A wanderer’s life is a one of perpetual transition. I find myself constantly shifting between lives – letting go, letting in, holding on. Some people I want to hold onto, but life’s forcing me to let go. Some stories lay open and unfinished – leaving me wondering if I’ll get to write another page someday. Other tales survive life’s hard tests of time and distance – the chapters still unfolding; a story without an end.
“Go on then Great Wanderer,” the voice whispers. “Jump.”
My first Saturn Return was a time of boundaries and blockages, of breakdowns and breakups, and of stagnation and strife. Like a harsh teacher from hell, Saturn came down on my 7th and 10th houses like a ton of bricks. Everything I had, knew and was came crashing down. There were so many days I felt like I was crawling through a dark lonely tunnel where there would be no light at the end of it all. But as I look back now – I realise that I spent those three and a half years building a foundation that’s solid, resilient and tough.
I open my eyes each morning and I just don’t want to go on anymore. Everything feels like an enormous effort. A voice inside me gently whispers, “Not much longer now. You can do this.” I haul my tired soul out of bed and stand under the hot shower. There is cleansing quality to the experience. I close my eyes and let the water wash over me. When I’m done, I crawl back into bed. Terrible. I know. I delay the moment when I must go out and face the world. I delay it till I can delay it no longer. I reluctantly make a cup of coffee and eat my breakfast. In truth, I have no appetite – but if I don’t eat, my body won’t function. I have a physically active job and I can’t afford to leave home on an empty stomach.
These days we no longer talk about our ancestors. We’ve disguised this topic under more modern semantics such as: ‘identity’ and ‘heritage’. But I think the concept is still the same. We talk about those that came before us so that we may better understand who we are today.
We must clean out the old, dated and worn out. If we don’t clear out the old, nothing new can come in. We must choose our priorities, and burn everything that does not serve us.
I’ve rolled down the car window. The Irish countryside welcomes me with open arms. The cool summer breeze is in my hair. Ed Sheeren’s Shape of You is blaring out of the speakers. I’m wearing a mini skirt and boots. I’m nodding off while the driver and the GPS do their thing… I’m reliving some long overdue born-to-be-wild-80s moment. All is well… I WISH.
I call her the Wanderer. She resides in every single one of us. She knows no fear for she has faith. She needs no possessions to feel safe. She enters the Wildwood with courage and curiosity. She loves life. She begins each day with a sense of adventure. She doesn’t need anyone to take the plunge with her – for this journey is hers and hers alone.
At over two metres tall – the bow is heavier and more imposing than I thought it would be. It isn’t the first time I’ve held a weapon in my hand, but there’s something about the kyudo experience that scares some primal part me. I’m wearing a three fingered glove on my right hand. The yugake is a glove with a hardened thumb and a pre-made groove that’s designed to pull the string.
I’m riding the Green Car. It’s unbelievable that this train is so empty. There’s legroom. Empty seats. Food on sale. A tray table to eat my bento. Would I truly be able to enjoy this if not for the slow and steady ascent I’ve had? I was Mr. 8 of Pentacles not so long ago, packed into commuter hell; sharing my midnight misery with the masses. I didn’t like it – but I accepted that it was part of my journey from the ground up.