“I just want it all to go away.”
This was a comment I made to my cousin Rach recently, regarding the last 2.5 years of my life.
“I wish there would be key written delete on it for last 30 months.”
This was a comment a fellow long distance cyclist who recently arrived home made to me in an email yesterday.
This made me think two thoughts…
1. At least I’m not the only one who thinks this way.
2. Why do we (some long distance travellers) think this way? Why is there such a strong desire to just ignore and distance ourselves from our experiences?
I think much of this desire to try to block out our experiences is just because we become tired of talking about it. When I tell someone the basic details of what I was up to for the last few years, the usual reaction is “Wow, that is amazing! You are amazing!”.
My inner reaction to the response of those I tell about the journey, is hard to describe. I get an inexplicable uncomfortable feeling.
Tainted with discomfort
Knowing the pain
Knowing the weakness
Inner joy masked incurably with pain
Anyone could do this
Given the time and inclination
I’m not amazing. I am me. I did not travel around the world. I moved one day. And then moved some more the next. Just like you.
Just like you.
It is hard being back in ‘normal’ society. Everyday conversations are menial and uninspiring. Jokes are lost on me. I feel at a loss as to what to say. I don’t know how to make conversation. I miss the excitement of operating in a foriegn language. I feel trapped in this boring language of the West. I miss an environment where everyday conversations are made exciting by the joy of the exchange of a common humanity that bridges culture.
Every fibre of my being is resisting this period of change. Why is change so hard?
Single to two
Isolated to community
One to many
Movement to stillness
Mulit-vistas to mono-colour wallpaper
Multi-ideas to a common idea
Multi-thoughts to a common thought
Multi-culture to a common culture
My advice: Don’t travel.
Life is hard after travel.
Good, I think, but hard.
It is hard when those who you hope will understand cannot understand.
When will I feel comfortable again? I don’t know.
Do I want to feel comfortable? I don’t know.
Until then, in the words of my fellow cycle traveller:
“I am this stranger ‘from the moon’….with too complex view.“