I have been back in London now for almost 2 months and it has been a whirlwind of emotions and realisations deeply intermingled with dozens of other equally poignant ‘tions. I find myself in a place so foreign and far out of my experiences for the last several years, that sometimes it feels like I have stumbled upon some ancient tribe lost in the jungle for centuries and am trying to figure out the meaning behind Scrotum mutilation (or as they call it here, skinny jeans) and bizarre interaction rituals which seem to have a well choreographed flow behind them.
To be honest, sometimes it can be quite jarring and confronting to be so out of the loop, other times hugely interesting and thought provoking. It is difficult trying to figure out my place here, or I guess, whether I have one at all. I have since returning to the UK been a little all over the place. Walking through the park some days I might start smiling to myself as I contemplate something which seems like an answer or realisation in this Brave New World. Other times I feel all too strongly how different I have become and feel my eyes mist up as a warning that I am about to feel lost and alone in the weird society of one I have created for myself.
It sounds intense, and it can be, but as long as I can remember I have tended towards intense and the extreme anyway. Emotionally, physically and with pretty much everything I choose to do or not to do, I go for it. I don’t like to fuck about once I want something, life is too short for that.
Unfortunately, those who tend to the less extreme end of the scale, and even more so, those who live a normal life, are accustomed to the rituals of their society, and have developed mechanisms to embrace what that society has to offer them far beyond my current ability to do the same. This includes existing on a schedule of living which is far removed from my own, and hard for me to come to terms with.
I have tried to think this through, but being so close to the subject (actually being the subject) means that large swathes of the jungle and its inhabitants lifestyles, and how they might relate to my own existence among them still eludes me as I try and find a path hidden among the trees.
But, when you have as much time as I do, self reflection is not a choice so much as a way to fill a plethora of idle moments, and it must surely have some potential for clarity even if it does come from ideals and notions deeply rooted in my own limited experiences.
Either way it led to this; I feel like a man out of time and out of touch with the majority, in particular with the majority of those existing in Western society. I have met up with some amazing people here in London, and even met some new amazing people unexpectedly. But all of them have lives, normal lives, with friends and family, jobs and obligations, basically the stuff that makes a normal life a life. And me? Not so much.
My time referance is different and I often feel like I am watching things tick by in slow motion, waiting for things is difficult for me anyway because I am not very good at it. So now I have to constantly remind myself that most people can’t just up and drop everything to go have lunch on a Tuesday, and that they only have a holiday once or twice a year and can’t go see some shit just because they feel like it.
It is weird and oft times disconcerting being in a world where my time ticks so differently to the vast majority. In a relationship, in particular one where you have the same goals, this difference is shared and so ameliorates the intensity of what at times can be extremely isolating as an individual.
In Mexico, things were less at odds with my chosen lifestyle because it tends to be quite a transient place for non-local people, those who stay there for longer than a holiday, are people who have also embraced an alternative lifestyle, even if not all that similar to mine, it was less different than the world I currently find myself in.
I guess it will be different again when I hit the road, once I get down to Spain and I am presumably in a world which is more like the one I am used to, but unfortunately all the damn trees keep blocking the view and it is hard to be Ok with that in the moment.
I am in a new place with new people and I am myself a very different person to who I was 2 months ago, which is quite daunting. I think, that at the moment rather than being ok with not knowing what I want, I want everything. Greedy right?
But why bullshit, I want it all. I want to travel and do the things I do, I want the experiences and the excitement, I want to soak up every bit of life available to me while I can, but I also want what normal (ish) people have, because well, that’s part of life too. I’m not entirely sure what normal (ish) life is, I’ve never really had one, but sometimes, it looks kind of nice.
This may all come across as a whinge or a sorrowful sonnet of poor me’s and despair. But I prefer to think of it as an expunging of mind stuff. It’s all in there swirling around in the confines of my cranium, but it is mixed in with a lot of good stuff too. A lot of happiness and some great people making me think about life and what it could potentially hold.
Sure I get sad sometimes, but I am also experiencing a lot of new and exciting things, and as a consequence, joy. If the last few years have shown me anything, it is that my default setting is happy so I know that somehow, at some point, probably once these damn trees get out of the way, things will become much, much clearer. And I might even start hanging out more with the Jungle people.