Pre-trav

Jan 28, 2011

“On a long enough timeline the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.” –Zero Hedge

Travelling is good.  In a small way, I feel that right before you leave for a big, long trip, it gives you the sense of what it’s like perhaps when you are old, or when you know you are going to die and your days are numbered. Before I left for Asia 6 years ago, it felt like I did more living in the 2 weeks before I left than I did in months leading up to it. Now, I find myself once again leaving for the Asia-Pacific region, and again, the same thing is happening this time around.

It makes me wonder what life would be like if we lived this way everyday. With a real sense of the fleetness of our existence. I mean, people pay lip service to the brevity of life all the time. But alas, we invariably fall prey to the day to day, to ruts, to excesses of time wasters, and of roundabout or slower than needed approaches to life’s unfoldings. I think this is especially pertinent when it comes to personal relationships. How many times do we know we want to express something to someone we care about, but either don’t, or perhaps leave it unacknowledged. Like that girl that we really like and tell ourselves that we’ll get to know her and eventually ask her out. Why not just walk right up to her out of the blue and ask her out? Would save you a lot of time, that’s for sure. Especially if in the end it ends up being wasted time for all intents and purposes. And those friends we are always meaning to hang out with, that we have so much fun with and care about, but perhaps we decline their invitations to outings due to school, work in the a.m., etc. Or some plan, adventure, thing you really want to do or see, that has been in the back of your head, you’ve been meaning to get around to doing for a while now, but just haven’t had the chance to. These things, this life we desire and that our subconscious thinks of and craves, but we rarely create in RL with the immediacy it deserves until faced with a deadline. Then all of a sudden your perspective will change. Hesitation and planning becomes action and immediacy.

I feel that an impending change of scenery such as that provided by a long, distant and protracted voyage, gives one a taste of what it may be like to be faced with an imminent terminal deadline. The details are forgotten and the essentials are sought and enriched. I just wish I could live my live like this at every turn. Indeed, I feel as though some do. We see and come across them all the time. And sadly, I would have to say that I’ve come across the opposite as well. People who don’t value straight up honesty, bluntness and straightforwardness, who might be apt to avoid an honest h2h, who are unsure, unable to make a decision as it seems too big, too important, too immediate for them to deal with. Who delay something that could be good, for the day that something they tell themselves could potentially be better comes along. Who tell themselves “not today because I have other immediate priorities right now, but tomorrow though!”. I’ve been there, I’ve done this ad infinitum, guilty as charged. These few occasions before a big ol extended vacation however, have shown me what it truly is to live like any mortal being should.

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