If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies, jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness, and fears. ~ Cesare Pavese
Back in 2008, I sold the condo I’d lived in for 5 years, distilled the 10 years of my Toronto life down to 2 boxes and moved to Seoul, South Korea with the Bear. It’s not that we had jobs lined up, an apartment to settle in or any real plan at all…just a sense that it was time to move onto something new. The fact that I’d sold my condo and had nowhere to live, just prodded us faster onto this inevitable path. We decided that rather than rent a tiny apartment at a ridiculous price and suffer through another 3 months of Canadian winter, we’d hit the road in Southeast Asia instead. I’m not gonna lie, it was scary not knowing where we were going, if everything would work out, or what the future would hold. Would we end up jobless and homeless? Would we end up back in Toronto with our tails between our legs?
In the 2 years prior, life had taught us some hard lessons about money, possessions and what was truly important. And I believe that if you are paying attention, all hard life lessons urge you to change the way you live. If you’re willing to do it, you’ll end up on the other side of it, with a higher evolution of yourself. One that is more peaceful, more in integrity and more able to enjoy and contribute to the world.
For us, it was a lesson about traveling light and being unencumbered by stuff, not just physical, but emotional and spiritual as well. How could we be in the world, without getting dragged into an endless consumption cycle filled with things and feelings that were just weighing us down? It’s not easy, and every moment requires constant vigilance, self awareness and conscious choice, not just with regards to buying a $5 gourmet coffee, but also in the more crucial decision about whether to hold onto the toxicity of bitterness, anger or a sense of rightness.
The process of packing things up yet again, is compelling me to assess our progress. Have we been able to travel light? Physically, yes, I think we have been very successful. Looking around our small apartment, I can’t really see anything here that we don’t use regularly. Everything has a purpose and there is very little excess. I’m pretty sure we could pack everything essential or personal into 1 box or backpack each. Emotionally/spiritually? Have we been able to let go of the things that do not serve us? I am not too sure. Everyday is unique and letting go of old hurts, anger and disappointments is a different beast entirely. Let’s just say that it’s a work in progress.