Sometimes it hits you when you’re sipping your usual slender mug of hot chocolate from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. That restless feeling seizing you by the shoulders and strongly shaking you. Flabbergasted and speechless, you remain where you are and you say to yourself that it’s just the pressure at work creeping up faster than usual. *Inhale slowly, exhale slowly*

You forget about it eventually and fall back into your routine of mind-numbing work and grocery shopping coupled with mind-body-spirit rejuvenating yoga and reading. You go through the same hum drum schedule day in day until another year comes in with less anticipation than astonishment.

“Oh, the year is over,” you whisper to yourself, caught in between surprise and indifference,

And just when you least expect it, it latches onto you again just after you received news of a family tragedy, of the Patriarch’s passing. He’s finally going to be with the Matriarch who went ahead of him. It’s double whammy – a wintry blast to the heart and an avalanche of guilt as images of Abuelo swim through your mind and parade before your eyes. Wasn’t it just yesterday when he helped you with your sewing project? Dismayed at the crooked stitches on the apron you dared to sew on your own, he proceeds to show you but eventually makes you a new apron to submit the next day. Didn’t he just bring home sweet cakes and corn on the cob from the market? Through the dark veil of grieving you fall back into a droning timetable that threatens to rip you of your sanity while dodging that desire to disappear, to travel. But there’s no escaping from wanderlust when it assails you, filling you with his intense longing to jump off the world.

Travel from the norm has always been a necessity like breathing. In the past, distance was a matter of taking leave of a routinely experience for something novel, as the mind always craves new challenges and encounters. Traveling to exotic places was a bit too much on the budget, but with the advent of low-cost airlines in the region, it has sparked a risorgimento in traveling.  They’re descending upon kith and kin to catch up on who’s getting married, who gave birth etc. Some are enjoying a week in Bangkok and others are trying to locate the best ice cream, looking for the best shoe deals or savoring nasi champur in Ubud.

Traveling is indubitably the panacea for that seasonal wanderlust. It provides space and distance to examine work and personal situations with a level of sharp intelligibility that had dulled through time. Travel allows you to extricate yourself from the knotted state of affairs for a panoramic view of things. What, for instance, is causing the friction between you and your colleagues when you were almost thick as thieves? What is hindering you from taking the relationship to the next level? Or why are you easily slighted by a comment that you normally tossed aside with nonchalance? In certain cases, travel helps to heal the red, puffy eyes and hopelessness after a bad break-up (I still wonder what others mean by good break-ups). It kicks the slugabed out of you, putting you in a new place with various people and circumstances that let you move one – not dwell on the past – with the present into the future.

Journeys, most importantly, help you to find you. Where is that person that lived life with enthusiasm and a hands-on approach? Where is that person that laughed heartily and looked forward to tomorrow? It lets you re-discover your heart and the passion with which you jumped into things and the optimism you woke up with in the mornings. You finally face yourself – after taking several rain checks for numerous reasons – together with the mistakes and transgressions with a strong sense of acceptance dovetailed with the determination to move ahead. You finally ask yourself what you want in life, are you happy with whom you’ve become and where do you go from here – questions that you’ve sidestepped all the while.

Brushing that ennui and restlessness won’t do. It’s time you face it, take a leave of absence from the world and preferably with your favorite drink and book at hand.


4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by i am aoisoba on June 30, 2009 at 9:30 pm

    it’s nice reading this piece again the nth time 🙂

    naks ha! mukang bibo ka sa pag-aayos ng layout ng blag mo ha 😀


  2. Posted by thejellyfarm on July 20, 2009 at 11:47 am

    I dunno…a journey to exotic places seems more fruitful when one has the luxury of money without working. Life’s travels have more meaning. It doesn’t seem that way when one is shackled to the 9 to 5 desk.


    • Posted by rgarcellano on July 20, 2009 at 12:18 pm

      Any place would be wonderful – exotic even – especially if one is dying to get the shackles off and leave the desk. 😉 Exotic place or not, I always love taking the journey.


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