Rotorua, Aotearoa New Zealand
April 18, 2021


I'm currently sitting in an airport lounge, taking advantage of the last of my partner's pre-covid flight mile status, surrounded by a hundred or so folks who I'm certain did not sleep in a van last night.

I think about how close I've been to all aspects of my human, animal nature in the van. Eating and excretion. Counting drops of water as they fall out of the van's tank. Being ok sleeping basically anywhere, no matter what's happening around me. Every from and to never more than five meters away.

Here, they have sparkling water on tap and a bottle of champagne always open. There's a food buffet. Cookies and muffins and pasta and roasted potatoes. Whatever you want, however you want it, is free, as much as you'd like to take. I empathize with my past self, who struggled with overeating in a house, let alone a buffet. Food and sugar were never meant to be this easy to get, and we're all suffering as a result.

The birds, trees, shifting clouds, and endless ribbon of road out my windows have been replaced by a dozen TV screens. Rugby. Documentaries. News coverage. Departure times. Through the panes of glass, planes taxi by, taking those of us in such a hurry to get from here to there that we'll pile into an improbable slingshot of a metal cylinder, filled with fire, fuel, and us.

I can see a few faraway sheep, grazing at the edge of the airport land. I wonder what they think of all of this.

I wonder what I do.

I'm on the plane to go meet my partner for a birthday celebration and support her first triathlon. Staying behind is Horace the van, spending the weekend with some kind hands who will try to figure out where all his oil is going.

Walking away from him this morning was gutting. Wrapped up in four meters of metal is a home and a sense of grounded. So much of what I care about stayed behind me in the van. Heart. Adventure. Authenticity. Home.

"Excuse me," a woman comes by, gloved and uniformed, to take the empty glass in front of me.

And I'm back here. This whole scene with the comfortable couches and designer lamps. With a hundred humans staring at spreadsheets and talking business on their phones, making faces that look like it's giving them migraines. No doubt - it's surely what keeps the engine of the modern world going.

But stepping out of a van and into this, for all of its comfort and elegance - I can tell you: it's not for me. And when I look back at my life, at all the shapes and suits I've tried on over the years - it never was.

Have an honest week,


p.s. The best thing I saw this week was this explanation of why cats love catnip so much. Turns out, mosquitoes? Who knew?

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