The musings and misadventures of a girl unprepared

Monday, 15 June 2015

Change of Direction

Once again I've proved miserable at posting on a regular basis. Honestly, I feel like the more I set writing goals for myself, the more I rebel against them. Much like I did as a child with my parents in fact.

I feel like my writing (in general, not just on here) has recently been lacking emotion and I've felt incredibly distant from it. I think that's what I've been missing in the past month or so, and that rather than suffering from pure writer's block, I've actually been suffering from lack of passion. It's times like these when I really struggle to simply blog about adventures and travel.

I've actually been travelling a lot recently, and having a really great time. I spent an awesome long weekend in Amsterdam with my sister, my good friend Anthony came over from Mexico and we explored London and Manchester, before heading off to Paris to watch the sunset from the Eiffel Tower, and lately I've been touristing up in Berlin like there's no tomorrow. But for some reason, I've found myself un-enthused to write about any of these really exciting experiences.

Last week, a friend repeated a quote to me whilst drunk at a festival that I posted on Facebook a good few years ago.

“You will never be completely at home again, because part of your heart always will be elsewhere. That is the price you pay for the richness of loving and knowing people in more than one place.”- Miriam Adeney

Since she said (rather, slurred) it to me, I haven't been able to get it out of my head. What she got me thinking about is how I've spent so much time travelling and what it's like to feel at home.

I'm not really one to get homesick. I've always used travel as an escape from everyday life, something to turn to when things get bad to give myself a breather from the world. A bit ironic I suppose. However for the first time in my life, I was in no quick hurry to move on from my beloved Mexico City*. And that's not just because it's so amazing.

*I promise this isn't just another blog post about how much I love Mexico. Hear me out.

My stay in Mexico taught me the value that can be found in staying in one place for more than just a flying visit. I became so attached and entrenched in the culture and the people and the way of life, that I'm still finding it hard to let go. As much as I love fleeting visits to cities, I'm finding it harder to write about my shorter excursions, when I've not really had any time to form a bond with a place. Yes, I've had a great time and yes, I would go back (or not, depending on where it is!) but I'm a little tired of sounding like a less-hip version of a Lonely Planet travel guide.

It has also taught me things about myself that I couldn't have learned from a short stay. How to deal with real, strong, long-lasting friendships from a distance; both those from back home and the new ones in the foreign country. How to break through the other side of language barriers. How to deal with being a minority race - being white I'm lucky enough to practically never have to deal with this one in my own continent. How to really integrate into a society once the 'I'm a silly tourist' excuse no longer pays off. You live through festivals and memorials and the mundane day-to-day crap that you definitely don't see on a weekend getaway. Every city has so much more to it that tourist attractions, every person a story to tell.

Of course I'll still be jetting setting at any opportunity, when time and my bank balance allow. I'm not knocking short trips at all, rather just my own attitude towards travel. I think what I'm trying to say is, I don't think I'll be writing as much about the 'normal' travel things I do. I'll always share photos - you know I love a good instagram - but I'd like to start giving a bit more credit to each place that I visit. There's so much history and life and colour all over the world, I don't want to belittle it by simply writing about that trip I took to the Heineken Factory and accidentally drank too much (though I'd totally recommend going, we had a blast).

I don't know why I feel need to write all this in a post, because well, it's not your fault I'm fed up with my own writing style. Maybe it's my first step towards a deeper relationship with my travel writing. Gosh that sounds cheesy.

For those who don't follow my instagram, I'll post some pictures of my latest adventures at some point this week so you can all judge me for buying a selfie stick. Maybe I'll even write a little too.