Posted in prose

jetlag

imagine yourself in this scenario

You’re on your way to your home country: a thirteen-hour flight which leaves you with a sore body from sitting still so long, followed by an hour at baggage claim in the midst of near a hundred other people pushing and shoving in order to get to their suitcases first. Next up’s the ride with a couple of your family members, who’re in charge of taking you home. You love them, you really do, but sometimes you wish they would talk a little less and let you sit in some semblance of peace and quiet a little more. You only manage to get some time to yourself after the meet-and-greet with every single one of your family members – and those are in abundance. They want to know everything about your life, from the details of your job to the kind of food you eat, from the general weather to the colour of the tiles in your apartment’s bathroom; they won’t let you leave until the FBI-esque interrogation is announced officially complete by all. The moment you land on your bed, tired and weary as heck after the overlong day, you’re wishing for sleep to take over you and grant you a few hours of rest and relaxation. However, sleep takes a while to come; the entire journey’s on your mind, replaying itself over and over, and thoughts about what’s to come in the future simply cannot leave you alone.

or this one

You’re on your way to someplace new, a part of the world you’ve heard a lot about but have never seen in person; in other words, you’re going on an adventure. The flight, however, is thirteen hours long, and by the end of it you can barely stand, you’re so sore from sitting in one position for so long (we’re trying to keep these two scenarios as similar as possible). Baggage claim is, of course, literal hell. That’s not all, though – you also have to suffer through the harrowing taxi ride with the most obnoxious-smelling cabbie you have ever seen – or rather, smelt (nobody’s around to pick you up). The drive to the hotel takes another hour, and you think you could maybe sightsee on the way, and unsurprisingly, the city you’ve landed in meets all your suppositions, living up to the hype… not. This city is grievously lacking in the expectations department; you’d prefer to stare at the cars ahead in the rush-hour traffic than look at any more of the disappointment around you. Reaching your hotel and breathing in the fresh air outside the stinking cab is a prodigious relief. The hotel itself may not have a five-star rating, but its simple decoration, hospitable employees, clean air, and comfortable bed make up for the rest of it. You don’t bother to unpack, instead deciding to kick off your shoes, stretch your muscles and lay back on the bed in blissful content. The moment you land on the bed, tired and weary as heck after the overlong day, you’re wishing for sleep to take over you and grant you a few hours of rest and relaxation. However, sleep takes a while to come; the entire journey’s on your mind, replaying itself over and over, and thoughts about what’s to come in the future simply cannot leave you alone.

compare that scenario to this one

You’re at home, wherever that is. Night has arrived, but it isn’t very late, so you shouldn’t feel tired at all.

But you do. A lot.

You haven’t done anything exhausting today; you haven’t gone out partying or visiting anyone’s houses; you’ve stayed at home and done whatever you liked (although that was mostly wasting time on the Internet). Yet even after a completely relaxing day, you feel as if you’ve just sat down after a fatiguingly long journey: that of your entire life. You want to go to sleep, in the hopes that it’ll revive you, but sleep evades you; you’re too wound up by nothing and everything to sink into sleep. You don’t want to move. You don’t want to talk. You don’t even want to think, although that’s the hardest to actually accomplish. You get pissed off if someone even looks at you wrong (or so you think); everything and everyone around you is irritating, is too much: too much life, too much energy, too much wakefulness. All you want is to be left alone and in tranquillity, away from the rest of the world. You’re bone-weary, exhausted of the life you’ve lived so far, unwilling to go on. You wish you could somehow stop living, stop being alive, without outright killing yourself.

can you see the similarity between the scenarios, with one journey being physical, and the other metaphorical…

or is it just me?

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Author:

"Why do you write? he asked. So I can take my love for you and give it to the world, I reply. Because you won't take it from me." | xvii | taurus | infp-t | bookaholic | meet me where the sky touches the sea; wait for me where the world begins

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