1. State of being solitary 2. Lonely place
This is how the Oxford American Desk Dictionary defined it.
Solitary: 1. Living alone, not gregarious, 2 Secluded or unfrequented, 3. single or solo
Sounds pretty miserable by that definition.
But solitude is also the time of contemplation, meditation. The time when you are alone with your thoughts. Away from interruptions, time to focus, examine your inter thoughts.
I am quiet gregarious around people. Some say too much, but I do have quiet times. More than most.
I spend approximately 12 hours a week bicycling. That 624 hours a year. And it is all solitary time.
Riding a bike is like the old cowboy riding a horse. Just you and the steed. Except mine has two 100 pound of pressure inflated rubber tires, lights, odometer, mirror, and rack. But it the same solitude.
I don’t use ipods or cell phones to interrupt my thoughts of the morning or afternoon commutes. Instead, I observe the city waking up. I watch the little creatures as they search for food in the early sunlight. I listen the sprinklers awaking on the lawns. I feel the warmth of the sun or the cool morning air.
All this time moving to the rhythm of the peddles.
It is the time to enjoy the clouds, the dew drops, the sunlight shadows dancing across my path.
It is the time to think of conversations to far away friends. Think the thoughts that words can express.
It is the time to get the days song list in mind. What tunes will fill my head today?
So solitude is not as bad as the dictionary makes it out to be. Try it. You may learn a lot about your surroundings and a little about yourself.