smoke over a field at dawn. Would have once filled me with intensely pleasurable emotion, that this is the sort of experience one should be having, rich, sharp, textured, every sense activated, primal, suggestive – plus regret that one hasn’t always had such experiences daily, plus frustration that this is not a daily experience now. Unhappiness that one’s life is not as one would want it, i.e. not optimal, not as full of peak experiences as it could be.
Now, it’s just smoke over a field at dawn. Senses highly stimulated, in part by unfamiliarities, in part by extremes of lighting, temperature, awareness of contingency of the moment. I can get the same thing from a mid-afternoon lamppost if I want.