East of here, through the mountains, the Washington land produces sweetness. Sugars for which it is known. The almost three hour drive from my house offers an array of landscapes to stimulate the journey…moving from freeway emerald city urban, the deciduous ski country, giving way to fertile low lands, and then desert shrubs, and then, pow! Areas of orchards, vineyards, speckled with huge barns that read FRUIT ANTIQUES!
I guess the tradition here is so old that you can purchase fruit antiques.
Eastern Washington speckles color right now, the fingers of the fauna shooting off color and teasing the eye…maybe you’ll find something sweet here.
I needed to get away this weekend. I required, as the saying goes, “a change in perspective” What was so wrong with the perspective I was taking before my trip? Two words jump to mind: anxiety and complacency. The anxiety I believe boiling up and down due to all the negativitiy and uncertainty surrounding me these past few weeks. You see, it is in my job description and most likely personality structure to find things that are deficient, impaired, weak and “fix them.” I pay attention to the uncomfortable aspects of experiences, both on a case by case basis and on a cultural level. It is ingrained into my demeanor to notice such energies and analyze them, and most often, to respond to them in order to give way to relief, or improvement of some sort.
And my experience has lead to efficiency at it.
Yet, one cannot provide sufficient relief for many problems. Suffering often sums up greater than the hope I am engendering. It is in these seasons, usually a period of 5 weeks, that I find I need to “reset” “revision” and allow myself to accept grace and start my perspective fresh.
Thus, the escape. For me, traveling (which is self defined as staying at least one night away) most often enables this catalyzing change in perspective.
This weekend I found myself saying “everyone is so more friendly around here.” They would recommend that I spend my money at different business than their, they would throw their heads back in easy laughter, they would easily reminisce about a story and so easily shared their passions when encouraged. One man called me “trouble” which I am when I am my most authentic happy K. And this got me to acknowledge that perhaps it wasn’t just the people of the place that were more open, more congenial and approachable and more community-minded. It was me. It was my fundamental approach to the experience to embrace it fully and make the Positivity mine. Now, it’s true the equation doesn’t always work that way. Sometimes the people aren’t so friendly no matter how open you are (I think of Paris). Even then, however, I do believe it is a synergy, this traveling. Traveling can reveal insecurity (let’s say with French pronunciation) and a sense of inadequacy (in navigating Paris’ streets) and a feeling of inferiority (in anything artist or edible). These feelings may be carried like invisible luggage and that burden may prevent you from truly being free and thus you don’t find the place or the people or the experience liberating at all…
Most of the time, however, I like the version of myself when traveling. I am more capable, more grateful, less analytical, more trusting of my intuition, less goal oriented and more gracious all around. This weekend I found myself noticing light, watching the colors around me more easily. I shot pictures without action or identification in them at all. This is not like me. I’ve expressed to others that I disdain about traveling pictures…you can’t even tell YOU were there” I like to stamp my pictures with something connecting me to it. Functionality is key. I consider “will I print this? Would someone actually like to look at this picture? Place it on a fridge.
This weekend, however, I took multiple shots of the same object just for the exposure to multiple perspectives. A young bud of practice…
The change of perspective, whether gained from traveling (to wine country), the words of an expert (it’s cancer) or a relationship (Mom, I want some more water) powerfully marks our lives in a way that we too quickly habituate to. I want to be the “Traveling K” more in the “Normal Day K” or even the “Weekend K” or “Lunchbreak K”…
Who are you when traveling?