Bali Hai

25 Apr

Yes, it has been awhile, and I have no excuses. So, I’m not going to pretend like my life has been busy or spiraling out of control. Neither are true. I just haven’t had much to say.

That’s also not true. I have a ton to say. 99% of it cant be posted to a blog with my name on it when I know I have over 20 subscribers that it would offend.

I’ve been working things out, though. Slowly. My mind feels much slower these days. [side note: God, I’m getting old]

I’ll be 25 in 62 more days, and I feel like I’ve hit that quarter life crisis just in time. I’m not off to buy a motorcycle or quit my job to write the novel of our generation. Though, I do often wonder what would happen if I had enough balls to do either of those things. It seems like the people I admire most are the ones who, between the ages of 21-29, gave up everything to do something risky.

My greatest risk? Taking on more student loans for grad school, which I am going through slowly. Remember, my mind works slower these days.

Even then, my risk is minimum. I’m in a profession and studying a subject that is very establishment. Even when we are studying anti-establishment, it’s certainly establishment.

Why dont people just get up and move away? Why are we tied to things like roots and family albums? Why are we allowing ourselves to only go as far as our paycheck allows? Why do we insist on finding others to tie us down? Why do we insist on anything at all?

Cant we go on with our lives without being tethered like a shipwreck to the sand? Where are our lifeboats and rafts? We are all stuck on this island of wanting to be here and now. To raise more islander kids, to make islander foods, to share our coconuts with our island friends… And all the time, we are missing what’s across that ocean.

What is across that ocean? [Literally and figuratively, though, I’ve been for short periods]

I remember seeing an episode of House Hunters International. It was a young couple, maybe my age or a bit older. They were buying a surf shack in Nicaragua or some coastal country. When asked about their jobs, they had none. When asked about what they wanted to do in this new land, they said retire. I think the man said something along the lines of “Why should we retire when we are young? We can work when we’re older. Right now, I want to explore.”

At 21, I thought he was disillusioned. He’d end up back at home (probably in New England somewhere), crying on his mother’s apron. His wife would be there, clutching some malnourished, mosquito bitten child. They’d have to swim back, so they’re clothes would be tattered and their faces burnt from the sun. They would fail.

I wish House Hunters did updates.

At 25, all I can think about is that couple, eating dates and grapes and other tropical fruit while sitting peacefully in their surf shack. They own a rental shop. Their customers are tourists, but they spend their time laughing at with their ex-pat friends about how they escaped. They have their island.

And I’m here in Chicago. And across the water is Michigan. Nothing looks great when your option is Michigan. [No offense, the Tim Allen parts are beautiful]

Where is my island?


2 Responses to “Bali Hai”

  1. Meatless Meatball April 26, 2012 at 5:12 pm #

    It’s directly east. Just leave the country in Boston or New York, and keep going til you see green rolling hills. You can’t miss it.

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