Ana Raspini is a traveler, besides being an English teacher, and a writer.

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Brasileira, professora de Inglês, escritora, mas acima de tudo, viajante.
Lyrical Travel Journal

A personal, slightly lyrical, point of view on the places I have been to.

sexta-feira, 31 de julho de 2015

Post-Trip Depression - PTD

This always happens. I just can't help it.

Since 2007, when I had my first long trip, this always happens.

A few weeks after I come back from a trip the world stops making sense, small pleasures are not as indulgent anymore, and the bureaucracy of life goes from annoying to unbearable.

It took me a long time to get this feeling. I must have only recognized it the second or third time I felt it. So I started calling it Port-Trip Depression, or PTD for short.

I'll try to explain it to those of  you who have never felt it, or for those who have felt it but couldn't tell what it was all about. During the Port-Trip Depression phase, it all gets more difficult and less interesting. Small everyday bureaucracies such as waking up early, washing your hair, working, washing the dishes come surrounded by questions like "why?" or "what for?"...

But what makes me really sad is losing the right to self-indulgence. In a normal state of mind, of non-PTD, you work all week and by the end of it you allow yourself some wine or beer, some gourmet food, or some fried treat, or waking up late without remorse. And that self-indulgence is good for you, that's the outlet you needed to forget the week behind and face the week ahead of you.

However, in a PTD state of mind, those things do not give you pleasure anymore. The problem is that you realize the wine you're drinking is worse and more expensive than the ones you had in Portugal or in France; The beer you're having is worse and more expensive than the ones you had in Germany or in Belgium; The gourmet food you're having is worse and more expensive than the ones you had in Italy or in France; That fried delicacy is nothing compared to the ones you had in England, or in Uruguay, or in Holland...

Those are desperate weeks, because the life you're leading stops making sense and that makes you feel lost. The questions of "why?" or "what for?" start applying to everything in your life and not just to the bad things. And questioning every part of your life is quite painful.

Yet, the days go by and you learn to accept that you cannot be on vacation for the rest of your life and that the world will always be there to be explored. The depression becomes smaller and smaller alongside with the digestion of the trip. You chew, swallow and digest everything you learned with that trip and that makes you better, more mature and calmer.

Life bothers you like new shoes. Then you get used to it.


For the Portuguese version, go to Diario Lirico de Viagem

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