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Jetlag and taking inventory of what I need to change in my travel lifestyle to bring me joy

Today is my fourth day in Israel.

By sara burdickPublished 4 months ago 3 min read
Tel Aviv

As I get ready to take the train, I realize how absolutely drained I am. The first day I felt great and surprised that I had no jetlag.

It took a couple of days for my body to realize what was happening. My computer time has yet to switch to my new time, which now reads 3:24 am. Yet it is 11:24 am where I am.

My body’s internal clock is still set to 3:24 am, and I want to return to bed. Yet I have checked out of my accommodation and am dragging my feet to walk to the bus station to catch the train to Jerusalem.

I walked downstairs to get a coffee and realized I was unsure I wanted one. So here I am sitting, writing. My eyeballs are a bit blurry.

I am ready to leave the city. Yesterday I wrote about being in the city, some may think it was a bit harsh, and if I were here longer, maybe I would change my mind. The reality for me is I’m not too fond of most cities.

It has nothing to do with the city. I have been to so many in my life, and I like one, Buenos Aires. I’m not too fond of cities in Colombia, either. I can stay a couple of days, and then I am ready to leave.

It is my personal preference. I have booked a volunteer gig starting end of this month on a farm in the north of Israel. Today as I was thinking about my life, I realized the best times I have had are when I am productive.

When I am knee-deep in the dirt, surrounded by people of similar mindsets, and somewhere that is not on the traditional backpacker/tourist route.

During the two months I spent in northern Patagonia; I worked my butt off; best experience ever. The month I spent working on an elephant sanctuary. I spent the month working at a summer ski resort, helping prepare for winter. All of these places were out of the way, and I worked, and I felt useful and surrounded by others who felt the same.

Being in a hostel full of people looking to see the next sight has never been my travel style. It is like putting a square peg in a star-shaped hole; it never fits. That has been part of my frustrations of being here, walking around looking at things, not understanding why or how.

Then I heard a guy talking on the phone to his family, and he was discussing his time in Israel. He is a volunteer and told his family how fascinating the history and culture are; instantly, I knew I was just on the wrong side.

Plus, I traveled and saw sights in Colombia before I left, so I have been a tourist for too long. Of course, I will always be a tourist, but I need to return to how I want to travel, not finding the next hot coffee shop or beach to see.

However, I am very excited to be a tourist in Jerusalem for a couple of weeks. I will do some walking tours and food tours and talk to some locals about the city’s history.

There is a reason I stay in countries for a long time, the immediate shock is usually what am I doing here, and then I typically find my way. It takes time, I can only adapt slowly, and it takes me looking inward and figuring out what needs aligning.

This is why I like writing; it brings it all to the surface faster. Yet it is all about looking and reflecting, and we are only here to live and have an experience, yet sometimes I forget.



middle east

About the Creator

sara burdick

I quit the rat race after working as a nurse for 16 years. I now write online and live abroad, currently Nomading, as I search for my forever home. Personal Stories, Travel and History

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