Travel as Metaphor

The blog of novelist Sue Swift.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

17 March: today would have been Lizzy’s birthday had she not killed herself in 2005. It’s also her brother Eliot’s birthday, so I phoned him. He seems well and is still struggling with the same issues that occupied him before I left for Thailand six months ago—whether he should continue to grow richer giving colonoscopies to rich people or figure out something more meaningful to do with his life. Maybe he needs to take Eric Maisel’s course in meaning-making. Anyhow, he appreciated that I remembered Liz’s birthday and phoning.

With the conference over, I spent the remainder of my time in San Diego hanging out with Wendy and the boys. They seem OK…strangely enough it doesn’t seem weird to stay in the same room where Keith died. Wendy claims that she and Keith talk often. When she mentions this I quickly change the subject.

Keith's stonesetting is on May 3, the first anniversary of his death.

I also explore San Diego…with a job offer pending, it seems wise, though the SD lifestyle is not one I crave. I know what I want, and it doesn’t exist in California. Portland, with its milder summer weather, excellent public transport and less expensive costs seems to fill the bill. And if it doesn’t work out, I’ll go someplace else. The world is big and fascinating and full of people who might become my friends.

Back in Sacramento, it seems more than ever that I have gone backwards. Though it’s nice to see people from my past, I’m eager to get on with it. The six-month sojourn overseas is possibly the best move I ever made in my life, which has been full of wrong turnings and regrets. I now understand what makes me happy…getting away from the expectations and needs of family and spouse enabled me to experience myself more directly, to experiment with location and lifestyle.

The writing is back (yay!) and if I quit being in vacation mode, I have books to write, revise and sell.

So it’s all good.


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