Eat, Pray, What?
I must say; stories of authors who write themselves into a new life never get old to me. Okay, the desperate search for romance may get a bit stale, but the trope of writing, eating, remaking the world around you, and creating your own family... none of that bores me. I'll admit, it's a bit of a cliche, but something about that "Eat, Pray, Love," "Life Azure Like It," “Under the Tuscan Sun,” travel novella style book really calls to me. Not the fact of being away from home (though that certainly doesn't hurt), but it's the remodeling process of self and home that I love so much. That broken human coming to a broken house / restaurant / holistic medicine centre and transforming it into something special. Something new. Something beautiful. Somewhere between changing the drapes and adding a plant here and there, they suddenly look up and see a transformed space. And the same, drastic renos are evident internally.
I think the reason I crave a change of locale so much is not, in fact, about a change of scene, but a change of self. I feel that old layer of skin itching, ready to shed, but in a city and home where everyone knows me, I feel like everyone's watching, and shedding is not always the most flattering process. So I wait.
Or I hug my skin around me to hide the fact that I am different now.
I think that's why people move half-way across the world to have these life-altering epiphanies. The equivalent of a snake crawling into a burrow or somewhere safe to moult, hiding itself away while it's the most vulnerable... There's a reason that there's a whole literary genre grown from this. It's because change is easier in hiding. But what of us who have no expensive plane ticket to destination transformation? What of us who are subject to the creeping lows and highs of mundane life and slowly want to improve our existence? Is there a literary genre for this? For the stay-cationer who wants to moult without running away? For the writer who doesn't wait for a drop in airfare or a spike in courage to take action? I have never been one to wait for a sign from the heavens to give me permission to start a personal revolution. I have simply decided, at certain points of my life, that THIS is what I'm going to do. I'm going to walk a bit today. I'm going to write a bit today. I'm going to not think for the next ten seconds.
This is how all the impactful change has been made in my life. Not with plane tickets or grandiose promises. Not with whims or desires. But with small adjustments here and there, right NOW. No promise for tomorrow, no continued expectation, just "I can do this right now, so I will." And then those moments add up. So I guess this is the beginning of one of those journeys. Not a journey with flighty action or sweep-you-off-your-feet flings. But hopefully a journey towards that same sense of newness, of adventure, of transformation, and of self-love.
…. Without the pricey ticket.