When I returned, I thought I would be eager to see people. When I returned, I thought I would want to be out doing things. When I returned, I thought I would need to buy a lot more.
Instead, I am a hermit. I spend my day in my little apartment sleeping, puttering, making lists, and soaking in malaise. I venture outside infrequently like a mole leaving his hole: I scurry to my destination, pick up what I need, and scurry back home again.
So much solitary driving and camping have habituated me to solitude. I recently pilgrimaged to the king of hermitages, Thoreau’s cabin at Walden Pond. Perhaps I just need time in San Francisco to reintegrate. I have spent the week unpacking the car.
Before my trip, I regularly visited the consignment shop on the corner. Every Friday, I hunted for clothing bargains. I no longer have the urge to return to the store. I want less, not more. Can I leave things instead of bringing home a bundle?
I worry about money. I calculate how much I can save. I eat all my meals at home. I have not bought a drink in…three days.
My energy was quite different when I was working. Since the workweek took at least fifty hours of my time, I coveted the remaining precious hours. In my free time, I ran frantically around the city. I went out on Friday and Saturday nights because I had to. Remove that work pressure and I want to stay home.
I continue to struggle with that question. Like the sun returning after spring rains, I will eventually want to be outside. In the meantime, I catalog my belongings and lie sullenly home.