The Magic that is the Road of Many Colours
On Jun 9th, 2014
With 1 Comment
There was definitely something at the start and for a great deal of the time whilst bashing away the first ten months of The Road of Many Colours where an undefinable quality was always present. Day and night it was present when problems presented and they were easily solved.
This feeling was quite unlike anything I have been privileged to feel before. It was like a total body calm that overwhelmed you. It allowed you to breathe, smile and deal with matters one at a time wisely and with clarity.
Whether it is the by-product of a journey which has been so long looked forward to. Whether it is the fulfilment of an expedition that is truly different that ticks all my personal boxes and makes me feel special for the first time in my life – I just don’t know.
It is probably a bit of all of these things.
Is it still there for certain moments. I feel it when I have met certain people, hugged them, shaken their hands or even just shared a nod from a wise old man at the road side. Strangely I feel it clawing its way back. It’s not all there yet, like the beginning, not fully, not every day, but reappearing little by little as the pressure of all the planning and all the effort of overcoming self doubt is lifted again and as I am finally realising a dream.
It was easily lost and I think it disappeared around the time I was ill in Xanthi Greece, pulled over and flattened by the effort of it all after so many months continuous pushing.
Perhaps my mind became clear, perhaps it was finally healing and the last vestiges of my brain injury had healed – I don’t know. I certainly feel more awake, more in tune with everything, more conscious and more alive everyday. This isn’t necessarily good for long potentially trip threatening boring stretches. Where previously I had a lower threshold of disinterest in what I was doing now I am hunting for things to think about, photograph, draw stories in my mind.
I guess too much pontification, prevarication and analysis will spoil any chance of the magic returning. But I think it’s going to be really important to have it come back. I shall create an open minded space for its return. A place where I can giggle to myself on a daily basis as I used to – I’m doing this – I am really doing this! It is so special. People are friendly, happy, even joyous to meet. They want to spend time with me and I want to with them.
I love my day job. I have loved most parts of this trip, despite being preoccupied with the mechanics of getting from ‘a’ to ‘b’ for most of the time. I have always made time to pull back and indulge my pleasures and make sure I enjoy it.
I need it to come back. Last night was scary and very real. After some horrible realisations about Afghanistan, I had crystal clear visions of the isolation and loneliness of crossing the Stans. I could clearly see the lack of creature comforts, people to talk to, facilities or water and it made me panic internally rather than be excited by the challenge. Deep down I am excited about many different aspects of what is to come most of the time. The challenging bits are the ones I am most looking forward to. They will certainly be the fertile playgrounds for the magic. The ‘I didn’t know I could do that’ times. The stories and the unknown adventures that will make the memories, experiences and even perhaps the book. This is the stuff of life for me that will hopefully make me a stronger, happier, better and perhaps even fulfilled person.
If you know what a grumpy old sod I have been, even as a young man, then that has got to be magic then… hasn’t it?