It’s easy to get caught up in the logistics of travel. Rental cars, hostels, activity bookings, highway routes…the list goes on of everything there is to keep track of, not to mention getting various other ‘life concerns’ taken care of. On the eve of my departure from Wellington, about to spend a month traveling the North Island of New Zealand and then three weeks working on a black pearl farm in Tahiti, any excitement I should be feeling is often tempered by to-do lists and general alarm at the rate at which my savings accounts seem to be hemorrhaging money. So there couldn’t have been a better time for me to rediscover this quote from Kerouac in On the Road:
“Then [Neal] whispered, clutching my sleeve, sweating: ‘Now you just dig them [the other passengers] in front…They have worries, they’re counting the miles, they’re thinking about where to sleep tonight, how much money for gas, the weather, how they’ll get there…and all the time they’ll get there anyway you see. But they need to worry, their souls really won’t be at peace unless they can latch on to an established and proven worry and having once found it they assume facial expressions to fit and go with it, which is, you see, unhappiness, a false really false expression of concern and even dignity and all the time it all flies by them and they know it and that TOO worries them NO End.”
It made me go, whoa. I don’t want a soul that needs to worry. I don’t want these next couple of months on the road to be defined by an overwhelming concern for logistics; I don’t want them to be remembered by the anxiety or angst I felt at the time. I want, instead, to be a little more like Neal:
“’That’s right, that’s right’ Neal kept saying and all the time he was only concerned with locking the trunk and putting the proper things in the compartment and sweeping the floor and getting all ready for the purity of the road again…the purity of moving and getting somewhere, no matter where, and as fast as possible and with as much excitement and digging of all things as possible.”
So as I get ready to lock my trunk up tomorrow, I felt I should let you know that you may be seeing a little less of me over the next couple of months. And as much as I would love to keep writing and posting whilst traveling, I’m also ecstatic about the opportunity to just observe, record, and soak up the ensuing environments and experiences. There’s a lot to look forward to – black water rafting, glowworm caves, surfing, hiking volcanoes, hot pools, and who knows what else. Bear with me as I take this time to see my last glimpses of New Zealand, and I can’t wait to share it with you.
“What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing?—it’s the too-huge world vaulting us in, and it’s goodbye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”
Here’s to leaning forward…see you in a few months!