I guess it’s Easter Sunday back home, soon. I’m living in another world now and have forgotten all but very little it seems. I live a very basic existence consisting mainly of eating, drinking coffee, sweating, sweating profusely, sweating through my shirt, looking for cafes to escape from the heat and the constant sweating, photographing, and trying to stay atop trades in crypto and analyzing forex charts. I feel lost much of the time here. I think largely because I am so far from busier parts of the city where there is more to do. A large part of my day is spent just moving from spot to spot. Much too much time, and so I feel like I’m not gaining enough from my time here, and thus I am disillusioned with the city. The suffocating heat isn’t helping. Haven’t yet decided if I move to a new hostel for a few days after my time at Kamin Bird House is up, or if I just pack up and move south. I would, I think, prefer to give Bangkok a bit more of a chance. It’s too easy to be disappointed by something after a couple of days of dissatisfaction, develop too quickly a poor opinion of the place, and then throw in the towel on it. Making hasty decisions is one of the worst things one can do for himself in developing an opinion on something. Give it time, and realize that it’s not going to change for you, and if you expect it to you’re only going to continue to be disillusioned, disappointed, and frustrated.
Pretty certain I’m lonely. Is this good or bad? What can I learn from it? I’m in love with being alive, but I feel less than alive right now. I feel beat down and uncertain. Why am I here in Bangkok? What am I doing? Truly and frankly I’m not doing anything. What am I supposed to do? I don’t even know that. I could be having a good time with a friend or certain other person. but again, and I’ve covered this ground before, I’m not traveling and I’m not accomplishing anything either. I’m unhappy with my photography and so I’ve lost the desire to shoot, and I’m sick of spending more time traveling to areas I want to visit and photograph than actually spending time in those places I’m visiting. I’ve had certain periods of brightness and they make this all worth it (it’s amazing the crap that a photographer will put up with for a single, satisfying image), but I’m stagnating right now. Can this be a good thing? I think yes. I KNOW yes, and I know yes simply because I’m honest and conscious enough to ask that question.
The swamp of my soul… this phrase has been flipping over in my mind for the past few minutes, I suppose because I am writing of stagnation. The world equates a swamp with negativity, with filth, stink, rot. Yet swamps are beautiful. They’re teeming with life, no less so, and often more so, than other ecosystems. So why the negativity? Many people talk, and have talked for centuries, of draining them and filling them in (and many people have done so; several of America’s large cities rest on what was once swampland). Very few say “this swamp is beautiful, a masterpiece of evolution.” A swamp is life disguised as death (a rather poor disguise in my opinion, but it has obviously fooled a great many people), which is a tremendous trick—many animals “play dead” as a way to fool predators. Unfortunately, in this case the predator is man who plays the role of scavenger and so has at it at the swamp anyway, destroying it completely. Humankind has no respect for the swamp. It doesn’t shine. It doesn’t glow. It doesn’t maintain a dry and comfortable temperature of 20-25 degrees celsius. It is often much hotter, with a humidity to match. It is impossible, or near so, to build on. In short it is inconvenient, and provides nothing of “value”, therefore it must be destroyed.
So, is my soul a swamp? Do I find it disgusting, repulsive? I think perhaps right now comparing my soul to a swamp is doing the swamp a disservice. I think a swamp right now is much fuller of life and beauty than my soul currently is. My soul though, right now, is waiting. It is a fertile field with the attendant nutrients and minerals needed for it to support life. It is merely waiting for a seed, hundreds of them, thousands, tens of hundreds of thousands; and a bit of rain (something else people like to complain about) before it may begin to blossom and proliferate with plant life, and become a habitat for other living beings, creatures small and large, fragile and delicate, beautiful and winged; and then it will bear fruit which it may then provide to others that they may do the same in turn, that we all may live more productively, fruitfully, satisfyingly, gratefully. But until then it is waiting with no less than a touch of stoicism, but not without a certain turmoil either.