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Tea, Cats, and Books

A book is best read with tea in your hand and a cat on your lap. 

24-year-old English Major that currently works in an indie bookshop and at a local publishing house. Reviews and other bookish things. 

Have an existential crisis then go travel

No Baggage: A Minimalist Tale of Love and Wandering - Clara Bensen

This book mirrored my own life in an inverted sort of way. The author, Clara Bensen, tells the tale of how, after recently putting her life back together, she meets an energetic, spontaneous, carefree guy online and they go off together on an adventure across Europe with no baggage. An endeavor that is both thrilling and terrifying to think about, if you ask me. 


I have just recently moved to an entirely new country and as I near unemployment again and have no real direction in my life, I feel a bit like I'm taking Clara's journey in reverse, only no where near as extreme. Anyway, back to Clara's story. 


This is definitely a book for travelers and anyone that has ever felt the keen sting of life's overarching uncertainty. Clara describes, in detail, just how far down the rabbit hole she fell, how she was wholly crushed by this uncertainty of what life is all about. And all this helped get her to the point where agreeing to travel across Europe with a guy she met a month ago online didn't seem like such a big deal. 


The whole time I was reading this book I was trying to decide if traveling through several different countries over the course of a few weeks with little to no possessions and no set plans would be something I'd like to try some day. Everyone travels differently and they travel for different reasons and with certain expectations. I don't know if I would come away from a trip like Clara's feeling fulfilled. But it might be something worth doing once just for the experience. 


I think Clara did a very good job of making her two year tumble down a dark and hopeless tunnel of the unknown very relatable to anyone who has asked the question, "What do I do with my life?" This book certainly wasn't trying to be a commentary on the way our country responds to mental illness but it does shed some light. Clara, at one point, talks about how she was afraid to give the real reason why she had gone off the deep end, when I think her reasons are perfectly valid and something many people experience to some degree or another. 


I would definitely recommend this to any ambitious travelers or anyone who has every felt lost in life.