A Travellerspoint blog

Redress the balance


This experience is absolutely the best and biggest thing I’ve ever done but it would been unfair representation if I didn’t admit that it has its more wearing side. I certainly couldn’t do this forever. I’m not keen to get back just yet but I know when I do I’ll be happy to be home.

People suggest in emails from home that they are reluctant to tell me their news because it somehow wouldn’t be interesting in comparison. Let me assure you that the more you’re away from home the more you appreciate the deeper relationships you have at home – and part of that depth is knowing the details of your loved one’s lives. They were interesting before, why wouldn’t they be interesting now?

In some ways I miss the small details of my own life – I feel like I’m living in headlines statements at the moment and while that’s what I signed up for and am thoroughly enjoying it’s a strange thing at the same time.

So I thought I’d share with you some of the tiring things about travelling to balance the scales a little

  • Having the same conversations over and over again
  • Never having time to get to know people properly, or too much forced time with people you don’t really have anything in common with
  • Squeaky doors in dorms :)
  • Rarely having any privacy
  • Being a constant focus of attention immediately you step out the door
  • Constant communication misunderstandings and sometimes inexplicable struggles to understand and be understood
  • Battling for fair treatment in any kind of service or trade situation
  • Remembering to handwash every few days and finding some way to do that
  • Rarely having more than one nights in the same bed and having to stay packed
  • Rarely being able to eat what you fancy when you fancy
  • An awful lot all conversations with resident people end in, or indirectly contain, some kind of request or sales pitch which makes it difficult to know how far to enter into any kind of conversation and cheapens earlier getting-to-know-you chit chat
  • Never remembering where the lightswitch is
  • Always knowing you’ll have to get dressed and hike to the shared bathroom in the middle of the night if you wake up

None of these (or even the entire combination thereof) are reason for you not to do this sort of thing yourself or myself again in the future cos I’m loving it. And some of these things I knew would be the case in advance but the reality is of course in emotional 3D. The thing I’ve come to realise is that the reason I have a *home* is that the inherent life-shortcuts I create by surrounding myself by the ultra-familiar is that I can concentrate instead on the more important/interesting details of my life and the lives of others…and not knock into tables looking for the lightswitch.

Posted by rachndave 12:39 Archived in Malawi Tagged observations

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