Perfect Day?

“The most appealing daily schedule I know is that of a turn-of-the-century Danish aristocrat. He got up at four and set out on foot to hunt black grouse, woodcock, and snipe. At eleven he met his friends, who had also been out hunting alone all morning. They converged ‘at one of these babbling brooks,’ he wrote. He outlined the rest of his schedule. ‘Take a quick dip, relax with a schnapps and a sandwich, stretch out, have a smoke, take a nap or just rest, and then just sit around and chat until three. Then I hunt some more until sundown, bathe again, put on white tie and tails just to keep up appearances, eat a huge dinner, smoke a cigar and sleep like a log until the sun comes up again to redden the eastern sky. This is living…. Could it be more perfect?’” — Annie Dillard
(Thanks to Tim G. The unnamed aristo was Karen Blixen’s father))

2 thoughts on “Perfect Day?”

  1. They made them tough then, the old Danes — I know because I now live part-time in Jutland and they are just about 'containing' the shit from cows and pigs (mostly pigs) that go in Danish waterways. Just about, the Aarhus river does smell of ammonia from time to time (and when I say smell, I mean smell from 300 feet away). One hundred and ten years ago dipping in Danish rivers it was a good way to select for E. coli resistance…

  2. I prefer my eight hours of sleep……

    Otherwise, many of my best days have followed similar schedules. When battling the Black Dog, the psychologist that I was seeing recommended that I do more of it. It is still my default solution to a dark day, to take the shotgun and a few dogs (terriers and stags) and go walk the hills.

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