Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Destination Anywhere

Nothing feels quite so strange to me as preparing for a trip that I don't want to make. I don't think I've ever felt this way before and I'm not sure why I am now. Ordinarily I'm the sort of person who perks right up at the sight of a new tourist visa, or when making lists of things to take and places to go. None of this is working this time.

Perhaps it's a byproduct of the clouds that have covered Bangkok for much too long, or a lingering trace of my Penang bedbug phobia. Maybe it's apprehension about leaving an extremely imperious cat to his own devices for a week in my apartment. Or maybe it's because I'm finally going to be in Saigon, a city I haven't really avoided, but not one I've yearned to go to either.

The reason I suspect is the cause for my lack of excitement is one I'm reluctant to tell. As banal and boring as it may sound, the trip I really want to be making right now is one that would have me disembarking at SeaTac Airport and heading for the light rail that would take me back to Seattle.

I miss my sons. I'm really not the adventurer I pretend to be, I suppose. The real me is a 62-year-old woman who wants to hug her kids and embroider Home is where the heart is in cross-stitch on a dishtowel.

Tomorrow I'll get on a bus that will take me to one border and then on to another. I will glue myself to the window and stare until my eyes are bloodshot. I'll walk and eat and look and wonder and write things down. I'll get permission to live this life I have now for another stint, if I'm lucky, and during that time I'll think very hard about the second half of this already crazy year.


Ebriel said...

Oh Janet, I hear you, about home and the heart. So hard to be torn between places and people, impossible to elaborate in a single blog post - or a blog, for that matter.

Under the recent influence of a spicy Sicilian bottle of Nero d'Avola, I realized my heart is here (southern Europe), my family is in America, but my ambitions lie in Asia. And how to cobble a life together? The best we can. And it sounds like you're doing a wonderful job of it.

Signed, your errant travel-artist.

janet brown said...

Elizabeth, you and I need a couple of hours to talk when you get back--my place or yours? With food and beer and no time-limit or work-chat.