Checking in the weather:
Before I left my last stable household and went traveling, I used to lie in bed at night and feel the weight of all the things that I owned pressing down on my chest, muffling me, sending me to the edge of open panic. I was responsible for these things, for this enormous volume of stuff that defined my physical reality. I was tethered by it all.
Sometimes since I left that last house and got rid of all my things I have felt the panic of grasping for what the fuck it means to be me- what am I, after all, without routine, objects, space, familiarity? But that panic has never been so tangible, so real, as the panic of all those things weighing me down.
I have been thinking about this because it's been a year now. I am in Sydney again (still?), in another transient, sub-letted space, working a job and saving my money and preparing to leave again. A year seemed like as good a length of time as any to check in with myself, with how this is going: this traveling, transient, life-in-motion. A life of minimal objects, few plans, and no continuity of space.
Here is the weather-report on that: I am happy. Happily in motion. I am so comfortable in other people's sub-letted or loaned spaces now that I barely notice they are not my own (my own space? What's that?). Some spaces are nicer or more convenient or better fits than others, but the essential state of them not being mine and not being stable is bothering me not at all. That's a nice thing to know.
I have learned this: that there is such a thing as 'my space', and it's important. It can take the form of a closed door for a specified number of hours, or me carrying myself off to a cafe with the crosswords for the afternoon, or occupying a corner of a room with my computer on my lap- it's more flexible than I ever imagined. But I do need it. That the frictions of living with other people's furniture and other people's kitchens fade fast into the background, but I need a few hours to myself & some quality time with my computer sometimes, or I fall apart.
The strangest thing in my life right now is that I am working. I have a job, a real, grown-up job, and it's not like it's the first one of those I've ever had but it is the most surprisingly pleasant one I've ever had. I am astounded to spend so much time being this competent, capable, professional self and to take pleasure in it, even. I think this is one of the first times full-time work has ever felt like anything other than pulling teeth without anaesthesia. It is both a relief to experience (LOOK! Maybe I CAN be a proper, fully-fledged capitalism-participating human being one day!) and a bit of an identity shock (Whoa! Am I a radical queer pretending to be a good corporate worker-bee, or a good corporate worker-bee pretending to be a radical queer?). It is, right now, replenishing the financial stores for another summer stint of radical queer traveling roadshow, but I can almost imagine it being something else. Something like, a lifestyle choice, ongoingly. And that is weird as hell to contemplate.
So. No gardens or recipes or fabulous outfits to recount, right now. I am all about this trippy-as-fuck experience of working-and-liking-it, and about being this small, streamlined, transient little life with few dependent objects, few social connections, few markers of my passage. I am preparing to go again, but I know that the going isn't more important than what I'm doing in the time between now and then. This is all Journey, wherever I am in the world.