I love my wife unconditionally. She gives me a happiness and contentment I never truly experienced until I met her. A smile from her brings brightness to any day. Johnny Cash could just as well have been signing about me in the lines:
I find it very, very easy to be true
Yes, I’ll admit that I’m a fool for you
Because you’re mine, I walk the line
The same is not true of my love of places, cities and countries. I tell each new one that I love them the best and they are better than the rest. Each time I have whispered my undying love into the ear of a new place, I really meant it. I truly love Amsterdam, Bangkok, Chicago, Dubai, Edinburgh, Faucon, Germany, Ireland, and so many more. Last month, I was in Honolulu and you know what I told her.
Mental health experts might see my inability to commit to a single city, place or region as a psychological problem. They would probably diagnose me with something like a neurotic personality characterized by an underlying character structure that leads to emotional and psychological detachment manifested in the inability to make commitments. I would call it wanderlust. If some of our ancestors had not suffered from it then we would still be in a small number of isolated river valleys never knowing what wonders were just over the horizon.
In the morning, Alla, my true love, and I are headed to Honolulu, my current fling, to visit our younger daughter. I am excited to show Alla the city as well as to exploring new locations with her. I am taking a bicycle to ride while I am there and to leave for future trips. We plan to take several trips back over the next three years while our daughter completes her residency.
Alla is excited because this is her first trip to Hawaii and she has not seen our daughter in some months. Honolulu is a great city and Oahu is a beautiful island with iconic beaches, historic sites, great hiking, and more. This could be true love. I could see myself living in Honolulu, walking in Chinatown, visiting the local markets for fresh fruit and vegetables, and watching the sunset from Magic Island. I can imagine us growing old together in Honolulu, eating lunches of lau lau, kalua pork, lomi lomi salmon, poi, haupia, and rice, and then taking a nap under the palm trees while the trade winds caress us.
The truth is that the only possible cure for my type of ailment is more travel. I am sure that after our February visit to Washington, DC, the March art trip with Alla’s students, a summer vacation with our older daughter and her family in New York, a mid-summer trip to Virginia, a Fall bicycle tour in Thailand, and a return visit to Honolulu for Christmas, I will be on the road to recovery and not have a desire to travel until at least 2017.