Palate cleanser

Do you ever feel like your life needs a palate cleanser?

To me it happens often, maybe as often as once a month. The symptoms are always the same and easy to spot: I grow bored and restless, I’m annoyed and feel the constant need to do something, yet at the same time I don’t feel like doing anything at all and my feet itch for a long walk that would lead into an unforgettable adventure. Once a month I get this severe urge to just get up and leaveand be gone for a week, cut my hair, wear something crazy and change my life completely.

I used to think it was because I live in a fairly small capital where most of the time nothing happens, and everyone seems to know everyone else. People judge, people make their opinions based off of things that happened ages ago and you can’t set foot on the bus wearing something daring without some grandma from a village nearby, who’s running errands in the city, giving you the nastiest look of all times™. God forbid you made any bad decisions when you were young. In this city, they follow you around like ghosts from the past, haunting your every step – people just find it so hard to believe that others have changed, and on our streets prejudice is king.

It happens with every area of my life. The restlessness takes over and I feel the need to change, evolve, reinvent myself in every way, shape or form. I change the usual routes I take for my everyday errands; I book a hair appointment; I archive Instagram pictures. I sift through my closet and get rid of everything I never wear. I go on a day trip just to escape the city – all because routine kills me and too often, I fall into it and see no way out. Routine leaves a weird after-taste in my mouth and I need something to get rid of it.

I tell myself that all I need to do is just move out of this country to a place where no one knows my name and I’ll truly be able to be myself. I need to change my ways and get rid of all the things that weigh me down here and I’ll be okay.

I’m not alone in this – and that is both comforting and scary. My friends feel it too, the need to escape, to start over. It makes me wonder: with our world changing so fast, is reinventing ourselves becoming a norm and not just an indicator of growth? Why do we feel the need to start all over and erase the past while we’re at it and why is it so hard for us to simply accept it as part of who we are, grow from it and evolve regardless of what others think? Can we really blame it on the small city mentality and will getting out of here, somewhere foreign, do us any good? Or is this a virus bound to follow us wherever we go?

Or maybe there’s no philosophy behind it. Sometimes our lives just need a palate cleanser, as simple as washing our hands to get rid of the dirt. Sometimes it’s enough to just let go of negativity and move forward with a clearer mind and even that simple change induces many bigger ones in our lives to the point, where we start to feel like we’re beginning again – brighter and better.

Maja Podojsteršek

Graphic design: Ana Žnidaršič