Odyssey: a long and eventful or adventurous journey or experience
– Oxford Dictionary
And so it begins. The ancient Greeks spoke of a time when heroes walked the earth performing superhuman endeavors, fighting monsters and consorting with the gods. They made up stories of men and women – neither gods nor humans – who became the heroes of Greek mythology.
Odysseus, the hero of Homer’s epic poem Odyssey, tricked the Trojans into bringing a giant wooden horse inside the walls of Troy. His army defeated the enemy and ended the Trojan War. In the epic Greek poem Odysseus spent many years traveling home from the Trojan war encountering monsters, cannibals, drugs, alluring women and he even visited the afterlife.
I have twelve months off work and I have noticed among friends and colleagues a hint of expectation that like Odysseus I will set out an an epic adventure. Each year my annual leave has taken me on some new adventure around the world so surely a long break is the perfect opportunity for an extended trip. When I told people about my leave the immediate response has most commonly been where are you going? When I announced I was mainly staying home their faces often folded into confusion and disappointment. Who takes all that time off work to stay home right?
Yesterday was my last day of work for the year. I have decided to spend my time at home to focus on writing (try to finish that crime fiction novel I started two years ago) and my garden (finish all those half completed landscaping projects) – two of my passions. Other than a few short breaks this time will be an internal journey to learn new skills, flex and build my writing muscle and discover where my imagination can take me. That decision feels just right at this point in time. Building and launching this website and writing a weekly blog is also part of the plan. Follow me if you dare…
Image: Istanbul, Turkey