Traveling provides an opportunity to refresh, reflect and reframe.
The refreshing part of a journey starts once I’m in my preferred mode of transport—a bike, a car, a bus, a plane, and rarely a boat because I get seasick.
Travel that refreshes can also transpire when dreaming and meditating. During dreams my only mode of transport is of course my mind, and I can recall numerous exotic journeys. There’s the swimming dreams where I am in the deepest part of the ocean gliding in and out of caves, and these caves are filled with treasure. Another dream finds me flying amongst the stars—this is a recurring dream in which I am Captain Marvel. Yes, I want to be a superhero.
My meditations are often busier than I hope. And I try and not judge this lack of focus. Even if I am ‘judgy’ during meditating can I accept the gifts received during those special moments of interior and contemplative travel? Yes, please.
Before each trip I have the habit of rushing to accomplish tasks that must be moved forward while I’m away. Pay bills, complete reports, reschedule meetings, and usually the final task is to forget to set an ‘I’m away’ auto email.
Packing is always left to the last minute, because the more time I have to pack the more I pack. And still I am an over-packer. I try, unsuccessfully, to not judge that I will stuff multiple pairs of shoes and socks into my suitcase. Peek inside my packed bag and you will find more shirts than days I am away. Invariably I return from a weekend trip, or month long journey, with items I did not wear. Ok, I admit I like this about myself—at 62 I’m not gonna go all Marie Kondo (only keeping things that “spark joy”).
Once a journey begins reflections start. I think about what got me to the place of being on this journey. Reflecting also opens space to deepen my commitment to objectives: get more rest, listen more and accept the past as done; remember that judgment only limits my intentions, not knowing will reveal something and some things can’t be known. Trust.
Reframing can take place anytime—often at the end of a sojourn—and it is in this gift that I can keep on giving. Cliché and true. For example; writing these monthly welcomes allow me to travel in and around the metaphors of how, when, why and where we create. Therefore, I can reframe and state that participating in a performance is another form of wondrous travel.
An audience, myself included, is eager to experience new territory, often a place yet known. Let us be eager to delight in the discovery of the land-of-dance—fiction and nonfiction— and when we don’t judge where the artist has decided to take us what a glorious time and journey it is.
A closing tid-bit: reading is traveling through words. Enjoy the excursion set forth and within.
This article appeared in the November 2019 issue of In Dance.