Man holding a cardboard sign on my way home to the campsite. A red light stops traffic, and I look over at the man. I question if I have anything to toss out the window to him, and realize I’m currently shoving my face with peanuts. Should I toss the bottle out the window?
My head aches, my stomach grumbles and my mind is in a flurry. I realize how hungry I am, and my selfishness and middle class paranoia kicks in. What’s the difference between him and I anyway? “I’m traveling, too,” I think, as I drive away.
He sets his sign on the ground as I pass, done asking the universe for help for the time being. And I attempt to set down my ego, and beg the universe for a little bit of help.
I don’t know if it’s just a feeling that might come naturally after a week of being on the road, or something deeper. But I am tired. And I want some sort of stability. At the very least, some sort of stability that I can run away from.
The only stability I have right now is my writing. But that has faded in the past few days as I gave it too much importance.
I didn’t know what to write anymore. I didn’t want to write.
I realize I am traveling, broke, hungry and anything would help, also.
I realize I don’t need to produce quality art everyday.
I need to be art everyday. Being art is much more important to me than producing it.
This town is giving me a headache. It’s full of hard rock music and hard rock people who are too far out to come up and talk to you.
I feel really alone. And I’m pushing people away because of it. As you do.
I’m drinking beer at 3:30 in the afternoon because I really feel like I need it.
I don’t know what I’m doing out here in Oregon, man.
I guess I thought I was going to write life. Which I am doing. I’m writing my life, at least. But what happens when life loses its sparkle? You’re not going to want to read about that, are you? I want to share the sparkle with you, not the dirty street gutters and the fact that my anxious heart won’t slow down.–
I’m just worn out.
I don’t think I gave myself enough credit for the big transition I was embarking on a week and a half ago. I’m happy, I’m free, I get to travel.
I also just lost my previous place in the universe.
Society always act like traveling is this beautiful, special thing. And it’s something that I put on the altar of all that is good as well. But at the same time it haunts me.
There are so many people out in the world that I know that I connect with. Yet here I am, quiet and not really connecting with anyone out here in the big, beautiful Oregonian mystery.
And really that’s all I care about in the travel: the connection.
So when I’m not connecting, I question if I’m actually traveling.
In my mind, it’s a lot of money, a lot of stress, a lot of pretending like you’re interested in buildings, landmarks, trees, while you are in reality searching for something, someone, who will give you some sort of answer.
The traveler is the worldly woman, if only for the fact that she sometimes knows that she does not know how to be worldly. And she does not necessarily have any guts at all, but she in unable to allow herself to be comfortable, believing comfort a trap.
Thus, the traveler should be content with discomfort. The traveler should rejoice in the idea that she has hit a low point, where she realizes that everything she thinks in theory might deteriorate in practice. Or, perhaps more terrifying, the fact that she might have been right all along.
The traveler knows to stay away from other travelers, because two lost souls cannot help one another. The traveler gravitates toward those cemented in their own realities. The locals. Isn’t that what people want to read about? The traveler dancing with the locals, on sea and land?
The traveler wants to please you. The traveler is doing a lot of this for you, you people that are left at home. The traveler is selfish to be sure, but the traveler is only good at leaving because she wants to give more than herself to the world around her. She doesn’t feel enough staying in one place. She feels that she needs to push herself and her boundaries constantly to be anything.
This might have started out as a desire to impress others, but has since cemented in her personality as an undeniable vow to herself.
What’s more terrifying than being boring to herself?
The traveler must be uncomfortable. Because uncomfortable and insecure is always infinitely better than boring.
The traveler has seen many friends end their lives out of comfort. And the traveler comforts herself in her discomfort, knowing that she is fully, and completely, alive.
And it’s always changing.
The traveler is more fearful than most people in everyday life, that is why the traveler must face the fears of Everyman.
The traveler loves you, that is why the traveler must leave you.
The traveler loves no one, that is why the traveler must write.
The traveler finds another bottle of beer in her trunk. And decides she has remembered how to write.