Response to Erica
I continue to grow. Not only spirtually but emotionally. It's funny. I always considered myself a shitty traveler until this trip. I realized I need two things to be satisfied with my endevours. 1: A challenge. 2: Meet people. I am exceeding in both of these catagories. Cambodia has been a complete digression from Vietnam, in terms of infrastrucute. I feel as though I am out in the African Sahara at times. It was dry, dusty, and flat. The people here seem quite warm, but it takes a bit to peel away their confused exterior. I think I waved to maybe 100 kids today. This is not an exageration. Jessie will be meeting me in Phenom Penh in two days, as you may already know. It is perfect timing for me. I would love the added company. Traveling alone has been fantastic, but I have to admit there are times where I would love a partner to experience things with. I feel as though my main goal of this trip, an improved state of mind in my independent mind has been drastically reached. Today was a perfect example. I didn't see a single Westerner for the 3rd day in a row, my bike broke down, I got lost for about 3 hours. But I didn't really care. I remained calm and level minded. Not only this, but I have fully adjusted to the rythem of traveling. Moving nearly every day. Being uprooted and set back down. I kind of like it. In my previous attempts to travel, I was constantly stricken with home sick, or some type of thought that transfered my potential of contentment elsewhere. Now, I make as much of an effort to just look around me and soak it in. I know I will look back on these days as some of the best in my life. And for that I am sincerely proud of myself. The travel bug is now deeply dug into my outer membrane. I already have thoughts for what I will be doing next. I have thoughts of taking a year or so to go across China, Nepal, Mongolia, parts of the Middle East, Turkey, etc... Maybe down to Eygept if I make it that far, depending on their current political situation.
I am glad two of the countries I have looked forward to the most are last. Burma and India. I really enjoy the isolation of countries that are a bit less traveled. And given it will be the hottest time all year, there shouldnt be many Westerners in line with my travels.
I've changed my thought process to be much more analytic than it was previous. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance has played a role in this I think. I just love how he disects problems down to their foundation. When you simplify a given problem down to it's roots you can objectively rationalize the reasoning for growth. For example; there would be times where I wouldn't want to pull over on my motorbike in the random village into some market. Now despite that inclination to resist, I would push myself to do it anyway, and 100% of the time, it would be an event I am glad to induce. Usually it would result in meeting a local. And at worst, I get a couple distasteful stares. But if you truely sever this thought, and rebuilt it, you will see that it stems from something. Something beyond an immediate conciousness. So I would ask myself at the most basic level, why am I hesitant to pullover in this crowded market devoid of any non-locals? Once I answered this, it became eeirily simple for me to change my previous physiological response. The answer that arrives is this. I am afraid of the attention it will subscribe me to, and the possibility of an unwelcoming exchange. Both of these hesitancies I am fairly sure emanate from devolopment. Specifically high school with my social anxiety. I was terrified of the attention. And to think people would dislike me was scarring.
But now it all seems different. I see both of these reactions as completely irrational. And stupid. Fuck the result or consequence of my interactions. I will act as a kind, humble, being. What people derive from that is beyond my doings. I started thinking of being back home. I was in state of perpetual contentment and discontentment. I had no clue what I was doing with my life. And I felt as though many things I wanted to do with my life were somehow unconquerable. That I would fail miserably, so why bother attempting such pursuits. Now my mindset has flipped to a near 180 degrees. Now I see my relationship in this world a somwhat limitless. Whatever I put my mind to can be achieved. It's just a matter of becoming passionate in whatever that may be.
And for that reason I am greatly excited to continue my life back home in Seattle. I have a couple new hobbies I plan to take up. One being DJing. I realized that my procrastionation in such affairs was also a result of this fear. This fear of what people would think. If they would like the music etc... Now I don't give a shit. I am going to do this for me. And even if I do give a shit, I know finally undertaking this as a hobby will show me that I can do whatever I want. You just have to put in the effort, and ignore the results. Or at least be objective to the results.
I also want to start making videos. I can't wait. My god Erica, some of the footage I've accrued thus far for my video project has been spectacular. I really thing it will be a piece of work when finished. I am truly hoping to inspire others to get out there and see the world. The positive effects on your pysche from traveling are infinite.
That was fun to write. I really need to wait until the words come to me and writing can be fun. Anything forced and I want to delete it all.