I suck at planning ahead. Don’t get me wrong, I love writing lists and making spread sheets, spending hours staring at maps and creating plans in my mind and on paper. The problem is, I rarely stick to them. I’m impulsive. I don’t like wasting my time doing things that don’t make me happy. So when I realize my heart’s desires have changed, I adapt. I let go of plans. And then I make new ones until I find something that truly feels right.
And so, after Montenegro we will turn around and go back to Switzerland before heading to the UK.
For a month or two, don’t worry. We’re not buying a house or making babies. We’re buying a car and and will sort out how the hell we’re going to pay taxes in a smarter way (what we’re doing right now isn’t working too well financially).
Why are we buying a car? Well, I’m glad you asked. I know the original plan was to use a mix of public transport and hitchhiking to get to India. Which would have been great. But it’s just not the time for this. I’m still a full-time student and Will works like 10 hours a day (and I’m so grateful for that because it allows me to focus on my studies and creating an income from blogging and social media). We’ve got tech equipment to carry and a MILLION books. When we left Switzerland I decided to switch to using e-books and write all my notes on my laptop – this isn’t working out for me. My eyes are killing me from staring at a screen all day, I can’t focus while I’m reading (I’m a highlighter and post-its kinda girl) and I’m falling behind on university because of it. I want my books back.
A big part of what I want to create online has to do with cooking delicious vegan food. After staying in our current Airbnb for almost a month now, I realised that I miss having basic cooking utensils like potato peelers, a decent knife, a grater to make Rösti (I haven’t made Rösti in a month and I don’t like it.) and a friggin’ blender to make creamy cauliflower sauces. I get that it may seem silly to abandon a travel plan just so I can be reunited with my Rösti grater and blender, but cooking is an important part of my life. Gosh, I’m allowed to have a hobby.
So yeah, we’re getting a car so we can put our stuff somewhere. And yes, for convenience. I think after four and a half years of travel a little convenience will be nice.
In a way I’m really disappointed in myself, because travelling by car isn’t the best for the environment. I know it would be better to hitchhike or to take the train or to just stand still. I’m trying my best to find a balance between making myself happy and doing good. I’m trying really hard not to lose my soul to material possessions. But at this stage of our lives, this way of travelling isn’t sustainable. And I know settling down somewhere would make us miserable.
Soooo, anyway. Where do we go from here? What’s the current plan for 2017? I think we’re still gonna travel to India overland. But the route has changed slightly. Right now we’re looking into going to Russia first, as we’ve heard rumors of unlimited mobile internet bundles there. Russia also seems really cheap and I’ve got lots of people I need to visit there after my huuuge hitchhiking trip through Russia and China a few years back. I then want to make a little loop through the ‘stans and visit Iran, head back into Russia and keep on moving towards India. We’re still trying to figure out how to get the car across China (hint: this involves lots of paperwork and special permits. Or possibly a boat) and also I’d like to go to Japan. Oh yeah, of course India. Can you take a car into India? I don’t know. We’ll find out.
Oh yeah, we’re also finally gonna register our marriage at the South African embassy (getting married when you have 3 different passports isn’t exactly the most fun way to spend your free time). This means that if and when we somehow end up in South Africa, we could stay there a while and Will could easily get a spousal visa (being married with 4 different home countries between the two of you is, on the other hand, a very fun way to spend your time).
So as you can see, our minds are jumping from one continent to the next and that’s ok. Don’t be surprised if I’ll tell you next week we bought a boat and are sailing to Jamaica. You have now been officially warned of my inability to stick to a plan.
What’s remarkable is that while I change my mind about a lot of things, I’ve never once changed my mind about who I want to do all those things with. In all this mess, I’m so grateful that I have one constant in my life: my wonderful husband and eternal travel buddy Will.
Happy New Year. I truly hope it will be a good one.