Seven or so years ago, I was at university and severely depressed. I could barely peel myself out of bed in the morning, I didn’t have the energy for anything. Going to the kitchen to make breakfast was like climbing a mountain, so most days I didn’t bother. It was easier to starve. Eventually, the hunger would become too painful and only then would I stumble to make a sandwich. I was completely unmotivated.
If I had to describe myself with a word, it would be, “Meh.” A word for somebody with passion, “Woohoo!” I think of them running through life. A person full of energy, grabbing the world with both hands and shaking it.
Despite this blog having the name Anxious Travelers, you’ve probably noticed that recently there has been a lot more said about travel than anxiety. There’s a reason for this. For me, anxiety isn’t an ever present thing. It comes and goes. One day it’s on my shoulders, dragging me down. Then it’s gone for a while, waiting for the next moment to pounce.
When we arrived in New Zealand eight months ago, I was in one of my positive periods. Nothing in life bothered me, I was happy – or happy enough. Things were going great. We’d arrived in this new beautiful place, we had healthy bank accounts and everybody spoke English. Hallelujah!
As time has gone on, things have started to take a downturn.
It was 3am when I woke up groaning. My stomach felt weird. Not painful, not bloated, just weird.
I got out of bed and headed straight to the bathroom. Soon enough my head was in the toilet, vomiting. Food poisoning. I didn’t know whether it was the shrimp I’d eaten on a boat trip or the three cheese pasta from that night. I guess I’ll never know. Continue reading Food Poisoning Before Flying→
This is part 2 in a series of posts about a trip to Amsterdam, part 1 can be found here.
Part 2: Losing Control
If you ever have a good idea and it includes taking drugs, then stop. Take a moment to think. It’s not a good idea.
Our “good idea” was so perfect that it didn’t warrant discussion. Wake up, eat breakfast. Early morning joint. Head to a smart shop. Buy some magic mushrooms. Go to a coffee shop, another joint. Have lunch, then back to the hotel to take the mushrooms.
I’m walking down the main street of Amsterdam when suddenly the drugs kick in.
I stop and laugh, my friend Chris stopping beside me. “The space cakes have just hit me!” I giggle with a thumbs up. He smiles back and we continue walking. After a few more steps my smile starts to waver as the feeling starts to sink in.
I pace quickly up the hill. My feet slamming into the mud of the trail.
My heart is racing, my body sweating. Legs ache, lungs burn. I can’t stop though. There’s something in the trees behind me. Something scary. Not a bear or a monster. Much worse than that.
Now you may think from my last post about socialising while travelling, that I’m a lover of conversation. The truth is, I hate it. I am a level 99 ninja at avoiding it. There’s a lot I’d go through to get out of a conversation. Including climbing a mountain.
As long as tall objects have existed, there have always been people stupid enough to go to the top of them.
Whether it be massive trees, huge pyramids, or gargantuan mountains, throughout history it seems one thing all humans share in common is a zest to reach high places.
My question is: why? Are we as a species completely fucking nuts? It’s built into all of us is an innate sense of curiosity when it comes to heights. In me, that curiosity also seems to lead to fear. It’s only rational though. Tall places mean falling, falling means death. Why I wonder do we constantly put ourselves into positions where falling is more probable? Where death is more likely.