“It is necessary … for a man to go away by himself … to sit on a rock … and ask, ‘Who am I, where have I been, and where am I going?”
― Carl Sandburg
It has now been almost a week since I’ve returned. When I left I had a goal in mind of making some decisions. I wanted some clarity on the direction that this next stage of my life would take. I had some vague ideas but no clear cut vision of what I wanted. I hoped that distance from the day to day would give me this.
I saw many impressive things on this trip. I traveled to Venice and Rome, Athens and Barcelona, cities that were somewhat mythical to me, a lifelong reader about places I had yet to see. I saw some of the most impressive works of art of western civilization and met many people. Yet still no answers were forthcoming or at least not immediate ones. Oh I learned a few things about myself and remembered others. I love the water and travelling upon it. Exploring new cities makes my heart sing. I have a knack for languages and love trying to speak to people in their native tongue and I love the stories that people tell. I love in-depth exploration of ideas and people more than I like skimming the surface in any kind of social way. I would much rather be a visitor to a place rather than a tourist. Visitors tend to be more welcome and less interested in seeing the sites and buying trinkets than tourists. I would rather eat in small roadside places with people who live day to day than in fine restaurants with other tourists. I am fascinated by what other artists produce.
How can I use those facts in a constructive way? That I have yet to learn.
Oh a few things have come from it. I love the masques that they sell in Venice and would love to see what I could do in that medium. I have a new idea for a set of tarot cards based on Venetian Masques. I have lots of inspiration for art and more motivation than ever to finish the things I’ve started.
All in all, as I sit on this rock (well chair) and reflect I find these things impressive and encouraging. Yet the journey is always beginning, ending and in progress.
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