How did it come to this?
On my recent trip to the US many of my friends asked me why I haven't been writing. I have been writing, just not here so much. I have been doing some pieces for a travel website and I have also been working on a couple of independent projects which may or may not be ready for public viewing at some point. But the blog, I think, has fallen victim to a kind of feeling-at-home-sickness, a complete loss of the conviction that my experiences here are any longer remarkable, literally, either to myself or for others.
Looking back over some of the early entries, full of so much wonder and awe, I am aware of how truly sad this is and know deep down that this sense of leading a commonplace existence is probably very misguided regardless. Not because my life or any life lived outside of its familiar geography is special, but because I feel that all lives are uncommon unless extraordinary measures are taken to make them less so (an eventuality all too common in our cyber-driven world, cave-dwelling people living the better part of their lives inside a simulated universe although I have read and believe that it is possible, given complete enough submersion, to have an authentic emotional and psychological existence through an avatar of one sort or another, although this does not in any way make such an existence any less pathetic). Anyway, I guess I came to feel that these entries were a waste of time to produce let alone disseminate since I had recorded a goodly cross section of the amazing things one can experience as an expat living in Korea and what was left were the day to day matters of existence which I didn't particularly care to record and I felt nobody other than possibly my mother would care to read.
But there have been some remarkable activities of late on which I should, if only for sake of my own processing, make comment, one to which I have already alluded: that of my journey home for the Thanksgiving holiday. I think at one point I might have mentioned a section from the wonderful poem by T.S. Eliot entitled "Little Gidding" which goes "...And the end of all our travelling will be to return to the place we started and to know the place for the first time...", and so, with this adage in mind I ventured forth on my homeward trajectory with the highest of ideals and the loftiest of inward prose: not only would I witness the complete transformation of my home ground and all of its inhabitants, but wouldn’t they also necessarily and reciprocally witness an equally miraculous transformation in me? I must, after this much time away (an incredibly long 16 months), have become essentially a new person, barely recognizable.
And the things I discovered, about myself and others, were even more amazing than I had ever imagined and they will be the subject of my next post…in June. ;)
11 December 2009
How did it come to this?
Posted by Joe Carrier at 1:13 PM