One week to go til I set off on my big adventure…
So, the idea of taking time out from work is also meant to be a break from my über-planned life to date, in which I’ve never been out of work for a single day since I left university, and slogged away at my great and interesting jobs almost without pause since the summer of 1987.
Throw caution to the winds… throw plans out of the window, and just go with the flow…and see what happens. What turns up.
It lasted about a week. It turns out I can’t live without a plan. I was almost cracking up with the strain of not knowing what I was about to do next. Lost and anxious. My good friend Shirley in Boston came to the rescue. “Carpe the f***ing diem”, she said.
So I did. A bit of googling and chatting with family, and the price of a round-the-world flight and I was smiling again. It’s going to take me down to Australia and New Zealand first to see family, including celebrating my Kiwi nephew Neo’s 13th birthday (he’s my boy in the pic!), then across the Pacific to Easter Island, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia and ending in Costa Rica. I gave myself 4 months, and told myself to kick back.
Kick back? Me? Now, with one week to go, I have 4 different ‘to do’ lists and 2 spreadsheets!
The itinerary spreadsheet is already telling me that I’m going to need way more time in each place than I’ve got, and should consider packing a magic carpet to expedite my odyssey between forests, mountains, cities and coasts.
The budget spreadsheet is even more alarming. As I’ve added in the possibility of all the amazing trekking trails, Galapagos island trips, eco-lodges, jungle tours, boat trips and bus journeys … the recurring refrain has become ‘what the hell, trip of a lifetime, it’s only money – this is LIVING’! And try not to think about the bank balance bit too much. As my mum always said on every holiday, “enjoy it, because it’s just bread and jam when we get home”. We never understood the threat – bread and jam is lovely 🙂
So, that’s me in kickback mode – it’s trip tick-list central whilst I’m still in full-time day job mode. But it’s getting me fired up and ready to go.
But I’m looking forward to the day when I’m swaying in a hammock in a jungle lodge, pisco in hand, watching the flitting of hummingbirds and those spreadsheets will be just an out-of-date hazy memory lost in the far recesses of a well-worn rucksack along with the dirty laundry. Let’s hope.