Saturday, June 4, 2011

Questions of Travel

Today's #Trust30 prompt from Chris Guillebeau is about travel. Where would I go and what would I do to get there?

I'm not much of a traveller. Throughout my life I've experienced free floating anxiety whenever the prospect of going anywhere is on the horizon. "Airport stomach," my first wife and I used to call it, and she claimed she never had it until she met me. I suspect because I made a lifetime of putting things off for tomorrow, a travel date represented the most anxiety-provoking thing for me, namely, right now, today, I have to do the thing that was planned, not just put it off for the future.

I've relaxed a little since then, feeling life's hold a little more loosely. Just starting a new job I don't feel I can take time off in the future. I have traveled little. My favorite city is Paris. I love the historic buildings, the art, the gardens, the Seine. However, I would like to visit Strasbourg, where my brother has lived for years. He has a new family and a baby on the way. Many times in the past he has asked me to come visit him in France. We connected twice in Paris (on each of my visits with former wife and current wife,) but I've never seen his French city on the Rhine where evidently the streets still have German names.

And this not visiting my brother, saving money, making arrangements, making a commitment, is part of a larger picture, hiding from my brother, hiding from fear of being judged unworthy by him and feeling the lash of his criticism. We've both grown and I've relaxed over many years and we see each other differently. He has never not been supportive. Whereas I would be influenced by his opinion, I can follow my own influences, and we can disagree and I can not take it personally and assume I'm wrong or that even being wrong is the question. So engaging with this man to whom I am closest genetically and biologically and yet there is such a gulf between us, not just geographically, carries meaning for me to make this a priority with time and money. And it would be great to take the kiddos, though I am not sure how David will react to the French, he's probably watched too much South Park.

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