Sunday, September 11, 2005

The Travel "Me" Is The Real "Me"

Ann wrote this and it really struck me. Yes! It was perfect.

A and I were once talking about my travels in New Caledonia, and I said that I would spend the days barefoot, on the beach, not a care in the world, happy, not neurotic, and that was the real me, not the 'at home' me who was neurotic and hyper sensitive and the queen of contraditions. And he laughed and said his ex had once told him the same thing, "this free spirit bullshit", and I felt really disappointed that he was so dismissive, bunching me in with her, on something I was trying to bring clarity to. But I couldn't back myself up anymore, it all started to sound stupid.

But Ann's "the travel 'me' is the real 'me'" so succinctly confirmed that it was legitimate. The travel 'me' is fearless, provocative, content. The travel 'me' flirts with strangers and enjoys the pick-up lines and goes into small machismo men-only bars at 10.30am to drink. The travel 'me' is acutely aware of her instinct. The travel 'me' is confident and honest. The travel 'me' is spontaneous. The travel 'me' is fascinated by love and wants to explore it from every angle.

At home, it becomes comfortable and safe. I become safe. And it's fine, life is good and I am happy, but it's numbing. Anxietes come out. The attitude passes from open to everything to cynical, sensitive and unchallenging.

So why is the real me that travel me and not the at home me. Because when you remove the shell of the everyday and of routine and open yourself to the unknown, you have what's pure and honest. And real.

You can't say, "well just pretend you're on holiday then!". Dah. I don't think it's that simple. You have the cocoon of familiarity at home and it's hard to shake it off.

But as you get older, you become more honest with yourself - it's something I'm tangibly striving for - so perhaps it is possible with work. Wouldn't it be wonderful to be completely real.


Blogger TessaJ said...

Well, you KNOW that this speaks to me. The travel me isn't burdened by any obligations -- whether work or family or simply the familiarity of real life. The travel me isn't concerned about making a fool out of herself as she can always move onward, physically and mentally, from a foolish situation.

It's not about "free spirit bullshit," but it is about being free.

I don't know to what extent we can be this free in the real world, but I think we can learn to take chances. For me, that's what separates travel me from real-world me. That's what I'm trying to learn as I mature.

5:33 AM  
Blogger Julia said...

That's very true: another feature of being the real 'me' is about taking chances.

The world needs your book baby.

8:52 AM  

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