A week or two and I’m still trying to hash out some thoughts on my recent trip to the nearby paradise, Menorca. I think I’m trying to be too profound in what I want to write when, in reality, I came away from the trip with a few new thoughts on my day-to-day life, but nothing earth-shatteringly new or that which hasn’t already been said (better) before by someone else. But it’s important to me and maybe that’s really what matters.
The trip was a last minute trip, the kind where you mix friends from college + friends from your Master’s program together + cheap flights + wifi + a credit card + wine. An equation for a spontaneous trip to the beach, zero expectations, and a nice bit in the sun. Always a good idea.
Although this was meant to be a casual beach trip, it’s funny how a change in setting reveals a new perspective and allows you to reflect on your mundane, day-to-day world we’re always so caught up in.
A wild island in the Med - obscured paths, plentiful flora, and secluded beaches. We were here before the crowds of the summer infiltrated the island and it was a chance to just be. A capstone to a hectic two years of graduate school, sleepless nights, and personal busyness. A beginning and an end. With all this work, it’s a time where one can easily become centric to oneself and forget that there’s a whole world beyond the little one you’ve created on your own. Distance in places always gives me a distance in perspective and it’s something I crave – a meditation or a reset on your thoughts. Without this type of travel meditation, I am lost and unsure of how I fit into my own life. Yet, busyness has a way of keeping important things at bay.
Knowing this, I struggle with sitting in silence at times. Perhaps I’m not content with just sitting with the dull roar of sea waves because, with no distraction, my mind wanders. Constant activity is a kind of safety mechanism that distracts me from the larger questions, which remain unanswered. The silence and meditation are overrun with petty obligations, keeping me from focusing on the bigger picture and part of the objective for this trip: a moment to meditate on where I am, who I am, what to evolve, and why.
I needed to escape within my escape.
I rest my head and feel the warm sun rest upon me. I try not to run away, but escape within myself. I enjoy a fleeting moment of success, quickly infiltrated by thoughts of obligations waiting for me back home. A daily exercise, I hope I’m just “out of meditation shape” and that the next time it will be longer than a minute…
How can I make this a daily habit? Surely, big travel plans help to focus you on a designated time of escape, but what about the smaller excursions, or even in the day-to-day? A friend once told me to live in your city as though you were a tourist. It forces you to take a moment, be grateful for what you have (and don’t have), and to evaluate what’s important in your life.
Getting back to Barcelona, a city that I’ve come to call my second home, after New York City, and I try to take a new perspective: A tourist in my own home and exploring my city as a daily meditation and a way to silence some of the busyness and approach the larger questions.