Written on Thursday, Jan 22.
The universe spit my words back at me today as I battled rain and wind to get halfway to my goal, as I battled the awful Poitiers suburbs to find my awful Poitiers hostel, and as I battled to keep my head while waiting five hours for the reception to open. I said this morning that I was much more a global person and didn’t need the nutrients from home… and today I was as homesick as I’ve been in a long, long time.
There are two other times my words have been spit back at me on this trip:
Buddhism says that desire is the root of suffering. But if I was content with everything I had – a camera, a scooter, time and my journal – then had I defeated desire by giving myself what I wanted? The next day I took the camera to be cleaned and for a whole day I was sure the woman ruined the sensor (and thus the camera). So I learned my buddhist lesson – as long as you’re attached to material things you’re susceptible to their quirks. And even more basic, having is wanting.
Earlier in the trip I wrote about how great it is to have the most profound form of freedom – freedom of identity. But right now I’m finding that with anonymity come some awful things. Nobody really cares to understand you, and they don’t care to be understood by you. It’s very lonely when you’re unhappy. Kurt Vonnegut said that loneliness is the most widespread disease in America, and today when I was writing about it I kept thinking of Holden Caulfield.