Piece by Piece

by Ivona Bozik

What is it about that bubble we create when we get to an unknown place? The combination of the distance from the familiar and the newness of circumstances, conditions that make grow different aspects of ourselves. For some we knew they existed silently, some we ignored. During every trip, longer than a single weekend, something in me moves towards a certain direction, builds up another foundation in me, brick by brick, an understanding enriches its effects. Yet, I find it hard to pinpoint what exactly that means.

Something in me awakened early in my childhood in one of those semi-exotic settings when my family took off to a non-European destination. Maybe, it was just the first taste of wanderlust. The first time, though, I felt what I now call a bubble was in Paris, 10 years ago. A bubble of new environment, new people, new language you now have to communicate in, new food even, new bed, and a new taste of tap water, all of those things that made the factual number of kilometers, the physical distance from home, felt on a somatic as much as an emotional level.

And it wasn’t scary, it was comforting. It became my bubble I kept coming back to, every two years, until I decided to transform it into an everyday one. All because it allowed me to be a different me, a me I chose to be.

Of course, I didn’t change dramatically, overturned everything I had ever thought or done. It just enhanced a part I had neglected. What I’ve noticed since then (which might be a self-evident truth to some of you) is that each place connects you to a different part of who you are.

In Atacama, I felt a peace in me I couldn’t ever in Europe, a dimension of my soul and being I had never touched before, or at least too briefly; the South of France automatically turns up the joie-de-vivre part of me like crazy; and Portugal, oh Portugal always ensures me in my self-reliance, self-grounded-ness (and in that it always has such perfect timing…). Of course, these are just forced outlines, but you get the picture.

So, wandering anywhere lately seems to me like playing with puzzles. Not just we get to find and see another piece of this planet, we might often be able to put another piece into a picture of who we are, too. Some are bigger than others, sure, but none is irrelevant.

[Originally published on inthesoulsstreets.wordpress.com]

© Ivona Bozik

Ivona Bozik (she/her) is a curious Slovenian writer and content creator, living in France, passionate about literature, music, travel and social justice. Her texts were so far published in various Slovenian literary magazines, as well as on Feminine Collective, Hook Literary Magazine and trash to treasure lit.

You can find her on WordPress or Instagram.

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