Well, folks, three weeks from today the heavy-lifting of prep work will finally be all over and I can say goodbye and thanks to people for a week, and then it’s off to live the life of my dreams.
It sounds so trite, saying it that way, because people throw that crap around all the time. “Live the life of your dreams!”
And how’s that working out for you? Know anyone who’s doing that? I only know a couple, myself. But here’s the thing, I’ll know one more person living their dream life in just three weeks.
It blows my mind. I can’t even tell you how exhausting and emotional my life is right now. I’ve burst into tears today already and once yesterday. I’m not sad or upset. It’s fatigue. I can tell you honestly I have never been this tired in my life except when I had pneumonia and mono. I’m not sick, though, I’m just at the end of nearly three years of mountain-climbing. The tears are also the knowledge that I’m about to leap out from “my troubled past” and land in a life I can’t fathom.
And all I did, really, was to decide it was something worth doing. Then I made that decision nearly every day for 2 years. That’s… what, 730 decisions I followed through on? Probably more, since it kinda started in January, 2013.
Now, poof, here we go. September 27th, 2015. Literally days away. 19 days left in this city. 20 days till I leave. 21 till I start goodbyes in Vancouver, turnin my work computer, see my parents, get a makeover, come to terms with my past. (I’ve sent a letter to the people living in my childhood home. With any luck, I’ll see inside it before I go. You know… really address my past.)
Today I buy new camera lenses, and that is why I’m writing for you. Another part is that I recently had someone tell me it was my “responsibility as a blogger” to teach about everything I see, do, or even cook, and decide to share with my audience. (She was miffed I didn’t give a recipe for something I cooked without a recipe.) Her expectations sent me off the deep end last weekend, because the last thing I want is an audience who make demands of my time rather than just enjoying the byproduct of my life. (Ed. Note: They sold my lens! But I’m 6 weeks late. Friday!)
So, to that end, here are some of the things you can expect of me when I travel.
I truly want a “creative life,” and this means doing photography and writing as much as I possibly can, while still exploring the world.
I have the opportunity to spend five years living a dream, and believe me, I know how hard I’ve worked for this. My first responsibility is to live in service of that dream. I will share photography, too. Both online for free, and also for purchase at a reasonable price.
I will Instagram often and share that content through both Twitter and Facebook. When time allows, I’ll tell you what you’re seeing, maybe even the history of it, or how I came to find it.
Right now, I have a fantasy of getting up every morning in November to shoot sunrises over the Istrian wine valley. Of course I’ll be sharing things like that, and places I visit. This is as much a record for me to enjoy in the years to come as it is to bolster an audience.
I’ll still be using Twitter and Facebook because I like having a tether to the people in my life, but I’ve never wanted to live in the present as much as I will when I’m abroad. That’s best done not surfing the web. Still, writing is why I breathe, and I dream of nothing more than I dream of a life spent writing, and now I’ll finally be living a life truly worth writing about.
I’m unsure how many blog posts a week you can expect, but I’m betting three is a good number.
But I’ll be updating my Facebook Full Nomad page with snippets in time — five minutes in a coffee shop, waiting for a train, pausing during a sunset over some foreign valley. I’ll write at length when I post on Instagram too, which again will post to Facebook and Twitter.
Twitter, I won’t be around for chats anymore, or very often, but I’ll still update, check, and reply when time is allowed.
I’ve only really edited one video in my life but I really loved doing it. It was for the Indiegogo campaign I’m running (with just 10 days left!) and I had stressed out about it for months. In the end, I got it done in two days and I’m extremely proud of the outcome.
I look forward to creating my own video footage. I’m buying a GoPro Hero today and envision things like taping my drives through Istria, or a bicycle tour of Zagreb, and so much more.
That’ll be a learning curve for me but I’m more confident now that I can make it work, and it’s just another segment of a Creative Life.
What You Can’t Expect
I’ve worked my ass off for just shy of three years — plus two jobs, clients, and a whole lot of hustle, not to mention hundreds, maybe thousands of hours of travel research. I’ve sacrificed in EVERY area of my life.
This trip? This adventure? It’s my dream. It’s my life. It’s for me. It’s the icing on the cake, the pie in the sky, the reward on my plate.
I will share that with you. I’ll broadcast my videos and my thoughts and my photos, air my wistful sighs, educate you when I can about how to achieve such a dream yourself.
But I will not be held ransom to an audience who thinks they’re entitled to answers for every little question. There are not enough hours in the day to answer all the questions while living an interesting life. My working-everyday-for-the-man chapter of my life is OVER.
I will answer questions when I can, just because I’m that kind of person, but often I will just remember those questions asked and then try to answer them in future blog posts/photos/updates about that subject. I will not keep names or notify people of those “answered in a roundabout way later” questions. I’m not a nanny and I’m not good at remembering names. Follow my stuff or don’t; either way it’s all there for you. If a new question is asked, I’ll probably try to answer it. If I’ve answered it before, then I have better things to do than repeat myself. Because: Travel.
I’m a blogger doing her thing. There are lines in the sand because the dream comes first.
The Short Story
I will literally be living a dream come true. You get a window into that. But that’s it, I won’t promise more than that. If there’s one thing I know I won’t regret, it’s less time spent online.
I’ll definitely still connect, though — this is a lifeline to my friends and family when I’m abroad, lost in an endless adventure with no familiarity, and I will cherish that lifeline. But, you know, one big update is better than forty emails.
Still, hopefully given glimpse at such a life, you’ll be better inspired to chase your own dreams. Hopefully I’ll help you realize sacrifice and hard work can and do pay off, if you’re patient and you constantly re-assess how far is left to go (and done). Maybe you’ll get more creative about effecting change in your world. Who knows?
All I can do is live my life and do my thing. I don’t want to be skewed by what people want me to project or present. I want to devour the world and share it my way. The nature of sharing will be process of learning and growing as time goes on.
I think a lot of you will understand the willingness to share — but not too much. For some of you, this whole post may come off as harsh, but I question if maybe you are expecting too much of bloggers, if that’s the case.
If blogging becomes something demanded of me, my quality and level of introspection will decrease. If sharing becomes a chore, you won’t be inspired by me anymore. Shit, I won’t be inspired anymore. What we both need — and should want — is for me to wake up excited to live every day, peppered with an occasional OMIGOD, I HAVE TO SHARE THIS. Because, really, that’s what I want — to be excited to tell you, my awesome audience, about some new place or experience. I hope you just enjoy the ride — then I will too.