Still – a tale of the stationary traveler
For the last 600, almost 700, odd days I have been wondering how I will deal with life once we stop moving.Â It would be fair to say that I have been generally avoiding thinking about it, because it was too scary. The way we have traveled has a drug-like effect on life. Stay with me for a minute. I have been high on endorphins for close to two years. Sources of this giddy little hormone have been bountiful, maybe because I have been physically pushed to the limit (climbing, carrying, heat, cold etc) or emotionally, with overcoming different fears, facing dangers, stressing, laughing and falling in love with people and places.
I have been high, people.
Traveling also fills your brain with so much new data, that it kind of blocks it..jams it, in a good way. My mind is a demanding little beast. It is curious, vicious and always hungry. If I am not thinking of the purpose of life, I have to keep it busy with high difficulty physical tasks,Â challenging conversations, teaching it new skills, feed it experiences, anything and everything.
My mind has been mostly satiated.
Soaking up the effects of these two simple facts has been pure bliss. I have been like Cleopatra tingling in her donkey milk.
And then we stopped unexpectedly.
I think I went through a mild case of depression. Not only did we stop, but we did it in a small village. Not only a small village, but one that seems to be hibernating for winter. And I don’t speak the language. And there are no fresh herbs (I love them!). And our house is not ‘cosy’, but new and bare. And…and…
But I think the worst part of stopping was having to stare my somewhat normal life back in the face. Suddenly all of its blemishes and wrinkles were coming back into focus, only this time looking a lot deeper and unsightly.Â I don’t think I can live that happily. When we left, I accepted that we will be coming back to ‘life’, but now I shudder at the thought. At the same time I am not sure how to avoid it. Panic was setting in…Â I read about 20 odd erotic novels in about as many days. It all started with friends of mine drilling about the Fifty Shades books in my head. So finally I read them and they turned out to beÂ an easy way to occupy my brain. So I stuffed it full, until I got bored. (Tell me if you want some recommendations, though)
To keep myself out of trouble and use this time for something actually useful, I made a few goals and set about achieving them.
1. Lose weight – finally facing the fact that by the time we arrived here I was the fattest I have ever been in my life, even pregnant, I started exercising almost every day and eating good. So far only 2-3kg lost, but muscles are definitely awakening.
2. Learn some Spanish – I am almost finished listening to Michel Thomas’s discs and have been quite happy with them. Easy, but I think I have a good foundation to build on.Â I can fake my way through shopping and in simple conversation I have pretty good understanding. Not bad, for an absolute beginner.
3. Write – unfortunately, because my thoughts are like quicksand at the moment, I am having serious trouble with that one. I have a lot to say, but not sure you want to read about it and some of it will most likely not be appropriate.
I am a really bad stationary traveler or my ‘normal life’ needs a makeover.
We-ell… you knew that you could not go on speed-traveling like that forever, did’nt you? Is there nothing from your “former” life that you miss, that you would like to have again? Nothing at all? That sounds really strange to me (who quite likes coming back to “normality” after travels, even if only to readjust the frame so I can break out again happily a few months later).
And, if it is such a scary thought for you to stop or to slow down – why the hell did you? And why in such a godforsaken village, as you describe it?
Anyway, what does the rest of the Blabbing clan think about your current style of living – everybody content as nomads with no goal, no “home”? Maybe that’s it for you: living as a (digital) Gypsy? Now your “goal” would be to identify a way to finance this way of life. As you have been thinking about that for 2 years now, there should be some ideas by now?!
(And, btw: Stop wasting your life with that awful pseudo-erotic 50-Shades-trash right now, or at least read it in Spanish ;-))
Sorry if I sound a bit parenting, these are just random thoughts. I miss your travel storys and your ecstatic food rantings – maybe you should just get up and moving again…
I knew it, but I did not know it ;)
This stop will pass, but now I am really stuck with that pesky idea of what is it we are ‘coming back’ to and whether I really want it. I miss my friends, but that is it. Is that enough?
And no slapping necessary, the light reads stage passed a long time ago ;)
50 shades was ok until it was annoying but it was engrossing nonetheless – good lessons for the writer I think – if absolute trash can make me read three books (ok skipping all the naughty scenes after a bit) then what could writing about actually interesting things do? Anyway, seems likely to be old fashioned 1930s ennui rather than depression maybe? More romantic anyway. The solution to all? Come to Memphis and play with me!! (:
50 shades was annoying but engrossing – totally good reading for a writer – it hooks you in and was a huge best seller. The naughty parts got boring fast so it wasn’t about them so much but about the tension of the relationship – in this silly book she made us care about the protagonist. Part of why your posts are engrossing is b/c we care about the family but mostly we care about the protagonist (that’s you chickie) so I hope you are having a romanicc 1930s spell of ennui rather than real malaise. You certainly have to figure out your, stuff, but it doesn’t mean reverting back to BEFORE but taking what you’ve done and creating NEXT. Basically, just come to Memphis and let’s open a bottle of wine and figure it out!
Ha! Can’t tell what is posting! Sorry for the multiple posts
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I guess it was bound to happen, wasn’t it? The “coming down” from the incredible travelling high you’ve been on. What about the rest of the crew? How are they feeling? And did the Mr. get any benefits from the erotic novels you’ve been reading (oh no, hang on – that might be the inappropriate stuff you are contemplating writing???!!! Travel blog turned “Erotic mamma stuck in Spain” blog… hmmmmm)
Memphis and wine..consider it done, Liz. And it is definitely mostly ennui with reality that is depressing me ;) . I think I should write a book, then, right?
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Marianna, so good to hear from you. The rest of the crew are handling it much better. The kids as usual have taken it into their stride.
In fact, I think the blog you are suggesting will be quite successful, if only I was interested in writing it. Say hi to the family!