MC: “Without free will we are not ‘good,’ we are just in check.”

I argued with the AP, trying to get her to pack up and check-out.  She resisted, begging, pleading, and foot-dragging to persuade me to stay there.  I don’t think she was really into me.  I think she was just into staying another night at the resort, at my expense.

I conceded to going on a hike with her before returning home.  That turned into another small nightmare.  She said she had not packed proper shoes.  We drove around looking for shoes as well as gas.  We were running out of gas too.  I got a bit lost.  She said my driving was too fast on the unpaved, bumpy roads.  She became agitated, and then panicked, about the bumpy roads, begging me to drive slower.  Since I was already driving ridiculously slow and I was also increasingly hurried to get away from that “evil life” to go take refuge in my “normal life,” I did not slow down.  She eventually had a tantrum and exclaimed that she would get out of the car and take a taxi back to the hotel.  She did so, not before stopping to borrow taxi money from me.

At this point I pulled over and called TL. I made up some stupid, impromptu lie to explain why I was calling so late and why I was using a cell phone instead of Skype.  Then I told myself I would go get my stuff at the hotel and go home.

When I pulled up to the hotel, there was the AP, suddenly calm and happy, suddenly having found adequate shoes, and suddenly saying she had convinced the hotel staff to give us late check-out.  I conceded to take a brief hike with her before going home.  To this day, I don’t really know why I didn’t just insist on going home.  We hiked.  We argued, when I got sick of her inane blabbering and responded to her simplistic political opinions with calm but shocking disagreement. We ate lunch.  She insisted we stay longer. I think I was just completely emotionally, intellectually, and morally exhausted from my double-life.  I just sort of became passive, letting the AP and fate make decisions for me.

When I think about this, I suspect letting fate make decisions for me was sort of a default mode for me.  My mother always insisted on making all decisions.  Well into junior high school or beyond, she decided what I would wear, eat, and do each day.  I did not get much experience making decisions.  A wise man once told me that if you don’t have a lot of experience making decisions, every decision seems onerous, demanding, and monumental.

It’s easy to behave morally if there are no temptations and no free will.  You don’t have to choose abstinence or self-control in regard to sex, alcohol, tobacco, narcotics, or pranks, if you have no access to those things or the means to act on them.  Without free will, we are not “good,” we are just in check.  When my parents were not in arm’s reach, I didn’t think to choose good behavior.  I reveled in the chance to do the forbidden. Later in life, I gradually developed my own reasons I did not want to be known for pranks or drunkenness or did not want to be slowed down by tobacco or other substances.  But, I learned that too late in life, and too gradually.

With this habit of not making decisions, I basically let teachers, bosses, girlfriends, and eventually my wife make a lot of decisions for me.  When I did make a few decisions, about work or fitness, for example, I went to another extreme, becoming inflexible and unable to make a new decision and adjust or change course.

So I sat there, having lunch with that AP, not putting forth the mental effort to take the decision into my own hands sooner rather than later.  We ran into someone I knew casually.  We pretended not to be together.  We went to the hot tub.  Finally, we check-out and left.

It was very late.  I worried about running out of gas.  I worried about getting lost.  She complained about my driving speed.  My driving speed was reasonable.  At one point in the journey, somewhat out of the blue, she said something like, “Don’t tell anyone about us.  You won’t tell anyone, right?”  My reaction was something to the effect of, “Are you kidding me? Of  course it’s nothing I would want to tell anyone.”  It was odd.  I don’t know why she said that, in that way, at that time, and so suddenly insistently.

It got later and darker.  She complained louder and more desperately.  I don’t recall what I said, but it was several variations on the theme of, “I’m done listening to you.”  Finally, I dropped her at her place and went home, trying to go back to my “normal life.”

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