The Escapist Fantasy

We all have an escapist fantasy. Our wish to get away, to soothe our soul, to just for once think only of ourselves on those days when the rest of the world has forgotten to recognize and appreciate our personal greatness. It may be a day when months of work towards a particular goal are kicked aside by a higher up, who on a whim decides to take things in a new direction. It could be a day when everything seems to be coming up roses and then you get home to find a cold, cruel message informing you that your husband, wife, significant other has decided they need space or have found someone else. Or perhaps you’ve had that stressful day at work, it’s finally the end of a Friday and you’re looking forward to returning to your oasis at home and being embraced by the love of your family only to be greeted by screaming, yelling, and arguing. Life is sometimes imperfect and sometimes we all accept the invitation to the personal pity party and think to ourselves, “What if I just dropped it all and walked away?” Here’s how my escapist fantasy goes:

It’s been one of those days, weeks or even a month when the world has forgotten their obligation to fall fawning at my feet. I’ve had it. Fortunately for me there are two things happening that will allow me to finally just take care of myself, to have no demands on me more complicated than what to have for lunch. I just had my quarterly bonus from work direct deposited in conjunction with my regular paycheck. I have more money at my disposal at this moment than I’ve ever had. Tomorrow I have to travel to somewhere perpetually warm and sunny for a work function. I close out the bank account. It may not be a fortune, but it’s more money than I’ve ever seen in my hands. This should take care of me for a couple months if I’m smart about it.

I get on the plane as scheduled and step off far away from my stress. I still stay in the hotel provided by work and attend all my meetings for the week. Why not? The hotel and my meals are paid for. Then comes Friday. The week of work meetings is done. Now it’s time. I pack my suitcase and tell my roommate I’ll see him down at breakfast. After breakfast I gather my suitcase, all the clothes I may own for a while, and instead of boarding the shuttle to the airport I walk past without a word or look in anyone’s direction, and I keep walking until my feet find sand and my ears are filled with the sound of waves crashing upon the shore. I set my suitcase and my ass down upon the sun kissed beach. I slip off my black dress shoes and socks, setting aside the symbol of the life I’ve just left behind. “Even my toes wanted freedom from their workaday bondage,” I think to myself as I dig my feet into the warm sand. I imagine that I can find a room to stay in above a beachside restaurant where I will work as a bartender pouring drinks and dispensing wisdom in exchange for my room and food. No paycheck, no social security number needed. Aside from that my time is spent enjoying the story of each person I meet as I soak in the sun, the sound of the waves and caw of the seagulls forever my soundtrack.

So what’s your escapist fantasy? Where do you daydream of when it feels like the world is playing kick the can with your life?

P.S. If I don’t post again for a while, you’ll know why. “Wastin’ away again in Margaritaville…”

11 responses to “The Escapist Fantasy

  1. When I was growing up in the UK, my escapist fantasy it was the Hawaiian island of Molokai. It seemed very warm and exotic compared to the southwest of England in the 70s!

  2. Oh yea… sometimes nothing sounds better. I have many variations of the escapist fantasy!

  3. Margaritaville is in Key West, Florida…so it's totally doable for you (and the sand is nearby as well).

    Just keep an eye on that shaker of salt…your only responsibility! 🙂

    My escape would be somewhere overseas…like Italy or Spain. It would involve outdoor cafes and red wine and all sorts of interesting characters.

    PS – Now you have me REALLY thinking about this!

  4. Interesting post Phil. I like your fantasy.

    I think for me it would a time of complete peace away from everyone. No phone calls, no deadlines, no kids, no drama. Just time to be really creative. Eat when I want, sleep when I want, do what I want.

    I'm a free spirit and yet I feel I've had my wings clipped. I'm always trying to do and be what everyone else wants me to be, and I'm fed up with it.

    I suppose I'm talking about complete freedom to be myself. I don't think I've had that in my life, ever.

  5. Matthew- It's funny you mention Hawaii. The picture included with this post was taken as I stood on a beach in Hawaii. Sadly I chose to be responsible and return home.

    Dawn- Well I want to hear your escape fantasy! Write about it somewhere!

    Scarlet- Last year when I was in Rome I had the fantasy of walking out of my hotel and into Europe just to see what I could see.

    LL- I know the feeling and I'd love to hear your story of what would happen if you had that complete freedom.

  6. *fawns at feet*

    Corona, hammock, warm sand between my toes. I'm easy.

  7. I will do that, Phil. Escapist fantasy post coming soon to a blog near you.

  8. Have to tell you – I read that line “slip off my black dress” and was about to ask you some questions!! Then I saw the word “shoes” on the next line.

    My escapist fantasy? A month in a European city with no e-mail and no phones.

  9. I made the same mistake as Riot Kitty! For some reason my mind inserted a comma between the “black dress” and “shoes” – which makes your fantasy somewhat more interesting than you probably intended.

  10. PG- I like how you think!

    RK and Dzeni- What is wrong with you two? Then again, doesn't everyone look good in a little black dress? Trust me, I've got the legs to pull it off.

  11. Hill walking in Ireland. Breathtaking!

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