I have been away for a while, in more ways than one. While lounging in 100 degree heat, I picked up a book and read it cover to cover. This was a mystery from a Swedish writer - Haken Nesser. I am not sure that many would agree with me, but there is immense pleasure in just reading a book. It has no real purpose in the scheme of what we do to make it through the day and pay the bills. Reading is just very relaxing.
Once caught up in the grips of a good read, I make for very poor company. In this case I read the book in just over a day. I did not do much else. At one point in the mystery, a character, the Inspector actually, mentions solving a mystery by playing patience, a card game. His point was that the brain works in convoluted disjointed patterns, but patterns none the less. As you let go of your pressing faculties, the brain tinkers with the material as an unattended child tinkers with whatever his hands can grab. It is then through the process of playing a card game, that the dots are connected and a clear picture arises.
It is apparent to me that as I read, I also drop the worry. Solutions to other problems come more easily. There is the difficulty of convincing your boss that playing a card game is part of your work duties, but it is. As for my corporate boss, I think he understands that I work in mysterious ways, but things get done.
One thing about the Swedish writer Nesser - his writing is dark. Police work is often the investigation of twisted and deranged people. To do work like that it is necessary to be close to a criminal as well. It is a fine line.
What did the great oracle, Mick Jagger, say? "Like every cop is a criminal, and every sinner a saint. Ask me who killed the Kennedys, after all it was you and me." However close we come to the edge, or falling in; there are always extenuating circumstances. Excuses can be found. Aristotle made the distinction between a voluntary act and an involuntary act. The courts have been working with that one ever since.
This was a voluntary act - to read a book. Besides the pleasure I also learned a few things about myself. Time off is necessary, but you are not really ever completely off. This is just time well spent. Hopefully this is possible for others as well.