The wanderer is a condition that is beyond time, culture and place. It can be found anywhere… The wanderer is possessed by a frenzy for travelling, a constant instability that floods his spirit to always be going and coming, even if just to be a few meters away from home. It is a beautiful disease (or sanity) that also characterises our contemporary era in more ways than we can initially understand. The wanderer always seeks new emotions and always finds comfort when he is away from home, experiencing something new. The ambiguity and complexity of the wanderer is that he also finds equal comfort in arriving home and in being at home… just as long as it is not for too long. His spirit is always flooded with this constant desire to do, to be, to explore, to speak, to know, to choose, to conquer, to get lost, to see, to explore, to chase, and to simply feel ALIVE. The wanderer is a seeker, a chaser of thrills… If he can be qualified by one thing only, it is this: his insatiable desire to FEEL and EXPERIENCE. Possessed by feeling, he thrives in the discovery of the new and in understanding the unknown.
Does this wandering condition come from technology making our world smaller? Does it come from our new ability to travel? Does it emerge as restlessness defined by our consumption culture? I don’t think so…. In fact, nobody can claim that to be true because it simply is not. To believe so would be to have a superficial viewpoint of the phenomenon. It is much more complex. The wanderer is much deeper than that…
Some of the great wanderers have left their stories for us to know are: Jack Kerouac, who wrote constantly, as we all know, about his travels and his wandering spirit; In the Renaissance, education wasn’t ever considered to be complete unless it was followed by at least four years of travelling all over Europe; they called it the Grand Tour; Siddartha is another example, and so many others that my mind simply can’t think of at this moment (more examples are more than welcomed from you reader). We can go even further and say that all great artists are wanderers at heart: they create from that wandering spirit, from those restless emotions, and from those unbelievable feelings they grow from a process of discovery of the great unknown.
When we observe it close enough, we find this wandering spirit in all of us. It defines us… it defines our love for life and for existence, and gives wings to our soul. There are so many more things that can be said about the wanderer… but for now… let’s just consider it a magical way of existence. So here is to the wanderer in all of us… may we always be filled with a fantastic Wanderlust.
(the photo above was taken in Ubud, Bali, last week)