What’s It All About?
As a young man living in London, surrounded by the hustle and bustle of city life, tall buildings, heavy traffic, overcrowded neighbourhoods and social intolerance, I find myself feeling increasingly out of place. After all, it isn’t natural, in the words of Robert Wright:
“We aren’t designed to stand on crowded subway platforms, or to live in suburbs next door to people we never talk to, or to get hired and fired, or to watch the evening news. This disjunction between the contexts of our design and our lives is probably responsible for much psychopathology, as well as much suffering of a less dramatic sort”
Fortunately my job allows me to commute outside of rush hour which means I generally get to avoid all the bullshit. Nonetheless, I sometimes find myself being hearded around the miserable walkways of the underground; just one of hundreds of others all trying to rush home in an attempt to save as many extra minutes as I can before being summoned back to work.
I am incredibly unsatisfied with what seems to be a system too heavily focused on the idea of work, with too little focus on quality of life. It just so happens that my salary is actually fairly decent, but even with that being said, it seems the more you earn, the more you lose.
I have no problem with the fundamental idea of work, and I’m certainly not afraid of work, but the unfortunate fact remains that very few of us actually do what we love.
I supppose some people learn to love their jobs, but let’s face it, waking up on a Monday morning is traditionally a teadious event, and it’s not often we hear somebody express their excitement at doing so.
I have a problem with the idea that I live in a society whereby I’m expected to work my whole life to pay a debt to a bank for a house I barely get to spend any time in. It just doesn’t make sense to me.
Life is short, and where I generally believe in planning for the future while living in the moment, I think the current balance is all wrong. With so much adventure out there, why am I spending so much time working to pay bills? At what point do we actually start living?
This is where my nomadic philosophy comes into play. Although I’m actually far from a nomad, I believe in living like one. Yes, I have a fixed abode, but just as I refuse to stay put in any one room, I equally refuse to stay put in one city, town or country for too long.
The world is my abode, and while I’m currently unable to take up a nomadic life full time, travelling as frequently as possible is my only option.
I often get told I travel too much, in fact, some people wonder if I even work! Truth be told, I dislike the idea that one can travel “too much”, it’s a subtle reminder of how subservient we have become to a system that requires us to work a lifetime, have one holiday a year, and resign to the fact that this is what life is all about.
Why must it be this way? Says who? Now, I know it’s not easy with bills to pay, children to feed and limited days off work, but believe me, even taking 3-5 holidays a year is doable for most of us, we just haven’t realised it yet. If I can do it, so can you!
We live in a consumer society whereby we must have the best of everything, luring us into spending excessive amounts of money on things we really don’t need. By saving a little money each month and taking annual leave days in smaller chunks, it’s very possible to rustle up a cheap deal and have a holiday every 2-3 months, even if it is just a weekend break!
I know it’s different with kids owing to school holidays. But for those of you without children, there’s no excuse. What I’m basically saying is, once you start making travel your priority, you’ll find a way. Since adopting this attitude, life seems a little sweeter and I’m one step closer to being the nomad I long to be.
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