had plenty of time to pose for me near the Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, July 2003

This turtle had time to pose for me near the Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, July 2003

“I have no time to be in a hurry.”Henry David Thoreau

When I was a child, I often heard talk of “the lazy days of summer.”  I haven’t heard that phrase in a very long time.  Indeed, summer seems more hectic than any other season, with vacations, activities and daily obligations packed so tightly that the time slips away before we accomplish half of what we had planned.

It’s no use getting into a rush, though.  At least it’s not for me; I make more mistakes and get even farther behind when I try to do more than I’m capable of doing within a certain period of time.  And the stress of running behind, trying to make up lost time, is almost unbearable.  In my case, haste really does make waste.

My challenge is having a poor grasp of time and how long things will take.  Thus I pack way more ambition into my plans than would be realistic for a time slot twice as long as the one I’m dealing with.  The only way around this I have found is to leave huge cushions of time whenever I’m planning anything.  It feels like sloppy planning until the time arrives, during which I normally STILL run out of time, even with a generous allowance built in.  I keep hoping I’ll get better at planning, because just as Thoreau says, I really have no time for hurry.

Whatever you have planned today, or this week, or the remainder of the summer, don’t be afraid to SLOW DOWN if things start spinning past you too quickly!


  1. That is a fantastic photo, and a lovely sentiment to go with it!

    • Thank you, I’m so happy you like it! I’m always so excited to see animals of any kind, and this one was willing to be still and pose!

  2. Perhaps your childhood memory is sparked by Nat King Cole’s catchy tune: “Roll out those lazy, crazy, hazy days of summer . . .”? But, I prefer “Alabama’s” song that came along about thirty years later: “I’m in a hurry to get things done, and I rush and rush until life’s no fun; all I really gotta do is live and die, but I’m in a hurry and don’t know why. . .”

    • Hey, I’ve never heard that song (or if I have, I’ve forgotten it) – maybe I can find it on YouTube. Isn’t it great to be able to find so many things – even the esoteric and obscure (such as Bestoink Dooley) by looking online? Thanks for sending me these words. I do have fond memories of Nat King Cole’s song that you quoted above, but when I hear it in my head, it’s the Ray Conniff or Percy Faith chorus singing it.

  3. “If I could save time in a bottle…” I feel like time slips by me so fast these days I hardly know the season. I will be relaxing at the beach next week so hopefully I can catch up on some things. If I have time. 🙂

    • Hee-hee, there you go again proving my point about how summer lulls us into thinking we can catch up! I hope you at least catch up on REST and SUNSHINE! Sounds great to me.

  4. merry

    Great picture, bold turtle! He’s thinking, “who is pretty one with the camera?”…
    Glad to hear I’m not the only one time slips by. Once I hit the seventies, I began slowing down…not choice, when one runs out of engery. ~/ lol

    • Merry, you are so kind! I think that turtle looks like the Don Rickles of the reptile world. He seems to be thinking, “What IS it already with you humans and your goofy cameras?” What they lack in speed, they make up in attitude! I hope I can wait until the seventies to slow down. Jeff and I were already to the point where we couldn’t stay awake through a movie that started too late, and that was BEFORE he got sick! I’ve always lagged behind him, though, so now that he’s been forced to slow down a bit, we are more in sync in some ways. Thanks for being here!

  5. Sheila

    Julia, this is a true event from our office today. A patient checks in and unable to read the Rx, I asked for the name. The husband replies that the last name is “Camera”. I wanted to ask,”Is her first name Julia?” Hope you don’t mind going to the office with me! Haha. I do think of you so often….Sheila

    • Sheila, that’s funny! I never knew of anyone with that name, although I did have one friend whose last name was Kammerer, and another whose last name was Kodatt, and…you guessed it…the always reminded me of “camera” and “Kodak.” Actually it’s great going to the office with you. I need to get out more. 🙂

      • Sheila

        Julia,I find that I run out of steam (is that dated?) before I run out of time! I’m not quite the “wonder woman” I used to be! I can plan far more for a day than is humanly possible. Loved reading the different lyrics, by the way. Hope Jeff has a good night.

  6. Aunt Gia, Holly LOVES the Palace of Fine Arts and it was one of the first places she took me when I visited her in Fairfield for the first time way back when. I love the turtle in your picture, too. He looks like a larger version of our yellow-bellied slider, John Turtle Sinclair (so named for the lake where we caught him – maybe you know it). 😉 We love John Turtle and think he has a great personality – like your guy in the photo. I have read turtle are very stupid, but I don’t think I believe it. Love ya’ll.

    • Loolamay, I think the “turtles are stupid” trick was first tried by a very smart tortoise many years ago, and it was such a useful con for maintaining a slow-paced lifestyle that it quickly spread throughout the turtle world. It wasn’t just the hare (in the famous story) who bought into the “slow equals stupid” hoax. I’m so glad you got to go to the Palace of Fine Arts; I used to take almost everybody there too. That entire area is my favorite part of SFO. Which is saying quite a lot, actually. Thanks for being here!

  7. I’m fortunate to have the luxury of time most weeks and I still don’t get as much done as I plan. I’m not as good a multi tasker as I think I guess. Too many balls in the air.

    • Boomdee, I’ve been reading a lot lately about how there is really no such thing as multi-tasking and I believe it! But I love having lots of things going on. That way I can choose what I’m in the mood for 🙂 and still feel as if I am “getting something done.” I think those of us who are enthusiastic are almost always planning more than we are able to do, but it makes for a very full and fun life. I cannot imagine how anyone in today’s world could possibly be bored for very long.


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