Have you ever noticed that while in holiday mode, you cope surprisingly well on only 8% of your worldly goods?
For example, I have minimal make up here in Spain with me – my daughter and I travelled hand-luggage – and I’m managing perfectly well to look half human. So, why do I possess (back home in the cupboard at the top of the stairs) fifty four other lipsticks I’ve rarely worn but keep for that occasion I remain convinced will come?
And why does the vision of me tipping the lipsticks and further examples of hastily bought eye-enhancing but now out-of-date offerings in the grey basket (£3.99 for a set of two from somewhere I can’t recall) into a bin fill me with panic? FOMO?
I am beginning to see why some folks sell their houses, and backpack around the world to gorge themselves on experiences while still alive, as opposed to filling their homes with gadgets and paraphernalia over the decades which need insuring or cleaning, only to be leaving the planet one day without them.
I read a post this morning which got me thinking… love it when other blogger’s words do that to me. Pop over and take a look at why this writer travels.
My wanderlust for exploration started relatively recently and I think the coincidence that my children arrived at adulthood in fact makes it no coincidence at all.
A huge chunk of their smaller years we stayed put on the farm, save the annual pilgrimage to Cornwall. What more did they need? Wildlife at our fingertips, trucks and tractors for them to steer across stubble fields while sat on my or Man of the Woods’ knees, a pony in the rather large back garden meaning no livery fees, a local primary school with friends living nearby. Perfection personified.
But there was one animal lurking beneath the surface of my union with Man of the Woods, hibernating. Wanderlust.
I’d holidayed abroad a few times before I met him; Tunisia (there’s a short story, right there!), Romania, Miami, Scotland (I know that one is not abroad but him it may as well be). Once we were married and living on the farm, the next generation to maintain the 500 acres, a rather busy schedule ensured there were no weekends off, no finishing at 6pm, no even remote possibility of pre-booking holidays (‘have to wait and see if I’m still spraying, see what the weather does that month’), no accepting weekend barbq offers at the school gates from other 9-5 parents (eventually the invites stopped coming) and no vague hopes of even a cinema trip on a random Tuesday evening if thought about at 3pm (‘gotta finish this field before tomorrow’s rain’ – those bastards who developed tractor lights so efficient you could illuminate a small village from the front of a John Deere).
It’s out. And there’s no forcing it back either. Wanderlust, with it’s searching eyes and natural inquisitive nature backed up by a steely determination.
The last few months I’ve rediscovered my love of reading fiction, I’ve re-awakened an old habit of writing diaries but call it blogging (I must show you one soon, they are embarrassingly hilarious and self illustrated too 😱🙈). I’ve embarked on the adventure that is writing a first draft of a novel with a very vague notion that I might self-publish if agents and publishers politely ask me to move to one side having witnessed its early pages.
I’ve also left the homestead more frequently.
I love my home, don’t get me wrong. I love Man of the Woods too, we share twenty four years of together history.
But God, I love travel. And he doesn’t, or hasn’t. I admire his often repeated mantra that the farm; the trees and hedges he walks so often, the soil in the fields he turns annually and knows so well, is his world. He feels secure that his surroundings remain constant. He needs nothing more he says, though he adds that he needs me and the kids around him when possible.
(May I add here that I love driving different hire cars – they’re so clean!).
The excitement tingles through me when I see the unmade road, the unknown territory, the visions which await my eyes around every corner (ps I made a U-turn here, don’t panic!)
Wildlife new to my senses, geographical rock formations which question my sparse engineering mind, sounds which can only be heard at that moment in time in a place far away from home, smells to tantalise your taste buds.
Man of the Woods enjoys simple pleasures. He does not have a smartphone, despises FB. Hates with a passion materialist people, or folks who move to the countryside from the cities because, he feels, they want to somehow become country people yet he claims they wouldn’t know a birch tree from a foxglove. He airs his opinions, often over open pages of the Telegraph at the kitchen table, and I listen because my counselling taught me everyone is entitled to their opinion. Some I don’t agree with, but that’s ok too.
Last year I was here in this very apartment with the very same daughter (that’s a relief as I only have the one daughter) and I was reading a book that weekend called ‘Get Your Shit Together‘ by Sarah Knight. It’s funny as hell, and rather poignant. In fact, if you’re human and breathing and living any sort of life, I’d recommend any or all of her books – and no, she’s not paying me. Here, in fact, is proof I was reading it last September on the roof terrace while devouring pizza,
And here’s her first in the series which I rushed off to buy when I returned from that weekend. These are books that genuinely made me look at life differently. For the much better 💫
What a difference a year makes.
I’m here. MoW is there. But he’s happy, not jealous or making me feel guilty with manipulative wording, but on the phone showing genuine pleasure that we are still in bed doing what we want at midday!
Looks like I’m getting my shit together so let’s drink to that coz also I’m a thousand words up on my wordcount 💫