Yes, the look of the river and the feel of the cold is important as I advance mechanically through my commute each day. The present is where we feel pleasure and pain, where we endure monotony, where we encounter ugliness so overwhelming that our minds fly off as soon as they can.
The clock ticks on the desk at work, urging us snap out of our reveries. We are not to “waste time” but to “spend it” well. If it’s in the present that our future is made, every moment, every action is decisive. (Time, according to William James, being “that short duration of which we are immediately and incessantly sensible.”)
The most delightful moments in life are those stolen from time-consciousness, profligately squandered, absorbed in sleep, pleasure, work or any intellectual or imaginative activity. Reading, doodling, listening to music, even eavesdropping, beholding beauty. Such are the presents that conquer time.