Saturday, January 22, 2005

Restlessness, Dani

While forging through a new era in our lives countless persons have bestowed advice upon us, lectured into our minds both the importance of education and the importance of a-moral activities, and then at around eighteen, most of us are thrown into a vast sea of collegiate contradictions. I, for one, tremble at the excitement of a new semester arising here at my liberal arts institution, but after only one week of classes and over two hundred dollars in textbooks purchased, underneath I know this hopeful disposition will last only a few weeks, and then in a vast storm of emotion I will probably want to do anything to get out of higher education's most pedantic path.
One moment passes onto the next and I am content in knowing that I am preparing for a future that will, or at least I can hope it will, pay for these lazy four years. I, not unlike many others, do little more than wait for the future to come racing it's way toward me. I can't seem to get over this idea, for I feel as though myself and those who can sympathize with this sense of restlessness, are barely crawling their way toward the rest of our lives. Perhaps it is the sophomore slump, perhaps it is winter in New England, but I for one bravely entertain the idea that I have a problem. Affectionately termed "Locational ADD" by a California musician I know, It is a problem of all passionate persons- a question of what's on the other side of the fence. When I have an "attack" , all of a sudden I am turned into a mad woman,maniacally searching for answers and hidden meaning in everything I do merely because I cant explore the world that I live in. I want to explore and understand everything...really delve into life's every corner. I want to burn, I say this with the quintessential traveling text of Jack Kerouac placed neatly beside my desk. No, I don't particularly want to spend the next years of my life drinking, hitchhiking, screwing and doing drugs as he did. There is however, something to be said for merely getting out there. The college student, the cash starved, the literate, the typically party going youngster, has little opportunity to broaden their immediate horizons. The closest thing is investing interest in their new locale, local things of interest, and of course fellow students.
A really interesting point that my insightful and sometimes offbeat boss made to me in terms of "travel" the other day , was that the mere act of traveling isn't really accomplishing anything either. Jumping from place to place in search of excitement and new faces accomplishes little and perhaps leaves you even more empty. This seems to prove true to for even those friends of mine who are "abroad" in England, California or elsewhere. Yet, I cant seem to shake the feeling that I need to move. Maybe, Its because it is my calling to write about what I see, or at least I hope that is what my future is pointing to.
So what about learning new things? Does that stifle the urge to run as far as I can from everything I have ever known? This is helpful, yes, but proves to be little more than an artful distraction. Perhaps there is a patch for this that will intravenously drip the sights and sounds and peoples of new interesting places into my veins whenever I need its delectable pleasures. Along the same fundamental problem line is the question of the "tourist". How far must one go in a new arena to understand the bowels of its people and culture, and can you ever? Is that what I really want or do I just want to stay in a foreign bed and get drunk on the vapors of new smells and meals that I cant afford.
Although it may not sound like it, I love college because it gives me an outlet for my intellectual curiosities. But until they find a cure, I am currently taking donations for my next plane ticket.


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