In at the deep end


January 20, 2009

I exhale gently and look at the stars.
I see so few now, before the sky was full of them.
That’s what I miss, the stars.
Kashmir, Baluchistan, anywhere where there wasn’t enough artificial light I could see them all.
People tell me the Milky Way in the norther hemisphere pales in comparison to what you can see in the southern hemisphere; it’s a shame I didn’t get to see it.

Identity is a fickle thing, drawn from what you do, but they say it’s who you are.
But, unless you keep doing the same thing you have to draw your identity from something within, otherwise your identity will keep changing.

A cliche, to travel to ‘find yourself’.
While you’re travelling you are a traveller, you talk to other travellers and often identify with them, but if you’re not someone who’s going to travel for the rest of their lives you’re just in a state of change.
Hopefully you come out of that state with some epiphany about who you are, what you want to do; from seeing so many different people gain some insight into yourself.

But I imagine that more often than not you’re simply left with more questions than you started with, completely failing to find the answers and fulfilment you were looking for.

Suddenly you’re thrown back into normality, it feels all the more unreal for it, what was once familiar seems alien, even exhilarating but at the same time frightening.
What do you do next?
The same choices you escaped from were waiting in the wings, they ask you the same questions for you to answer with even less conviction than before.

Of all the things I learned and experienced, the most important, the most like the epiphany I was seeking was that people are far more important than I believed.

I haven’t turned into a philanthropist all of a sudden.
Even though when I gave a small Pakistani girl a pen only for it to be snatched away by her father, ‘She has no need for a pen’, shocked me, it’s not my calling.
Most people you meet are inconsequential, but a few are very important.
They’re not even the people you might expect, many friends are like hobbies, a way to pass the time but ultimately meaningless.
Identifying the people that are important and dedicating them the consciousness they deserve is even more so.

Expecting your important people to present themselves to you is foolishness.
Though I am blessed enough to have met a few of my important people, most of them I couldn’t hang on to and a search for more is my next project.

What I find strange is how little effort is put into the people we meet, how much of a role serendipity plays in such an important part of our lives.
We choose what books with read with great care as to read a dull book would be a waste of time.
But we don’t take anywhere near as much care or put nearly as much thought into the people we spend our time with.

I’m sorry this post doesn’t make much sense if you’ve had no source of contact with me other than this blog, but if there’s one thing I’ve learnt in writing this blog it’s to write what I want to write about, rather than what’s most appropriate.

  • Graham

    It’s nice to know you’re still alive. You had me worried there for a while, what with the lack of blog updates! Meanie :P

  • Dean in KL

    Hi Sam,

    glad you are back, I too was worried a little, thought the yeti may have got you up there in the hill.
    I can see from your writing you have a great future with words if that is ever your calling. you last musings were very good and very true. I would appreciate an email address where I might contact you directly? I have some thought on your trip and writings.

    ride safe, Dean in Kl

  • Sascha

    Makes totaly sens to me!