Standing Still


Almost two weeks into my journey, I feel like I have finally arrived. After getting lost in work and worries and half-plans and daydreams, I am slowly regaining balance. Next Friday, I will submit my first novel translation to the publisher. Things are starting to calm down.

It was odd, leaving Sweden with nothing but my everyday backpack. Most of the few things I am bringing are tools for creating. My laptop. My camera. My notebook. My microphone. It feels symbolical, somehow, as though my packing choices mark my focus for the coming four months, giving more weight to creativity.

I am renting a room in Chiang Mai for the first half of my trip. Some days I wish I had left more room for detours, but I am in the middle of projects that require focus and stability, and since I am not getting paid until they are finished, I simply have no means for spontaneous travelling right now.

Instead, I am practicing finding peace where I am. Working in a shady café backyard. Mapping the streets around my temporary home. Catching the mist by the lake nearby. Running through a waking university campus. Sketching children’s book scenes at my mountain-view window. I remind myself that I am here. I am finally here, and for now, that is enough of an adventure.

This morning, I walked through the forest to the little temple halfway up the mountain. At one point, when thoughts and worries started to catch up, I stopped on the path for a few minutes to let them pass. That was the first time I noticed all the sounds. The forest that had seemed so dry and dormant suddenly came alive. And so did I.

Sometimes all it takes is standing still.

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