by Andi Bañez
“I was everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Wherever I was, I thought of someplace else, living through old photos or daydreaming of new adventures.”
For as far back as I can remember, I have jumped at every opportunity to go somewhere – anywhere besides here, really. Whether it be to the busiest city in America or the most secluded island in the Pacific, I would just pack whatever I thought important at a particular moment, and hop from here to there.
I thought, “Maybe, I am born with a suitcase heart.”
I instinctively knew I need to fill it with handwritten postcards from Europe, colorful trinkets from Africa, and one-of-a-kind handicrafts from South America, and throw in vivid photos and journaled encounters of every corner of the world.
And now, at 26 years old, I find myself living on a little island, east of the Philippines. I left the city to call the vast ocean my backyard. It might sound like the ideal set-up, but the problem with living in the middle of the sea is that one can never wander too far. Maybe that is why I miss the energy of Manila. You see, the need to constantly go back and forth between a lively city and a calm beach makes me wish I could be in two places at once.
I was everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Wherever I was, I thought of someplace else, living through old photos or daydreaming of new adventures; always, always holding onto the past, and hoping for an even more exciting future.
From where I am sitting, I barely even notice the water so clear it reflects shades of aquamarine, pink and purple; powdery sand so fine they fill the gaps on my keyboard; and a sky so blue it perfectly backdrops the sun shining majestically throughout the afternoon.
So, this is where I pause and appreciate the here, the now, before my thoughts flee to someplace else. This is where I take a step back to not let my wandering heart travel too far.