Elizabeth Gilbert. You crafty little bitch you. Somehow you managed to write one of the most polarizing books of all time. To some, you’re a woman who found herself and learned to live. To others you’re a self-centered asshole who just thought you were better and worth more than everyone else….. to be honest, both are true.
You were an author living in New York City dating hot younger men (Not exactly the poster child for oppressed womanhood). However, you were miserable. And if you’re miserable you should always change. Otherwise…..well…you’ll just always be miserable.
However, Im going to focus on the positives. You did take control of your life. You did inspire a shit ton of people to do the same. And furthermore (and if all else isn’t true) you wrote a story that made people smile and remember that change is always possible.
I won’t recap the story or anything because I’m sure you’ve all seen it (and if you haven’t I won’t give any spoilers cuz thats bullshit).
Long story short: She’s miserable and decides to travel to Italy (Eat), India (Pray) and Bali, Indonesia (Love) to find herself. She meets some great people, finds herself, and theres a sex scene involving a pizza….
I have decided Im going to take a trip….and write about it of course! Inspired by Eat, Pray, Love but changing it a little to cater to what I need in life.
My story? Well, I’m a 26 yr old American guy living in New Zealand. Ive been moving around since I was 18 trying to find where i fit in. Working dead-end jobs, suffering from depression, anxiety, and panic disorder. Ive never had stable friendships. Ive never been on a date or been in love. I live my life alone. Wandering endlessly around never feeling close to anyone. Everyone my age just wants to fuck; Either get fucked on drugs and alcohol, or get fucked by someone else. Fitting in is hard. And so, I’m done. Im no longer trying to fit in. I now want to do what I love, which is write. I want to inspire people. Especially those who suffer from mental illness, those who have been bullied, and anyone else who just feels like they don’t belong. Along the way I want to meet people who are more like me. Who think outside the box. Make friends, have adventures, and find love. (I think Eliabeth Gilbert would approve)
So where am I going?
Ive always wanted to go to Bali. The beauty, the water, the palms, the sun, and the heat. A colorful little Hindu island refuge stuck inside of an oppressive Muslim country.
In Bali I hope to relax and learn. Learn about a culture completely different than anything Ive experienced. See the good. See the bad. Just see the world as an outsider. With no knowledge of what expect. Just see it with clarity.
Then its off to:
A hustling, bustling metropolis in Asia. This city will push my health anxiety and agoraphobia to the absolute limits. My goal: Live it like a local. Go with the flow. Sit in the traffic, rush through the malls, eat the street food, hop on the train, and let go. I can’t keep letting myself deteriorate any longer. its time to jump in the deep end see if I can swim. (I have faith that I will)
To reward myself for surviving that city I will head to:
The Cameron Highlands
This will be my version of “EAT” from her book. I am an avid lover of food and tea. I love cooking. I love going to restaurants. I love trying new food, and savoring every bite! The Cameron highlands are a renowned area for tea and strawberry growing high in the hills of Malaysia. I am going to go and Im going to go and eat and drink. The end. This portion is my selfish all about me portion of the trip. Make some friends, and drink tea till I’m peeing myself to death.
Then its off to see the real Malaysia. Ill be going to:
A small riverside community that has is a strange mix of everything. There is some tourism, some poverty, some wealth, some transportation industry through the river, some beauty, some religion, some ugliness, but apparently uniquely beautiful.
In Malacca I hope to learn to accept life for what it is. Good, bad, pretty, ugly, but real. I want to gain appreciation for what I do have. I want to accept the things I can’t change, and embrace the things I can. I want to find myself.
I will finish the trip in:
Singapore is where I will need to use everything I’ve learned throughout the trip. Singapore is one of the safest and smallest countries in the entire world. It has beautiful buildings, stunning public spaces (like the super trees below), and is filled with a wonderful collection of people and cultures.
But beneath the surface are the realities of why its so safe. Harsh Muslim laws mixed with old-world colonial laws make Singapore a place you don’t want to get into trouble in. Public beatings, mandatory death penalties, illegal homosexuality, and massive fines are some of the things a Singapore Airlines billboard will never tell you, but are very much part of the country.
Singapore will be my real-world application to everything I hope to learn on the rest of the trip.
Wish me luck?
~ The dark Horse