Not all those who wander are lost. — J.R.R. Tolkien
This quote has probably been overused and abused to the point where, if you mention it, people would just go to the next article without bothering to read yours.
If you’re still reading this I believe you have wandered off yourself a few times, or you would want to do so at least. Bilbo Baggins didn’t exactly wander off to Erebor, nobody in their right mind would do such a thing. Neither did Frodo embark on a journey to throw the ring into Mordor, on his own accord. They were both nudged into the quests by Gandalf. The problem is that in our lives, there might be no real Gandalf.
We just have a tiny voice at the back of our head that keeps asking “What if?”. Most of the time it’s treated with suspicion, and in it’s own right that is correct, as far as self preservation is concerned. After all there were hordes of Orcs standing between the heroes (read puny hobbits) and their goals.
But despite the fact that the quests were mortally dangerous, they turned out to be the most rewarding experiences of the heroes’ lives.
Our lives are quite like the hobbits’. We have nice little holes that we live in, comfortable and squeaky clean. But what is this itch that makes us stand up from our Ikea couches, turn the door knob, and venture forth into the unknown? Here’s another quote that sheds light on it…
We invest far-off places with a certain romance. This appeal, I suspect, has been meticulously crafted by natural selection as an essential element in our survival. — Carl Sagan
This could be true as for survival we have always depended upon our ability to find new places to inhabit.
So this time I wandered further north into the mountains, there were fewer people, more quiet and a lot more time for myself. I wasn’t lost though, and I found my way back, but as long as I wandered, I felt at home.