What does “the real life” mean?, Rapa Nui

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For many years my love has been a tiny island on the Pacific Ocean – Rapa Nui. It was love from the first sight. Travelling from the airport to the hotel I already wanted re-book my ticket and stay for longer. During the next three years I bought the return ticket a few weeks at most after my return to Warsaw. This is not a real life – that was the most common comment.
On Rapa Nui I had a home, friends, befriended shop ladies and fishermen, I had my Internet and a place of work. I had a daily routine. I functioned quite well, travelling between Poland and Chile.
‘This is not a real life’
One time my friends visited. They also fell in love with the island – in its magic, the power of the ocean, the strength of the locals, in extraordinary traditional dances, delicious food. They understood why I love this island.
‘This is not a real life’ They said
For some time now I have worked several months a year outside of Poland. My work friends and I worked out a system of co-operation over the distance. I work, they work – there is no tragedy. But during the conversation about my lifestyle I hear… “Some day you will have to start a real life. When will you finally do it? You don’t live – you’re having a break. You have to live and work every day, have your own place on Earth, you cannot always go away and work remotely. What kind of job is this?” Well… We live in such times – we work in such a way! In such situations I always remember the question asked to the alpinists: ‘Why do you climb?’ Or rather their  answer: ‘Because we can.’ I also do what I can, even though I often encounter a different model for what I should do: Every day routine functioning, MINUS changing the address, getting to know new places and people, and limited pleasures of life (whatever’s too big is not real). My home is where my suitcase is.
My friends are where my Skype is. My work is where my laptop is. And my laptop is with me 7 days a week and it sleeps next to me – this will be confirmed by every one of my friends, who was with me on holiday or even away for a long weekend. I have no need to have a permanent address to feel that my life is real, but instead I crave for confidence that what I do is exactly what I want to do. That the place where I am is the place where I absolutely want to be. What does the “real life” mean? I live and breathe – and I do not pretend it. My every-day reality is not routine. My home is not a point. My friends, family, co-workers – they all accepted it as my truth.
I never hear these comments from those who have free, artistic professions, who travel – sometimes for months – with their whole family, including small children. But still when I meet people who are on 2-3 weeks’ holiday, I know that at the end of the conversation I will probably hear: “But this is not a real life…” For me, the life of a person who loves a corporation is just as real as mine. It is simply different. When they ask me why I need all those travels, I remember the poem by Lermontow, which I have known since I was six:
Everyone has their own real life.

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