the delicious cycle of ache and free-spiritedness

For each of (the four of) you reading, since you are likely free spirits and scouts and gypsy souls and hunters and purveyors, it only makes sense that you're looking. You're seeking out your next adventure, the journey you never expected, the breakfast of a lifetime.

You are daydreaming of snowflakes landing and melting on the back of your neck. Of the rough hands of a weathered, steady sailor as he pulls you onto his lobstering boat. Of coffee that is truly deserving of the title "divine". You already know about the subway cars, the trolley lines, the Vespas for rent by the day...you know without knowing. You long for the scrapes and mosquito bites that linger fondly after a rainforest excursion. You pine for the smell of fresh earth under your nails and moss tangles in your hair. Biting wind. Wafting scent. Heated hotel blankets.

Ears are aching for that foreign voice who belts at the opera house with painted sets and velvet chairs, or the one who croons in a dimly-lit back-alley bar where not even her mother knows she goes. But the voices...OH those voices. When someone means / feels what they sing, you can feel it, too. The emotion is delivered right into your lap and you can't sit still, or ignore the rush flooding up your spine and to your cheeks.

Enough, already. You know what you want, you just might not know you know it yet. If I may be of any assistance in your search, here are some inklings and belt-notches I've had for inhaling life:

- take an E.S.L. (English as a Second Language) teaching course. It may just enable you to live abroad with a highly sought-after job already in place. Learning English is the cat's pajamas, you know.
- write a song dedicated to a perfect stranger (best to write it with the perfect stranger, if you ask me).
- go to work in a distillery. Scotch.
- make someone give you surfing lessons.
- buy a one-way plane ticket to a city that's lodged within your very being. Leave your trip open-ended. Don't try to write the end before you've gotten there. Just see what happens.
- have a proper English breakfast with Scotch eggs and Scotch and thick coffee (preferably at sunrise, and on a riverbank).
- consider things from an animal's perspective. You never know what kinds of things they're thinking.
- go on a date with a bartender who relishes and revels in life behind the wood. Ask him/her about the most interesting guests they've served.
- spend the night in a hammock in the Yucatan jungle under a barely-there palapa, falling asleep to the sounds of the resident jaguars' throaty words. (I've done this, and it's every bit as glamourous as it sounds.)
- put your face into the snow. I mean right in, without hesitating - that's the key.
- be outright contrary in your apparel for a day. Watch how emboldening a controversial outfit can be.
- take a long weekend in a mountain cabin that has no electricity. Light lanterns. Most everyone's face is lovelier by lantern light.
- walk out into the winter with no coat, hat, or gloves. Better yet, do it in your bathrobe, and run, don't walk. People will think you to be most peculiar, and the peculiarer the better in this world.
- the next time you see something so magnificently and wondermously beautiful that it positively yanks your heartstrings to the very front of your chest and into your throat, scream. Give beauty her voice.

One of the best ones is to enjoy the falling bit of falling asleep. It's the best bit, until you get to the dreaming bit, which is an entirely other ballgame. Never take sleeping or dreaming for granted.


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