I feel lighter.
I don’t know if the elevation had anything to do with it, but being in another country with entirely new friends and an entirely new routine, has alleviated pressure from my day to day thoughts. Back home I walk around hauling societal weights, whereas here I’m able to stroll fairly carelessly. I talked a little bit about this in my Bangkok post. There are no assumptions about me, nor do I have assumptions about this place.
That lack of understanding has thrown me into a freefall. Where I can do backflips in the air, spin around, do whatever until I smack against Bhutan’s mountainous terrain. It’s a good experience for me. The standard riff-raff that I put myself through back home, small or large, can be disposed of here. I can look back and see how unnecessary my usual inhibitions are.
The question of “why?” back home turns into “why not?” here. I can’t seem to justify the normal restrictions that I’d put myself under back in Colorado.
Not to say that travel is a quick fix to social inhibition or rigid living, but I definitely think it’s a nudge toward the antidote. Travel requires one to accept outcomes because assumptions simply don’t work as well. Something as simple as going to the bathroom can turn out to be much different than expected. This is especially so if it’s a different culture entirely.
I’m not sure what I’d think if I was in Greece or Australia right now. Maybe I would still feel the same pressures. Maybe not. Either way, this past month being in Bhutan has allowed a freedom which I knew of, but didn’t know how to quite how to grasp.
It could possibly be Bhutan’s culture, but I doubt it. It’s possible that it’s merely the escape/change from my usual responsibilities. I’ll have to talk to others who’ve studied abroad back home to know for sure.
I’m hoping that this mindset sticks with me when I cross the Pacific and fly back to the states. I’ve been told that it does, but I’m weary of falling right back into place. Life is much nicer without inhibitions
By no means do I feel complete freedom. I still feel tinges of restraint and doubt about trying particular sports or going to unfamiliar places, but the bar for trial is significantly lowered. Getting my mind to say “yes” is far easier here.
Back home I remember looking forward a month, to when I’d be in Bhutan, and wondering if it’d ever actually happen. I remember thinking the same thing before the John Muir Trail last summer as well. “Something is bound to go wrong,” I’d think to myself. Then, a couple of weeks would pass and I’d be sitting, typing on a laptop in Bhutan, or endlessly walking through the high sierras.
Right now, there’s a significant weakness to the idea that something will stop me from achieving something I set out to do. I, of course, need to continually attempt to actualize my desires in order to prove just how do-able they are, but the last two big adventures have seemed to work out well. I feel like in most anything, it’s all about the follow-through. Whether it be tennis, relationships or making a living, I’m starting to think success gets a whole lot more probable when hesitation is out of the picture.
I expected travel to be quite different. I don’t know what I thought it’d be or what I hoped it’d be, but I’m now in Bhutan, feeling good, living a life the same as everyone. Maybe that’s what these ideas are all coming from, an new perspective that life is the same everywhere, so why not make the most of it?
I flip between thinking that I’ve been changed for good and feeling the effects of this trip fading away. I’d like the feeling to stay, but it’s could be fickler than I realize. My fingers a crossed. Maybe I should just stop thinking too much about it.