Stops 1 and 2: Toorbul, Queensland and Eungai Creek, mid north coast NSW
For those of you who know me very well, you know that I’m just plain and simple a nomad. Always have been since I was 17 and before that, through my parents, and I suspect I always will be. I used to think there was something wrong with me (well there probably is but not what I initially thought) as I couldn’t settle for more than a few years in one place. As far back as I can remember I had this thirst to go into unexplored territory whether at home in Aus or away from our shores.
It wasn’t until the last 10 odd years that I realised that change is a huge part of me. I absolutely embrace it and even think it’s part of my DNA! I loathe most types of routine. Except maybe for my glass of bubbles or two in the evenings. And chocolate, dark of course with sea salt and caramel, after dinner. But apart from that I mean. I thrive on change, new places, peoples, food and experiences. It so totally feeds and nourishes me. And I’m grateful that I’ve finally in my later years accepted and love that part of myself. It pushes me out on a limb and onwards and upwards and backwards and tests me, tires me but I’m rarely standing still.
In these last months many a friend has told me I’m brave for doing what I’m doing and I suspect they’re thinking especially at my age (I don’t think 41 is that old, is it??). Either way, I’ve been doing this all my life so to me it’s not at all brave. But that’s the same for anyone we admire who are doing something we ourselves fear. So if I manage to inspire one person to go out and do what they dream of and kicking any fears aside, then I’ve been rewarded tenfold.
So now, another adventure to add to my collection. And there have been a few in the past 7 years since coming back from southern Spain and living in Noosa. There were the unforgettable 9 months volunteering in Viet Nam and Cambodia with a trip to South America and Denmark in the middle during 2014. Then the start of 2017 taking a ceramic residency in Tuscany, visiting my beloved Spain, then on to Denmark via Germany visiting special friends all along the way. And later the same year a wonderful trip down memory lane back in WA (where I hadn’t been for 20 years) seeing old long lost friends, and then over to Bali to visit more friends. And finally a bit of an unplanned trip back to Malaga Spain to sort out a flat I acquired.
I spent all of this year home Airbnb hosting again, did well with it and toboot met many wonderful people some who have become good friends. But my wings did not enjoy being clipped and my nature is not one of having no freedom to take flight at a whim. Hence the decision to sell my home, which was absolutely the right one, sell off half my furniture (the trusty steed has just gone on Gum Tree) and put the rest into storage and bless myself with no ties. When we finally settled and I left Noosa in my rear-view mirror I felt an insane sense of freedom, relief and excitement of what lies in store on this new journey.
I set off the day before we settled in the direction of Toorbul and my dear friends Bron and Johnny. Always great company, fabulous food thanks mostly to chef Johnny, great conversation and laughs. I’ve known Bron for 30 odd years so it was a blessing to find when I decided to make Noosa my home that she was just down the road.
After Toorbul, I pointed my steed south again and kept going until I got to my sister and BIL’s (BrotherInLaw) at Eungai Creek. My BIL has had a two brain tumour ops in as many months which has left him legally blind – we hope only for now. Life has changed enormously for them both and whilst unimaginably challenging, they are both coping mostly and getting some great support from their community. We seriously don’t know what at any given moment life is going to throw our way, which is why I’m doing what I’m doing – and what I want.
Unlike most other journeys on this one I have very few plans. I don’t do well with planning far in advance except when I have to. So apart from leaving from Sydney 11 January for Bali where I’ll spend the first couple of months and a possible trip to Oman, my thoughts are to hit Europe for their spring around April and do a combination of house-sitting, workaway and visiting dear friends. I want to stay at least a month to 3 in each place so I really get immersed in the culture, people and community of wherever I’ve chosen.
The bucket list is very very long! Italy, Greece and France are fairly high on my list with many other places also – the 5 Blue Zones in the world (starting with Ikaria thanks to my Kiwi friend Bec). I may never come back!
But you’ll have to wait and see where the wind blows me because it can notoriously change direction at any given moment.
With that, I wish you a happy, safe, fun and healthy festive season and right through 2019. See you – somewhere!
With love and blessings Glen