climbing, travel
Comment 1

Soul Searching in Finestrat, Spain


So I’m in Spain. In a climbing hostel in the small town of Finestrat, to be specific.  I’m still a little baffled about how exactly I ended up here, but I can say that when someone offers to barter with you for tutoring, you should just go with it. Especially if you’ve already rationed off the time for “soul searching.”

I’m trying to make peace with that term but to be honest I kind of hate it. Are you searchingyour soul or searching for your soul? More importantly, what do you expect to find?

It seems like people often say they’re “soul searching” because they’re uncomfortable saying they’re uncertain, that they don’t know what the hell they’re doing, or (god forbid) that they’re doing nothing. Rest assured, I am fully happy admitting that I am all of those things (and more!) but sometimes it’s hard to explain that to people. 

Instead I wish I could explain my perfect occupation, to which I will soon be happy to devote myself.  I wish I could explain the thrilling plans I have to use the degree I supposedly got, but the truth is I haven’t got a plan and sometimes I wonder if my degree is even real. It’s hard to explain (to both others and myself) why I quit a perfectly decent job and moved back to my parents’ house, so I don’t. I just say I’m Soul Searching, and then I try not to gag as the words come out of my mouth.

photoAll I can really offer in way of defense for being uncertain, not knowing what the hell I’m doing and, in fact, doing a lot of nothing, is that it’s the only thing I haven’t tried yet. I’ve been driven, I’ve been efficient, I’ve worked hard and I’ve reached all sorts of goals- yet none of it brought me more than a fleeting sense of satisfaction, usually based on someone else’s approval. So in hopes of finding the bedrock photothis soul’s supposed to stand on, I decided to just hold still, keep my eyes open and let myself settle to the bottom.

What’s strange is that as soon as I resolved to do this, I got swept over to a different country, where I’ve been surrounded by endless winding roads and more limestone than I could climb in a lifetime. A nice Spanish lady grabbed both my cheeks and my ass during our brief conversation this morning, and a few days ago some Germans offered me their dachsund as we rode through a thunderstorm. Last night I got to walk home through impossibly narrow streets as the sun set over the olive orchards and a sea breeze tickled my face. I’ve learned British climbing grades and I ate some baby squids.

Ah, yes. I can feel it all becoming clear now…

*  *  *

1 Comment

  1. allison says

    That bike was an awesome one.

    I hope you find what you’re looking for. Sometimes there are no easy paths.

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