Saturday, November 14, 2015

My Ex called Travel

Let me tell you about my ex called travel. 

He was my escape. He took me to places I've never been before. He made me do things that I wouldn't normally to. I parasailed, rode an elephant, partied with strangers, caught my first wave, went on a scenic hike, biked for three hours, tried exotic cuisine, haggled in night markets.

Durian Sidestreet Stall, Davao 

He made me believe I'm more than who I think I am. He told me I could be anyone I wanted to be. He never judged me when I went a little crazy. He encouraged me to befriend a sweet Malaysian girl I was sharing a bunk bed with. He gave me the extra strength I needed to play foosball with a fun assortment of characters in the living room of the hostel I was staying in.

Meander Hostel, Taipei

He didn't care that sometimes all I wanted to do was stay in and lie by the beach and read, or that sometimes I followed a schedule filled to the brim. At the end of the day, we would collapse together, having ventured far and wide via land, sea and air. He didn't get confused when I lit a candle in a church, offered incense in a temple, or wrote a wish in a shrine. He tolerated me whenever I stopped to take a selfie with one of the "must-see's" wherever I was, or when I took photos of my feet in the sand. 

Nusa Dua Beach, Bali

I miss him. But there was a reason why we broke up.

Eventually, our shared fascination with seeking adventures faded away. It was what held us together back then. Perhaps I turned into Wendy, and decided to embrace my adult responsibilities. Living for the moment no longer appealed to me. Instead of spending to satisfy my urges, I’d rather save for the future. Instead of chasing the night away, I preferred to snuggle close to my comforter. But he was stubborn and remained as Peter, the boy who never wanted to grow up, who lived for the moment but remained restless as he delayed the inevitable.

Playing with Fire, Boracay

Perhaps we broke up because how I define adventure at this point in my life has changed. I am about to turn 28. Now, what excites me is stability. Routine. The ordinary. Possibility has lost its luster; owning up to my choices is now the mantra I want to live by.

That is how we grew apart.

Yet, I will never forget the year we shared. The year I spent all my savings catching the first glimpse of the sun in the empty pier of Asia’s busiest harbour. The year I always left my hometown every long weekend to be with him. The year I tried so many things, explored so many facets of my personality, as my morals revealed themselves in the different environments I became exposed to.  

Sunrise in Victoria Harbor, Hong Kong

Farewell to my ex called travel. 

I am no longer enamored by the idea of you, and the possibilities you bring. I know that the next time you come back to my life, you won’t have the same hold as you did before.Next time you’ll be with me, my intentions will be different. I am no longer running away from life because I no longer want to escape it through you. I am content with where I am. I’ve found the peace I used to searched for in distant shores, mountains and metropolises, simply within myself. I’ve finally come to terms with where I am in life, and don’t need you as a distraction. Chasing the moment is no longer a game I want to play, as I want to take the present as it is – so there’s no need to chase anything anymore.  My compass is simply honoring the things and people that bring me genuine joy and peace as I navigate the waters of this new-old world.

View from Movenpick Hotel Balcony, Cebu

But thank you for showing me another side to myself. And another side of the world. You made me appreciate where I am, and more importantly, you lead me to where I want to be.

You lead me to me.

To the year that was, New Years Eve 2014, Subic

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