Saturday, December 21, 2013

Looking Back

It's a superstition that has existed in many cultures throughout time: don't look back. Orpheus looked back and lost the love of his life. Looking back before a long and dangerous journey brings bad luck and misfortune to a traveler. That is why, through the journey of life, people continue to look forward and keep moving.

As yet another chapter of my life is nearing it's close, I am fighting the urge to look back. I cannot say that I have done everything here that I had wanted, but I met a few wonderful people and that's all I could have asked for.

With graduation nearly a month away, I find myself gazing at this city not wanting to look away. I wished away my time and now that it is gone, I want more.

To look back is to hold onto something, someone, or someplace that is no longer mine. The only thing to do is look away, turn up the headphones, and get ready for the rest of my life to start.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Nomad's Guide to Minimalism

I've settled back into my apartment, the mess has returned, and the livin' is slightly easy if you ignore the fact that I am working and going to summer school full time. The mess mind you is much smaller than it has been in the past because I've brought very few things back with me.

One thing I have done in light of recent nomadic happenings has been to lighten my load.

Last year around this time, I was in full nest mode, placing knick-nacks and frames in every nook of my apartment. Though comforting, it made for a difficult move. This year I have taken a more minimalist approach to living. I have some shelves, a futon, my clothes in baskets, and a small Turkish rug. Besides a few pictures of friends and family, I am relatively item free. In combination with my bare white walls, my minimalist style could seem boring. But it's actually quite cozy, with the added benefit of little packing on my part.

I'll be moving every four months for the next five years. Over time I'm sure my possessions will change, growing and shrinking with the size of my carry on bags. Because of this, I'm focusing more on collecting stories, moments, and if I must property that's portable. I don't need anything weighing me down.


Friday, May 3, 2013

Warning: Baggage May Appear Lighter Than It Really Is

One of the main difficulties of nomadic living is "stuff". Having just witnessed one of the strangest winters North Dakota has ever seen, it was nearly impossible for me to repack my clothes. My coat, sweaters, boots, and warm clothing had managed to breed and multiply in my closet during my co-op. Even worst, I was returning to warm sunny 70-80 degree weather, so it made no sense to wear my bulkiest clothing.

So I did two things:

Donate- Though I had only packed enough clothes to get me through 4 months of an arctic winter, there were still plenty of clothes that I either didn't wear or was just sick of looking at. These I folded into a bag and donated to the nearest thriftstore. If I had more time, I might have tried a consignment shop so I could have at least made some money back.

FedEx- Mailing made sense not only for bulky clothing that would weigh down my luggage, but also for bedding, furniture, souvenirs, and knick-nacks that were too big for my carry on.

Other than the fact that I was unable to mail my things because FedEx was closed and am still waiting for my roommate to mail the boxes, this was a pretty good method. I was still able to fit plenty in my luggage without going over the airline's weight limit.

Now the next challenge will be packing my summer bags.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

An adventurous life...

does not necessarily mean
climbing mountains,
swimming with sharks or
jumping off cliffs.

It means risking yourself
by leaving a little piece of you behind
in all those you meet along the way.

I never understood that fully until today and  maybe I still don't.
For months I have dreamt of the day that I would leave this cold, ice stricken land of North Dakota and return to the sunnier lands of my schooling. But as time passed, snow melted away, once dangerously slick sidewalks became torrential puddles, and I grew fond of this place.

And its people.

Today is the last time I will ever see my Northern friends.  That being said, we may cross paths again, but the likelihood of that is slim. Some I have already said goodbye to, others I am still denying that. I don't want to leave, but at the same time I do.