When I was 18 I took off on a greyhound bus to Northern California to take part in Redwood Summer. I went alone with a small tent, a backpack and $50 in my pocket. That summer I lived in the forest, in my tent sometimes, but more frequently I slept under the stars curled up with another activist cuddling to stay warm and because it just feels good. I swam naked, learned to become a leader, and went to jail twice for the trees. I had amazing lovers and was completely free. Leaving my life for a summer like that at age 18 was much easier than I can imagine it would be at age 42, but oh do I feel nostalgic for those summer days.
I’m craving an adventure. It is an insatiable hunger, an unscratchable itch under my skin. I don’t just mean another week long scuba trip, but a real adventure. I’ve been daydreaming about quitting my job, cashing in my 401K and just traveling solo for several months or longer. I’ve spent hours checking out this great travel blog and daydreaming of the places I want to see.
It is well known that I am an adventurous person, but I think this itch to travel is about more than just exploring the world. I think I sometimes want a complete break from my life and responsibilities. I want to be completely independent and autonomous, rootless, and beholden to no one. I want to spend time with new people who do not know me, who do not know my past, or have expectations of how I should behave or feel. I want to just be free.
So what do I do with all of this pent up energy? This restless need to go and see and do and be on my own? It seems to grip me every few years with a fervor that usually leads me to make bad choices. I am impulsive by nature but when this particular fever hits, my impulsivity can turn into recklessness.
In the past this feeling has come over me when I’m dissatisfied and feeling trapped in my life. This time? Maybe it is partly due to the fact that I am head over heels in love with someone who is married to someone else. I only get to see my lover every couple of weeks and I can’t ever seem to get my fill of him in or out of bed. I am not used to not having what I want when I want it. And let me tell you that he fills me with more want than I’ve ever experienced before. A one sentence text is sometimes all it takes for the blood to leave my head and rushes to other parts of my body, my breath becomes shallow, and my pulse quickens. The more time we spend together the better it gets and the more I crave him.
Or maybe I’m freaking out because for the first time in over a decade I feel like I am completely in love and my inclination is to just run from that because, that’s some scary shit. Being completely vulnerable and authentic is breathtakingly thrilling but also terrifying at times. I know that my current theme in life is being fearless, but really I am human.
Or maybe I am just an adventurer who has been chained to a cubicle in corporate America for too fucking long. I crave variety and I have none of that in my career, which is where I spend the majority of my waking hours it seems. I miss being a student, learning new things every day, expanding my mind and connecting with other people who are curious and passionate, changing classes every three months to move on to the next interesting thing. This corporate crap sucks my soul sometimes. I hate small talk in the lunchroom with co-workers who seem to only want to talk about television, which I rarely watch, or how unhappy they are in their relationships yet make no move to change anything. I’m surrounded by people who live only for the weekends. Fuck that shit. Life is too short to only feel happy two days a week. I want it every single day.
There’s no tidy ending to this blog post. There is no aha moment where I realize that all I need is right here. There is just this ache, this itch.
I don’t even know what the point of this post is except to just vomit my thoughts and feelings on to a screen in the hope that I will come back to it later and find the answer. I’m not even going to edit this. Fuck it…hello world, this is me in all my messy glory.
I think I will go buy a lottery ticket.