Thomas (AMSTERDAM, NL)
No, I am not burnt out… I was just fed up with looking like my father when I thought he really started to look old, having two kids who constantly complain about what I think is good for them, administering the household with or against my overworked wife and running after my dog to scratch his shit off the streets… so I took some time off to visit my friend Irene Herbers in Ibiza. She moved there a couple of months ago to start up a business as coach and travel guide for people with a burn out… (but I am not!)
Irene picked me up at the airport and immediately declared me to become a test case for her new business.
For me that meant not to worry about anything, let her make the decisions and instead of trying to continue my role as alpha leader to simply give in and follow. The only thing I really was asked to do was to open up to what Irene calls the power places of the Island… starting out with a cafe con leche at a terras under the Ibizian morning sun - very powerful…
It is amazing what the mediterranean climate does to a somewhat grey and tightened Dutch winter body. I literally felt my limbs to soften and ease up as if to increase its surface to assimilate more of the Spanish warmth.
And then off we took…
Irene as chauffeur and DJ, with a fully set out plan of which places to visit, picknick and swimming trunks in petto, miraculously navigating the maze of streets, driving from less interesting airport sceneries and along typical road side commerces towards the Ibizian countryside. An almost silent road movie with a carefully plotted drama and some real life cliff-hangers.
I dropped my preconceptions about what I thought is a dubious jet-set island, allowed myself to immers with the unknown and became a witness of how nature plays its tricks on human exploitation. Main feature: an ever changing edge between land and sea, a jagged line of shifting atmospheres and characters. Sometimes the line is gentle but mostly it carries a raw and pure ambience. And once there, your personal time frame is being replaced by a different and kind of eternal rhythm of something greater. Something that defies civilisation and follows its own natural rules.
My guide did choose the right spots and the weather gods were friendly.
We walked towards and along this line, sat, ate and looked, took a dive in the sea, dried in the sun, exchanged thoughts, laughed, walked again. Took a break and drove back for some different soul food in the more civilised world. Wine and warm meals. Then embracing the change of light from bright to dark, the change of temperature from hot to really chilly, the change of land from sparkling earthy colours to muddy greens and greys until night and mist took over. That is all we did and that is all we needed in those 4 days - yes, of course, some sleep in between.
I thought I changed during those days. My daily troubles felt far away - but also quite insignificant. I took up a different energy… like through a filter I could think about my home life as something that gets too easily dominated by the wrong priorities. I could long again for what I was fed up with before. As if universal laws teach you to cut the crap and help you to find the right intuition again. And this is what I took home… to feel my love again…
Not only love for my dearest but also love for my friend and guide.
Thank you Irene. Thank you for being who and how you are. For being selfless and committed, for showing me these wonderful places, for feeding me with images that will stay for a long time and help me to put things in a different perspective. The only problem for now, actually, is that I kind of like the idea of getting burnt out… just to have a good reason to come back.