J. Martin

August 28, 2022

Vacation Diary | Wrap-Up

Spending one’s summer vacation at home isn’t the same as going on vacation. At home, you’re not confronted with unfamiliar surroundings, new and different people, or novel activities, and that’s the problem—your overall time-out counts a lot less without a mental time-out from all the things you pursue and think about on a daily basis. People talk about “unplugging” or similar metaphors, but that’s exactly what you cannot do. If your brain isn’t occupied with processing new experiences, it will happily keep processing old ones. Your brain cannot “relax.” There’s no such thing as not thinking. As I haven’t occupied my brain with radically new experiences since August 2019—since then all I did was meeting my dad in Berlin for a few days last year and staying with friends in and around Stuttgart over New Year—and merely abstained from doing the same things I always do, I still feel kind of mentally exhausted. In retrospect, I should have picked up an activity, any activity, I never did before. Living on the balcony, reading a lot purely for my enjoyment, and improving things around the apartment, all that felt good, no doubt. But reading purely for enjoyment and improving things around the apartment should be part of my regular life, not a summer staycation exclusive.

Anyways, I kept reading, mostly advancing with what I’ve been reading the weeks before. What I didn’t do a lot, though, was playing. Instead, I worked my way through Tim Rogers’s post-Kotaku Action Button reviews, which clock in at around three hours each—except Cyberpunk 2077, which is a mere hour, and Tokimeki Memorial, which holds you spell-bound for five hours, fifty-six minutes, and twenty-six seconds. Twice. At least. Besides all that, I put a new album on Flickr with 45 shots from a brutally hot summer’s day’s hike along the Great Wall at Jinshanling, China, and two re-edited shots on Glass from Tōkyō, Japan, one from a subterranean Ana Inari Shrine in Ueno and one night street shot at Ikebukuro Station. And, as usual, there’s one post each at my Instagram accounts betweendrafts and voidpunkverse.

Blogging will resume soon. In the meantime, please enjoy this cuddly bunny!