Jealousy is a funny thing. I'm not jealous of people with vast amounts of money, or talents I don't possess. There is the occasional professional jealousy, but that's usually more akin to admiration for a writer with great skill than it is to envy. And yet the smallest thing this afternoon knocked me over, and I hate the fact that I now am possessed of what Shakespeare described as the emotion "which doth mock/The meat it feeds on (Othello)," also describing "How all the other passions fleet to air,/As doubtful thoughts, and rash-embraced despair,/And shuddering fear, and green-eyed jealousy(The Merchant of Venice)!"
I've had a really nice day. Got up, went to the an awesome class at the gym, came home and have been relaxing. The first issue of my subscription to Entertainment Weekly arrived in my mailbox this afternoon. Ole Miss beat the Gators, Miami lost, and FSU is currently looking more like their old selves than they have in awhile. Then earlier this afternoon, I noticed on Facebook that my cousin Matt is in London. He travels a lot for business, so that wasn't anything new. I shot him a note and jokingly told him to have a pint for me while he was there. He wrote me back just a little bit ago, telling me that he's actually on vacation, and his wife Sarah and his sister, my cousin Carrie, both flew over and joined him in Brussels, went to Paris while he continued to work, and are now hanging out in London, visiting with one of Sarah's brothers.
Being Navy brats, they've always traveled a lot, even as adults, and it's never phased me. I certainly have a longing to travel, have never been jealous of their globe-trotting. But London... I've always wanted to walk along the Thames, look at the Crown Jewels, stare up at Big Ben and wander amongst the giants resting in Poets Corner at Westminster Abby, not to mention just taking in the atmosphere of a city with a history far older than the country of my birth. And suddenly, sitting here reading Matt's note about Carrie being excited because she'd never been to Europe before, I found myself possessed by jealous thoughts, mixed with equal parts of inadequacy and mild despair, that flashed rapidly through my brain: Will I ever make it there? Or once I do, will I be too old to really enjoy it (the sensible part of my brain asking at the same time, 'And how old will that be, exactly?)? I think that if I had a different job and made more money, I'd be able to hop on a plane at the drop of a hat. I can hardly afford to go visit my brother in Oregon in the spring, much less fly overseas.
But at the same time, I'm mentally admonishing myself for this stupid, defeatist attitude. Who says I'll never go? Only me, and only if I listen to the ridiculous blather of the little cartoonish devil I'm preparing to flick off my left shoulder. I will make it there some day. Until then, I'll content myself with a post card, because Carrie never fails to send me one from wherever she travels. :)