It is sometimes ridiculously easy to find yourself not having time to do what you want, even when all you have to do with your days is exactly what you want.
I have felt an itch of ought not, of don’t want, of compelled propulsion. I have felt tired, sick and irritable, separate from myself.
When I let myself wait to wonder why, I knew that my body was saying ‘stop’, that my heart was muddled and muddied. And yet the flat black lines of the guidebook begged me on, stories of stunning sights seen tugged me and the map seemed empty without my criss cross path to make sense of empty space.
Even when I heard what I wanted to have space to say, I tried to negotiate with my sense of fatigue.
I fretted and fussed over where to take a pause, poured over reviews of islands, beaches, towns and hostels. I forgot that all I need to stop is just to quit moving, to just let myself be where there is nothing on my to do list but to be with me.
And here I have finally stopped.
I have let the palm fronds wave on white sands without me. I have let the sea’s emerald gleam reflect in other eager eyes. I’ve let my friend go on alone to plumb the deep for other lines of laughter, missing her even before she had chance to leave.
Here, I’ve dropped with a sigh onto a bed that squeaks with indignation, in a hotel where the rocking chair’s creak soothes me through hours of nothing much at all.
My room has no window to let the light in to tap on my shoulder, no views to demand my attention or call my heart outside.
I have found my own hours of light and darkness.
At first I tried to plan even this nothing. But then threw away my attempts at making an agenda for remembering myself, and just listened, watched, doodled and read, scribbling meaningful nothings on ripped out pages.
I have had to laugh at myself, at how simple the messages of silence can be, and how easy it is to miss them, to fall off centre even when the centre is all you seek.
Tomorrow I will pack myself up once more and move again, but I’ll carry more of me with me and just a pinch more peace for the next long bus ride…