“Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, maybe you should set up a life you don’t need to escape from.”
Just seventy-five kilometers from my front door, I found one of the best camping spots I have ever had. It was a much need reminder that I don’t have to go half-way around the world to pitch my tent, and that there is still plenty to explore in my own backyard.
Ironically enough though, after such an amazing night, I decided that I was done. For perhaps the first time ever, I decided that I would rather be home than cycle touring, and so I turned around and cut my five day weekend cycling trip short. It wasn’t because I don’t enjoy the camping or the cycling anymore, because I do, it was because I realized that escaping on weekend trips every now and again isn’t changing our daily reality. One of the best parts about our long tour was that it was our reality. We weren’t counting down the days until the next weekend, because we enjoyed (not always in the moment, but at least in retrospect) what we were doing every minute of the day, and there was never anywhere else I felt that I would have rather been. Now though, there always seems to be somewhere else I would rather be. While I am at work I would rather be cycling, yet while I am cycling I would rather be back home.
So I headed back home and spent the weekend cooking (one of my new hobbies now that we have a kitchen) and then joined Kevin on a small kayaking-crabbing adventure just outside our town on his day off.
Though there are moments of fun and happiness, both of us are frustrated with our lives here in Astoria for a few reasons. For starters, we are extremely busy (especially Kevin as he works a lot) so really all we do is work, eat, sleep. Every single day. That’s all we do. Everyday is so predictable, and the weeks fly by not because we are having so much fun, but because they are all the same. It’s not that every moment itself is miserable; I actually really enjoy my job in the special needs classroom (at the k-2 elementary school), but simply working, cooking, and sleeping isn’t enough to make me feel fulfilled anymore. I feel as if something is missing now that I have no outlet for my passions, now that I am no longer doing any of the things that I love on a daily basis, but rather on the occasional weekend. It is hard to go from so much freedom and free time to absolutely none of either of these things, and though we both realize that jumping back on the bikes for an endless tour isn’t the solution, we also know that we need to make some life changes in the near future in order to find a balance between all of the things we love and create the sort of life we actually want to live.