We ran into a friend recently who immediately understood something about our current state of mind. “You’re probably pretty good at doing nothing now, right?” He went on to describe what I think most people don’t realize, that traveling for a long time involves a ton of down time (I read twice as many books as normal, as evidence). During his longest vacation – 3 weeks – he found himself so bored and out of routine that coming home was a welcome change.
So yes, after one year of backpacking around South America we have become pretty damn good at doing nothing. As mentioned before, we were burnt out on all the hostel-pushed activities (i.e. ziplining, climbing volcanoes) and spent a lot of our time just going to the central market and cooking meals, chatting with people and trying to find a nice sunny spot to relax. On our journey from Los Angeles to Seattle, friends and family often gave us lists of things we could do in our spare time, but it wasn’t that interesting anymore. Relaxing in someone’s home felt like enough. As our friend said, “You’re like cats now.” I cringe, but maybe.
It’s with this state of mind that we find ourselves settling into our new apartment and basking in the luxury of it all. I get to shower in the same place for a year?! You mean it will be that good everytime?! We seriously don’t want to leave. And while Seattle is having the earliest and warmest spring that I can remember, I’m a whole lot less interested in getting out there than I used to be.
I’m sure this feeling will pass. Obviously sunny weekend days will start to have more value when we start working full time. And maybe we really should be capitalizing on this unseasonably nice weather. But at the moment I don’t feel like I’m missing out, because I’m enjoying what I missed out on for the last 13 months – a home.