Saturday, June 11, 2022

Back To The Drawing Board (MY Eng #52)

This is part of a running series about English idioms - less about language, more about life itself. Previously, we covered 'missing the woods for the trees', 'the elephant in the room', 'practising what you preach', blowing hot and cold', 'no smoke without fire', 'one swallow does not make a summer', 'apples and oranges', 'cut to the chase', 'leave no stone unturned', 'that's the way the cookie crumbles', 'can't have your cake and eat it too', 'old is gold', 'putting the cart before the horse', 'mountain out of a molehill', 'pot calling the kettle black', 'bite the bullet', 'go the extra mile', 'silence is golden', 'the devil is in the details', 'sink or swim', 'once bitten twice shy', 'don't count your chickens before they hatch', 'don't put all your eggs into one basket', 'chicken and egg', 'walking on eggshells', 'flogging a dead horse', 'better late than never', 'storm in a teacup', 'between a rock and a hard place', 'darkest before dawn', 'empty vessels make the most noise', 'birds of a feather flock together', 'separate the wheat from the chaff', 'let sleeping dogs lies', 'open a can of worms', 'light at the end of the tunnel', 'trial and error', 'look before you leap', 'lightning in a bottle', 'on the same page', don't judge a book its cover', 'reinvent the wheel', 'shifting gears', 'throwing in the towel', 'jump on the bandwagon', 'passing the buck', 'breaking the ice', 'cracking the code', 'when it rains it pours', 'bigger fish to fry' and 'ball is in your court'.

Ever poured your entire heart and soul into a life mission at the expense of everything else?

Ever made sacrifices beyond the call of duty and suffer in silence?

Ever lost all connection with the people and world close to you to achieve an impossible task that you can only hope against hope that others will be inspired to join your cause, ligthen your load, and save you from falling into the oblivion?

Been there, done that, brought back souveniers from Hell. People say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. But people has less to say about the road away from hell. All the pain and suffering endured in the fires of the netherworld almost seems like a distant memory now. Am I able to adjust living back in the real world? Now, that's the real challenge...

* * *

Yes, feels good to be back. To be free from the seemingly never-ending nightmare. But the wave of relief is momentary. A new wave is about to horizon. Here and now, I'm back to the drawing board.

Then again, I've been here one too many times before. Hitting a dead end, backtracking, and starting afresh. To face new experiences, and new challenges.

Okay, I'm somewhat overdramatizing my condition. It's not like I'm heading towards unknown territory. I've been bracing myself for some time. It's a homecoming of sorts.

Still, much has changed since I last left. Even the toughest of steel is bound to rust. Even the most change-adverse industry can't escape the inexorable march of technology. There's much to relearn and unlearn.

* * *

Being back to the drawing board doesn't necessarily mean that one begins with a clean slate. It's not a complete reversal of choices made. It's just a small step backwards, to take a giant leap forwards.

After all, life doesn't move in a straight line. Life is filled with twists and turns. Sometimes, we need to walk in circles before we're able to espy the right path to take.

As a wise man (or woman) once said: "Not all who wander are lost". What is life if not an adventure that one feels excited to continue exploring every morning? When life gets boring, that's when you know you're stuck in hell. Heaven is where the fun begins...

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