Monday, 21 December 2015

Lonely planet, Globetrotter without baggage

This isn't your typical travel story about the places we should see on this lonely planet, doing it with fewer belongings. Or a travel guide for the places one must see or one hasn't lived. Its about people who already travel and have this bug of always needing to move onto the next big experience. Caught in the rapture of getting things done and the thrill of the chasing the next jet stream to a place that will somehow fulfill the inside need that drives us all. Flight after flight, traveling the world. I include myself into this mix. Little do we know that somehow we are scattering ourselves across this lonely planet, with little bits of history forgotten in cities around the globe.

With this era of globetrotting and the perception that we as individuals are defined by our history, how do we carry this with us without it becoming too heavy. Should we carry it at all and is this focus on big adventure and excitement taking us away from developing more internal processes that can lead to greater personal fulfillment? These are questions you can only answer yourself, here are a few of mine to prompt thought.

I don't have the feeling to hang onto my history, but integrating the experiences into who i am in the present and giving them an acknowledged existence somehow feels apt. Sometimes these big experiences are left forever, sometimes you find it back again with a little element of surprise as you go around a corner of a city you feel you barely know. Falling into a place where you have fallen in love, or got lost, or some small or big story that reminds you of times past. A distant memory that stalks you on your travels until you are reunited by physically being in the same place again. How well do we know any place? But one that holds strong memories is a place that is on our internal map forever.

Traveling lightly has been a natural process when constantly on the move. Including the way I dealt with shifting relationships with friends, family and loves. I sometimes have the feeling i should have worked more on these relationships instead of the minimalist approach i took to everything. Always living fully and deeply, moving on, letting go, chasing the dream and never standing still. Addicted to crossing off big experiences in my internal list, until the day I faced my inner junky. Exchanging big adventures and dangerous situations for taking the time to live fully each moment. See the value in the small things like walking through a sun soaked garden, smelling jasmine and orange blossom mixing together after it had just rained. It probably sounds funny but i only discovered that i have a really good sense of smell when i was 23 years old. With this new found peace that moved with me, I saw this beautiful city of Buenos Aires with fresh eyes and wonder.

So now I bump into baggage blindly, walking around a forgotten corner into a street where i had a difficult moment, or avoiding unconsciously a house where I discovered that someone could truly love me. A particular crossing where 2 guys where so busy chatting me up from the safety of their car, that they comically crashed into a pile of garbage left to one side of the pedestrian crossing. i laughed about that for days. A milonga where I was with a lover for the last time before we wordlessly left each other and having already expressed so much and not knowing how to continue in our separate worlds.  The list goes on. Its got to the point where I would like to either spend a lot of time here to change it creating new stories or make this my last journey here to this beautiful city of Buenos Aires. This only highlights that its physically uncomfortable for me to experience history that is built into a place. I am not used to this and think to find peace with history itself rather than try for one of the above two options.

So for now I am sitting in my history learning not to take it too seriously while also having a moment in time to question my present and what is happening in my life right now. When do we choose that difficult is too much and move on? a big question for me now as i am always worried about the mistake to move on too quickly, often causing myself pain and more hurt in the process. A bit cryptic but i will leave it this way for now. Written as if pen to paper.

isolde kanikani blog chiclocaBefore the big boom in air travel, we all lived more in one place. Where each person was surrounded by their own history. Nowadays we globe trotters have gotten so used to experiencing so much but leaving it behind in some forgotten place. The incidental confrontations are uncomfortable because we are less used to them now. Growing as people from the experience but not having the confrontation and responsibility of it like we used to have in times when people moved around a lot less, and friends were like mirrors. Searching for fulfillment in big experiences while its often the personal everyday ones that hold the greatest meaning for us when we look back. Like the sailor who has a lover in every port, until he discovers the love of his life and all others are forgotten. I suspect that when i look back as an old woman on my life, I won't be interested in the in ports or the list that stands full with my adventures. But instead remembering and cherishing the people who touched my life profoundly
however brief and the little instances that have added rich flavours.

Never forgetting the first time I smelled jasmine and orange blossom mixing forever in a tiny sun soaked garden, installed forever on the internal map of my tiny globe.