It's been a while since I've waxed in self analytic reflection on here. Partly out of disgust with how long it's been since I've had a visual refresh of this forum... and partly waiting to have subjects worthy of discourse... I came to a realization today. An epiphany who's truth resonates ever stronger as I type these very words. Let me get the quote out of the way before the momentum of rant takes this paragraph too far off the beaten subject:
I really enjoy life in transit.
That's it at it's simplest.
Now lets elaborate...shall we?
Oh man... I've got a huge smile on right now. Sitting at an outdoor bus terminal in Mississauga... Square One to be exact:
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I've got my Macbook Pro tethered to my iPhone, borrowing it's healthy, and surprisingly viable 3G connection. I've got a Venti Carmel Machiato to keep my fingers warm when the wind picks up. And I've got the itch to write! No, not the itch... the hunger! The desperation inside that says: get all of these words out, or risk loosing sanity!
I've just missed another bus. That's ok! I'm going in to work on a holiday Monday. Thanksgiving actually. I shouldn't say going into work. I'm going into the office. But to do freelance work. It's pretty awesome having an office to go to. It's certainly unlocked a freedom I've been craving for some time now. Being that I'm someone who always tries to propagate the positives, I haven't been blogging lately. Too much financial worry getting in the way of unabashed enthusiasm. :^)
But now, I have an office to go to. Some pay to depend on. A light at the end of my broke-ass artist tunnel!
And so, I'm happily going in on my day off, to put in some time that will move me forward. Allow me to break free of the financial pressure of freelance. Or more so the TIME pressure of freelance. Of the inability to separate work life from home life. Up time from down time.
I'm spending one more supposed weekend day as a freelancer... so that I can take back my weekends, moving forward! No more will people own me during the times I select as my rest and refute from work. Business calls will be screened during hours of supreme lethargy. And leisure will be penciled into the schedule as a top priority at least one day out of the week!
Oh, here's a bus that will get me to the Subway. The # 20... I think it's a slightly longer trip to Islington station then the # 3. Perfect!
So I'm on the bus now... a bit sad to leave my sweet outdoor seat at the terminal. But my 3G connection comes with me! And I prefer a life in transit anyway. :^)
Back to that!
When I was 9 and 3/4 years old I flew on an airliner alone for the first time. Charlottetown to Moncton. It was a remarkably liberating experience. I was a regular kid rounding out his single digits and headed into doubles, and as such, had a healthy anti-parental disposition. My Father, and the woman I proudly and lovingly call Mom were the establishment, and my not too often seen Bio-Mom was the blurry figurehead and instrument of escapism. I'd see her once every few years, as fate (or behind the scenes adult tomfoolery) dictated possible. Never often enough to form any sort of reality or rules based interaction. She was an escape. Someone, who, though sporadically and briefly, appeared to love and lavish me dearly. Without risk of much reactionary behavioral correction. And I was flying, alone, to see her.
So imagine the pure freedom I felt.
Back in the 90's... a kid flying alone was a super star. Ridiculously lovely looking, sounding, smelling, acting, uniformed women chauffeured me from one check point to another. Passing me between themselves while outwardly reminding one another, and myself, of my importance, independence, and bravery. I was their most precious cargo. The chosen child, unique and revered. They gave me a special person kit; including a colouring and activity book, crayons, and my very own lapel "wings". They even invited me up to see the cockpit!
This was the pinnacle of achievement for a 9 and 3/4 year old boy. The cockpit of an airliner. Of a giant miraculous flying machine. One single instrument on this dashboard would have kept my curiosity satisfied for hours. The hundreds of them in concert together was overwhelming. The only comparable experience would have perhaps been driving an Excavator. But since that didn't end up happening until adulthood, seeing the cockpit of an airliner was IT!
Needless to say, without going into homoerotic detail about the perceived virility of the Pilot and Co-Pilot... I was having the time of my life, and felt like THE MAN.
In this moment... in this process... in this transit, I was totally free. Reflecting on it now, and comparing it in context to the feelings I've had today which have sparked this entry, I've realized something.
The destination was almost never as pleasing as the journey. And I like to go it alone!
Sure, I imagined this person I was going to visit to be the bearer of the freedom flag. But in reality, the visits were never free. So much emotion, contradiction, confusion, and overcompensation took an emotional toll. Anytime you put people in a scheduled "vacation" setting it's tiring. A drain. No, the journey itself was the true bliss.
The true release happened "in Transit".
And this feeling is something I've kept with me all my life and on well into adulthood. I LOVE BEING IN TRANSIT ALONE.
Anyone who has been dipping a toe into the psychological cesspool that is my blog, may already know I get really comfortable in airports alone. This feeling transcends to all places designed for personal transport. The airport is still the favorite. But the feelings can be tapped at a bus stop, in a subway station. Any place where loads of people rush around frantically, and where I can melt into a puddle of cool calm reflection and independence.
Today I have that comfortable feeling. The liberation. I've discarded all responsibilities to any other person, at least for the time I will spend in transit. Once I get to the office, I will again be at the mercy of the clients. But here, now, it's just me. Me and the physical instruments of my freedom. (laptop, cameras, skateboard). No parents, no teachers, no boss. No guidance, no suggestions, no other people's needs imposed.
Ivan and his girl left the condo today around the same time as I did. They were heading to Panera for some baked goods, and asked me if I needed a ride to the terminal. No thanks, I said without really thinking about it. Not that I don't love the two of them. They are great. But I'd rather skate the 0.7 km to the terminal myself. :^)
I lazily meandered to Starbucks before hitting the terminal, and didn't sweat it when I had to go back to make change and missed a couple buses.
I'm comfortable in transit.
Now, there are some stipulations that regulate the free feeling.
It's hard to capture the feeling with another person. I can think of less then a handful of souls who could join me in the flighty feeling and not impede the perceived release of responsibility.
"But airports are places full of responsibility and structure and control"
If you think that, then your not one of those people in my handful. Sorry. But your interpretation of the airports stifling control is just that, an interpretation. For me, it's bliss. I strive to turn those tooth pulling banal interactions into beautiful brightening displays of humility and reality. I pride myself on pulling these strangers OUT of their contrived and scripted routines and lighting them up with some unexpectedly bright and flowing interaction. If you're someone who stresses out, and then takes that stress out on the staff, then we wouldn't work together in my dream land. I make damned sure that I'm the sweetest most personable mother fucker any of them have spoken to all week. A little humility and humanity go a long way in these places. These people aren't pleased about having to ask you to take your shoes off either. And having the freedom to be as polite, or as revoltingly pleasant as I want, is something I usually only get to do on my own. Without someone else who's needs and discomfort supersede my flighty ambitions.
But, the one BIG stipulation, is that it doesn't work when I'm late. Lateness can take ALL of the joy and freedom out of the experience. It ruins the stress free relaxation and turns it on it's head. Late usually means, someone else waiting on another end, depending on me to be on time. If I'm flying somewhere for myself, no problem. I can even miss a flight and not worry one bit. (talked my way into having flights changed free of charge before after missing them.)
Partly why I felt the freedom so strongly this morning. I don't really NEED to be ANYwhere today. It's Thanksgiving.
There was an eerie sense of calm and solitude at the terminal today. The buses were sparsely populated at best. The sprawling mall parking lots, completely vacant. Everyone is at home. But not me. I'm in transit. Glorious transit.
The journey has changed gears again. I just looked up from my seat to see the subway train is at Old Mill Station. We cross a bridge over a river near, you guess it, an Old Mill, and for a brief moment, natural light fills the train car prompting me to look up. A track that was once underground, plunges outward over a brightly lit abyss. This is also a short window back into Cyberspace. The iPhone grabs just enough of a connection for a Tweet or status update between stations.
But I pay little attention to that fact, as I'm busy trying to allow my fingers to dance out these words as quickly as I think them. It's hard for someone born just on the technological cusp. And who didn't adopt and accept typing as early as some of his contemporaries. I don't type with two fingers... but I'm no stenographer either.
So the transit period has ended. I've arrived at my destination, for now. Here I will sit, and bang out design work corrections. Cross t's, dot i's, until I can take no more of the stagnant geo-location and have to resume the transit.
I don't know where I'm going tonight. I've left my options open. I'd like to go exploring somewhere. I brought my cameras and laptop... surely something will be created. :^D
I'm going to allow myself to be satisfied with this entry at it's present length. No need to try saving the world. It's a first step back into the swing of Blogging. I should really cherish these next few weeks of working downtown, while still living in Mississauga. After all, I will soon live downtown, and not have a need to spend 1.5 hrs moving from one place to another by myself. I'm about to buckle down for a long season work and discovery. So that I might be able to financially build myself back into position to resume transit once again. I've got bills to pay, and a Vanagon to repair and rebuild. For now, I'm blessed with a great deal of bus and train riding in the weeks ahead.
Enjoy the Ride!