The Blanch Blog
Follow Kyle's thoughts on his artistic journey
The Dull Days:
Life on the road is usually an epic adventure, action-packed with unexpected obstacles and extravagant characters… but it can sometimes be lonely and boring. Especially when the tour group is small, like ours—with only five people and a dog—we get to know each other very quickly and don’t always wish to socialize with each other during our bit of free time. I’m learning to deal with days like today when I’ve got nothing to do, and am sitting alone at a Holiday Inn in the-middle-of-nowhere, Indiana. It’s days like this that I find myself missing friends and the comfort of my own home; of course, in these situations I have two options: 1.) Waste my day wallowing in boredom, or 2.) Be productive.
When those inevitable bored times come, usually after a long day of driving, I don’t particularly feel like reading or writing for one of my self-appointed projects because I have all this pint-up energy from the day. So I try to motivate myself to workout or swim in the hotel facilities. This is the best way to get rid of the wiggles and writing blocks, and it’s a great way to stay in shape on the road when all that’s usually available is fast food… Literally, the only thing within walking distance here is a Subway and McDonalds, and I would be ecstatic if I never stepped foot into either of those establishments again in my life… At least nowadays all the fast food chains have a salad or healthy option… although you can only have a McSalad or Grilled McWrap so many times before breaking down and ordering a BigMac and fries! MmmmMmmm Good! Needless to say it’s really easy to get soft when the only physically exerting days are show days. For that reason I should constantly stay proactive to keep my body and mind stimulated.
I do allow myself to have a lazy night every now and then and just watch hours of hotel cable while glued to Facebook, but I don’t feel fulfilled after a night like that. It’s always nights when I can workout, read a book, write some of my play, and learn something new that I feel good about my day off. Yet, even when I succeed at doing all that, sometimes I still feel bored and lonely. So what do I do then? It sounds crazy, but I actually have a few action figures I carry with me in my suitcase; Spiderman and Wolverine make great friends! But seriously, bringing something useless from home to set out in the hotel room makes the place feel homey. When the heart misses home the most though, FaceTime and Skype are beautiful things; family always loves to hear what’s new. If not the family then someone random is always available to catch up, and this is crucial to continue close relationships after college. Missing interaction with a lot of people that you really connect with on a deep level is probably the hardest thing about traveling extensively. Fellowship is so important.
Some people suggest that my job must be like an extended vacation, but it is not always a picnic to stay constantly separated from ninety percent of your wardrobe, adorable pets, and perfectly plush bed. After a while one misses having appointments with friends at the local coffee shop and having a trusted church family. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job, but it’s not paradise to be trapped in the middle of nowhere without a car to explore the town… However, with a positive attitude and motivation from somewhere deep within, it is possible to make the most of dull days on the road, and have a good time!
This is a safe zone for me to record artistic growth. This may include: character research, behind the scenes peeks, expounding on the places I travel, interesting interactions with other humans, lessons I've learned, advice for other artists, or anything that strikes me as inspiring on any given day!