Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Odyssey

The other day I was looking through my old things from my first year of college when I stumbled upon my Greek Literature class notebook. I remember my professor was really boring so I all did was take constant notes of everything, but the reading material in class was so good. This has to do with traveling - bear with me here a little further. 

Now the thing is, I never really thought about being a traveler or a tourist. I mean sure, the word tourist definitely popped up whenever I went on vacation or talked about going abroad but I never really thought about it as an essential part of life. Journeys are rituals: public or private, internal or external, emotional or physical, psychological o fantastical...we ALL experience them one way or another. This whole train of thought came to me when I saw my class note's on the The Odyssey, by Homer. If you need a refresher, The Odyssey is about the aftermath of the Trojan War, and greek war hero Odysseus's journey home. It takes him ten whole years to get back. Imagine that! Ten years. Ten years of roughing it, traveling nasty waters, resisting the ever-seducing lotus flower and being stalked by Poseidon, the greek god of the sea. 
I strangely felt connected to this tale that may or may not have happened thousands of years ago. In all honestly, I believe the universe has so many possibilities that one cannot close their mind and say that anything is certain. But what is certain is how funny it was to realise the Odyssey I'm actually on: moving out of my home, going to college, living by myself and learning to adjust. I have a couple of years to finish my bacherlor's degree and hopefully law school after that...if that isn't an Odyssey in itself, then I don't know what is! 
I was thrust from basically being an easygoing teenager and living with my parents to having to assume a whole load of new responsibilites as a young adult. College has not been easy - I'm not speaking so much academically, but more the emotional toll it has taken on me. Sometimes I feel very much alone but I take refuge in books, like I did when I read The Odyssey. It makes me realize I am not the first or last person to go through a journey that is not easy, and that some people might have it even worse than I do. Anyhow, I never knew greek mythology would open my eyes about traveling. It's funny how it seems like everything is connected, eventually. 

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