Do you know what time is?
In Thailand this question was put to me often. Now, before you go accusing the Thai of philosophical heavy-handedness, know that the askers of this question always, always meant to ask for the time–what time is it?–but their muddled English sometimes achieved a kind of unintended profundity, if you were looking for it.
One day we may wake up to find that the things that used to scare us don’t anymore.
Or maybe we find that they scare us less, those old fears, only to be replaced by profounder, less nameable fears. I am talking here about the kind of fear that makes us reckless, not wary, the fear that gives us nerve; the fear that keeps youths bouncing from city to city, that makes spouses stray, that makes thrill junkies and wanderlusters of us all; the fear that has me, this very moment, packing my bags with my eyes on another continent, a different world.