I remember this verse by Lao Tzu more than ever right now, Mi.

Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu – chapter 11

Thirty spokes share the wheel’s hub;
It is the center hole that makes it useful.
Shape clay into a vessel;
It is the space within that makes it useful.
Cut doors and windows for a room;
It is the holes which make it useful.
Therefore profit comes from what is there;
Usefulness from what is not there.

Except, my experience right now is not so profound. You know the corner flat has been vacant for years now. Finally, last week a family moved in. And we are now assailed with cooking smells from their kitchen whose window opens into the same space as ours. Which means food smells in the attached bath and when that door is open, into the bedroom as well. Errgh. Most boring is when our tummies are full and we have no choice but to be enveloped in that smell. I suppose I could be grateful that it is not an onslaught of coconut oil literally burning, like that family that lived in the flat years ago. Such sweet people they were, however.

So after zero smells except our own cooking aromas for years, we are now having to share our air – how unfair, no?

We appreciate the absence of other peoples’ aromas now, more than ever because that space has been displaced with new entrants. Pretty much like grumbling over the humming we hear every morning and then missing it desperately when we don’t hear it on a given day.

Are we humans crazy or what? Damned if we do…and … eh.