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Megha Kansra
Megha is a contributing columnist for the Fort Bend Star.
She is a junior student at Stephen F. Austin High School-FBISD.

This column expresses the personal opinions/views of the writer. If you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column, write a SIGNED letter to the editor. Name can be withheld by request with a valid day time phone number.
What a Tangled Web  
So, this one song I’ve heard goes: “It’s always better on holiday. That’s why we only work when we need the money.” And I was thinking, how true is this? I’ve always been tossed reprimands like “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop” and proverbs like “Early to bed, early to rise.” Things that generally indicate that a routine is best.

I wonder about this sometimes, and I ultimately pretty much decide that a contrast of the two is necessary for any sort of an analysis on what people end up preferring. And at no point is the contrast more stark and palpable than now, when bleary eyed students return to school reluctantly and settle back into the well-burrowed niche of their humdrum routines.

Images of holiday are still comfortingly fresh in our minds. Cozy dinners, outings with friends, sleeping in, staying up, lolling around, etc. Just generally a disruption of that almost religiously followed routine, like a swagger in our neat, horizontally lined agendas, once peppered with appointments and classes, and now blank as marble. Free, in fact, to be dotted and adorned with festive new pen colors and ideas. Oh, the holidays!

But how long does this last? Like a fading glimmer of a star in the sky, the charm of the holidays eventually wears off. In fact, even the holidays fall into a routine. While you once relied faithfully on variation to characterize your holidays, now activities are more same in their futility. So, eventually, the holidays become a mass of idle, sleepy days that stroll by slowly. The lack of purpose of everything becomes more and more evident, that need, that essential human need for a purpose, some defining goal, burns in all of us.

Of course, the zest of a just-returned-to routine is quite rejuvenating, too. People enjoy that things have a convenient allotment of time. The feelings of safety, of expectation, of warmth, start to enshrine them and make them feel more invigorated. After all, history has proven that people feel safer if they can rely on some pillar, some guiding precept or notion. The repetitive routine is the ideal framework for the development of some steady school of thought to rely on.

But then, again, who can doubt that the routine gets boring? Vacations start to sound so much more appealing, and people, frustrated, start to chunk their well-planned, very possibly color-coded agendas out of the window, only to get up five minutes later and dutifully retrieve it.

This frustration, this lack of clear preference between the holidays and the routine elicits a greater core human frustration: the wavering between settling and going wild. The hesitance between stepping out of that precious comfort zone and staying safely within boundaries in every sense. It’s the titanic monster people encounter in themselves when they’re forging personalities – deciding between “safe” and “exciting.”

But, ultimately, holiday cannot be valued without the contrast of a mundane routine. And the rigidity of the purposeful routine cannot be appreciated without the lingering emotions of idleness coloring the senses.

So, the two ideas are really pretty inextricable, engendering this paradoxical truth: settling is needed for worthy adventure, and adventure is needed to settle back down.

Megha is a contributing columnist for the Fort Bend Star.
She is a junior student in FBISD.

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   Last Update:  September 07, 2006