I am sometimes tired of listening to folks who only think in terms of how comfortable they want their life to be. I want to talk to people who think in terms of how varied their experience is.
Countless people I speak to consider buying a car as a big event, getting a house as a priority. They have those subjects on their lips all the time, along with their work, and not much else.
I am the opposite of this. I don’t care that much about how big my house is, not now, and maybe never, as long as I have enough space for my mind to wander. I don’t care how fancy my car is, as long as it brings me where I need to be in a decent manner.
Before my home – which is important, don’t get me wrong – I want to think of my experiences. Sailing across the world, hiking weeks in the Himalayas, getting lost in the forests of Kyrgyzstan. Talk about the contrast, the details. Talk about the time we had to climb a mast at night to change a halyard, how bad the snow was yesterday when I went skiing, how cold the water was when I felt overboard the other day, how exhausted I was after sleeping in a cave on Mont Hood.
This is what makes me live, what draws my attention, makes me want to go forward.
I spend enough time at work to not want to speak about work. I spend enough time living in an apartment not to think about the next one until I need to plan it. The housing market isn’t something I am going to study deeply to understand where and what I will find that will be the best price. Besides, I would rather keep my money for my travels, to get a boat, and see the world while I can.
When you raise those experiences with these folks, they answer with the beginner’s voice. They will claim they want to learn how to ski, but maybe will try or have tried once or twice. They will claim they want to get out on the water, but what they really are after is a beer looking at the sunset. They will claim they want to go hiking, but they won’t want to wake up early. They would rather dream of the experience to live it – or not dream at all – as their mondain, comfortable life is really their priority. They scratch the surface and pretend to know enough of the iceberg.
To each her or his own, sure.
Time is non-linear. The deeper your routine, the faster it goes. For me, the need to go beyond, further, outside of my comfort zone, and in nature is both an answer to a primordial call, a need, and a way to escape time. Time is passing too fast when entrenched in routines and we don’t have enough of it.
Do you remember, when you go running uphill, hard, and after some time you watch your watch and discover that what you thought was half an hour is only 10 minutes? That type of time compression occurs only when you escape the routine. When you climb up out of the comfort zone, either physically or mentally.
Don’t stay in the pits of time. Of course, I am not one of these extreme climbers, skiers, or sailors. I am good, enough to push me to get further. I have done things that other will do and have done, and not push any boundaries apart from my own.
But sometimes I feel that I am fighting against an invisible cage. A cage built by society, by those discussions, by all those mondain behaviors that I have, somehow, been led into.
I got to get better at killing the routines. At getting out of that cage.