Why oh why?

Peter (previous boat owner) sent me his favourite passage from Homer’s Odyssey. As he says, as appropriate now as it was in 750 B.C.

Why are you are preparing your ship’s sails Odysseus?

We have everything you need here. Why do you wish to leave?” asked the despot of the Lotus-eaters.

There is something more I need…” answered Odysseus (aka Ulysses).

What is it you seek?” queried the despot.

I do not know….” hesitated Odysseus staring at the Aegean archipelago

– “By sailing away, I hope to find it, or maybe – if the Gods of Olympus wish – It will find me”

(‘Odyssey’ by Homer – c. 750 BC)

Not sure how Peter knew that I needed to read that but Saxony and I have both been in process of informing our employers and business partners of our desire to set sail and take an extended leave, perhaps even a forever leave from current employment. I often ask myself: why can’t I just be satisfied with a more “standard” and “normal” life? This constant thirst for adventure and discovery takes a toll on one’s professional life, family ties and friendships. I left Montreal 11 years ago to travel and discover. I have not returned to my roots to settle down yet. Meanwhile, my family is getting older, my siblings are getting married and having children. Time is slipping away, time I fear I may one day regret I didn’t take advantage of. And all of this to satisfy a thirst for adventure and discovery? It’s a steep price to pay and I honestly do struggle with this one and have yet to find peace within myself on the subject.

Ulysses Deriding Polyphemus Homer's Odyssey

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2 Responses
  1. Christine

    Take your adventures but also make that effort to grow the roots within you. I have stopped letting birthdays and holidays slip past me… when I saw that I had grown into the spot I remember my father being in just yesterday. While I was off adventuring, I got older, and so did everyone else. Now I see that today’s 40 will be tomorrow’s 60 and I am resolved to both adventure and have those roots. I’ll let you know tomorrow if that works out 😉

  2. Peter A. Green

    Shatter your life mold and loose the bands of constraint;
    Find spontaneity and let life’s spark, light your existence.
    However sip carefully on freedom, you may not want it;
    Freedom makes demands and the price is high,
    Though, anything with worth has its price.

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