As my first working term in Australia draws to a close, I find myself in multiple minds about how best to continue. I am now a well practised salad chopper – I have literally chopped and prepared salads for thousands of people over the past four months – and for the most part, chopping salads, making pestos, creating sauces and such like, has been quite OK. It’s not a vocation I would like for an extended period of time, but it worked for a little bit – I like the people around me and now I am done with it.
I often think of how much I miss the road, but then I realise that it isn’t the road that I miss. It is the way of life that I miss, the waking up in the morning and being excited for what the day entails. With the exception of precious few days in Australia, I haven’t found that for a little while.
After not having a normal job for around three years, it has been a dramatic change to come and do something I am not passionate about for so long. 70+ hour weeks were normal when I got here. What I realise though, is that it is not my job that is the enemy here, it is my way of life. I wake up in the morning, work for multiple hours, get a break to eat, walk on the beach, or send a few emails, then I go and work again. By the end of my next shift, it is around nine at night. I have a drink with my friends, then go all over again the next day. It’s a never ending cycle that doesn’t allow me to focus on things in life that really matter – it feels that my freedom has been taken away from me as I no longer have a choice about what I do. In terms of work, it’s far more financially lucrative to chop vegetables than it is to do writing and other such pursuits that I have undertaken in the past few years. But it is the creative pursuits that I enjoy. So what if I work for 1,000 hours and make 1,000 dollars if I enjoy what I am doing? I know how to survive without money and I will be happy. I make far more money chopping vegetables, but it is not the life I desire. So I make a change – in two weeks, I do something different.
My goal is to build a life I don’t need a vacation from.
That is a life where I will work hard and push myself, but I will be passionate about what I do. Maybe we should all try to do the same. Because right now, I need a break from what I’m doing.
The featured image on this post was taken in the early hours of the morning on the coast of Japan. I part-cycled there from South Korea, when I was living on Jeju island. It was a beautiful ride and I was smiling.