I’m off.

As you read this, I’ll be on my merry way to the airport.

I'm off.
Photo by Nick Meek

To this very moment, I’m not 100% sure where I’m going (after I land in London; read below for how I’d love your help on this). Or why. Two weeks ago I did a post on being a modern day nomad and that my challenge is trusting that I need to move on, often. And being OK with moving one dot at a time:

“But it’s become my latest experiment…to trust that the dots will join and that I must simply move to the next dot. I don’t have to have a complete picture; I just have to look out for the next one. Then the next…This, of course, entails constantly watching for serendipitous opportunities.

Alright then. Time to do it.

how it will work

Looking out for serendipitous opportunities…It will entail being quite mindful and less rushy than I normally am. It will entail taking up offers and invitations and ideas as they come up, gleaning advice from people who know more than me and just trusting from there. Few plans, just trusting.

I read a while back the best way to make decisions is to defer to others who know more than you. We have limited decision-making energy. So the less we use of it – by deferring – the more energy we have left over for good, important decisions.

I also have a few aims.

I’d like to record them so I can come back to them. Also, by putting them out to the world, as I am now, it means I have a better chance of honouring them.

* I want have to disconnect. Unglue myself from social media ties. It’s influencing my nervous system, my cerebral synapses. Even when I meditate, my whole nervous system can’t “let go” of this attachment to engagement. I keep ricocheting away from mindfulness to my “I need to respond to…” or “I have to update…” default positions. It’s got me really sad of late. To the point where I’ve been snapping with people, annoyed that they’re another commitment, another thing to respond to.  Terrible. Terrible. I’ve written a post on this, which will run in the next few weeks.

Could I do it where I am, here in Australia. Nope. I have to have a symbolic break. I need a holiday from it. I need a holiday (it’s been 7 years since I’ve had more than two days offline).

* I’m looking for a new home. Australia ain’t cutting it for me just now. I’m not nation bashin’ or nothin’. Well, perhaps I am. My position is this: I find the political and social climate here flaccid. It’s been too good for too long and we’ve lost the striving, surging forward, fired up spirit that once defined us. Politics is a shamble, but it’s merely a reflection of where we’re all at. The rest of the world is suffering genuine economic hardship. We’re not (the standard of living across the board has only improved). Yet we’re getting worked up about minutiae and giving less of our hearts than ever. I could be wrong, but I feel there are other places in the world just now that are striving and surging and getting fired up a whole lot more. As I say, I could be wrong. But I have to go see. I’m looking out for community and social initiatives geared at bringing people closer. Outdoor experiences. People giving a shit. Please, if you know what I mean and you’ve found somewhere that fits this brief, please share.

* I want to climb back out to the farthest limb. This is where I breathe best. I want to get a bit scared and I want to “fend” with what I’ve got. I want to stand out there naked of my protection and guises and meet people on exposed terms. No background. No story. It’s been too long since I’ve done this. It’s good to get a bit scared.

* I’m starting the next phase of my life. I’ve done everything in Chapter 1. I don’t want to hover here, waiting for the bits of the plot I was anticipating (kids, husband etc). I want to move on and create my next chapter. A few months ago I wrote about wanting to quit the dress rehearsing and enter the play.

“For the first time in my life, I’m not rehearsing for anything. There’s no next milestone on my path. What’s left? What’s next?”

This is the “what’s next”. It will lay the foundations for Chapter 2. I hope.

* I finally know what I need to do. I’ve explored a few themes lately that express stuff that’s been bubbling. None of it has coalesced fully. But it’s come together now.

I’m curious to know what life is like when I let nothing happen, when I let go of plans.

I’m curious to know what it feels like to jump…and have life just support me.

I’m reminded of my favourite poem, by Mary Oliver, which I wrote about here. It brings things together nicely:

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice-
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do–
determined to save
the only life you could save.

The melancholy has been terrible. Truly.

The next couple of months…

I know above I mentioned I’m disconnecting, but it’s only 90% true.

For the next four weeks I’m off email and this blog (I’ve written a bunch of posts that will go up automatically, and Jo will be running things and answering questions…you’ll barely notice I’m gone). I’m also disengaging from most social media (although Jo will “act” as me, responding to any issues on Twitter and Facebook etc).

However, and this might seem contradictory, I will be using Twitter and Instagram for travel purposes. I’ve thought about it. It works for me.

If you were keen, I’d love your input.

From time to time I’ll shout out when I’m in a town or region and invite anyone nearby for a cup of tea. Or perhaps I’ll just reach out to get some travel tips…in the spirit of taking up serendipitous opportunities. I truly hope to cross paths with you.

Until, then, adios amigos.


Oh, but please do share any places in Europe – and beyond – that you think are worth taking a look at for their great social/community/heart-engaged initiatives. It will give me something to read on the plane.



Share this post