“Three o’clock is always too late or too early for anything you want to do.”
– Jean-Paul Sartre, Nausea
Somehow, searching for something else, I stumbled upon it; an image of a young girl who’d spent a long day eating watermelon on a pebbled beach of the Adriatic and swum off cliffs into the dark night with strangers and a heart full of ideals. I knew it had to be my younger self as the photograph was stuck inside the cover of a Didion novel that ruled my world back then, kept nearby due to hopeless nostalgia, but beyond this and some questionable swimwear, I no longer recognised the person I saw. That wide-eyed innocence staring at me had evaporated, as had the optimistic vitality that comes with thinking you know it all, now replaced by what I like to think is a quieter kind of self-esteem. It was in this very moment though, looking back over the years that had passed – some of them fairly abruptly and without my consent – that I realised how I was changed. Forever.
Time. We approached this most precious notion of all for our 15th anniversary issue and although in these pages we turned to our ‘classics’ who usually help us with the answers – Kim Gordon, Patti (Smith) – there were no clear revelations because above all our relationship to it is deeply personal.
For most of us it is sinuous: some days feeling panicked by the desperate inability to harness it, living as though there is a ticking bomb in our pockets, while other times filled with deep gratitude for the moment, slaying the clock and feeling as if we are truly living in the now.
Is time really an illusion or can we actually take control of it again when we re-evaluate what is truly important to us?
Model icon and climate change activist Vivien Solari, who was chosen for this cover because, above all else, she has taken a stand to live with compassion over self-interest, leads us to believe we can.
As with any milestone, this one carries with it a bigger narrative; of hindsight, knowledge and learning of how it relates to our sense of belonging and knowing who we are. My younger self would have read my horoscope in the late pages of this issue and felt fearful at the transformation promised, but today I’m invested in the evolution, glad I’m not the person I was then, or even a year ago.
As we close out another year, and indeed another decade, the RUSSH team and I just want to wish you peace in this moment. Live now, for as we’ve come to understand, the now never ends.