It’s been a week since we shut the door on a trailer containing all of our earthly possessions and drove away from Sydney in pursuit of a dream that has been five years in the making.
After trouble-shooting some issues with the van (poor Ness was none too pleased at being made to pull such a heavy load), we made it to the NSW-Victorian boarder. We spent the first night in Albury – a town that seems to have gotten surprisingly cool since last I visited (shout out to my new friend Kimbo who left a comment on my last blog with tips for finding the best coffee in Albury; it was required).
The next morning, we drove on to Melbourne where we picked up the kitchen module for our van, said hey to a couple of our favourite humans, had an obligatory drink at a small bar (hot toddy for me as I was feeling under the weather) and enjoyed some delicious vegetarian food (I asked Carl, an avid meat-eater, what he wanted to eat for dinner and he replied, “Vegetables,” with no further elaboration, so I’m guessing he wasn’t feeling 100% either). Then, after a sleep in our fourth bed in four nights, we rose bright and early Jesus-style on Easter Sunday and boarded the watery tomb ferry for Tasmania.
If you didn’t gather from the subtly of my last sentence, I’m not a huge fan of the Tasman boat crossing, but it’s the only option if you want to bring the entire contents of your life (including, but not limited to, a literal kitchen sink) to the Little Island. I managed to get a few hours of client work done and avoided sea sickness with the help of some ginger travel calm (fun fact: it’s apparently as clinically effective as the chemical stuff). Nine hours, one movie and a cheeseburger later, we had made it to Tassie.
We’ve landed on my brother’s organic veggie farm near Launceston. Him, his wife and their almost-two-year-old daughter are away doing seasonal work on the plateau so it’s just us, a crap-load of vegies, four cows and the neighbours Kelpie who’s adopted us. Bliss. The weather has been glorious – sunny and crisp with unexpectedly warm afternoons – and we’ve been going to sleep super early and waking up to the sunrise.
Despite my excitement at the promise of the new life we’re creating, and the relief of putting the packing chaos behind us, my main feeling since getting here has been intense exhaustion. I guess it’s to be expected – packing up your life, getting rid of most of your stuff, quitting your steady job, setting up a business, selling your apartment and moving across the sea is not a straightforward process. The past few days I’ve been brain-dead, irritable and introverted to the extreme – even talking to Carl feels like drain on my energy that I’ve resented. I’ve needed to crash and haven’t been able to because (blessedly) I’ve had a lot of freelance work on. I keep telling myself I should be thankful for the opportunity to live as a digital nomad (and I am), but in a week where everything in me has just wanted to stop and let myself recover, it hasn’t been easy to get the creative juices flowing.
So today, on International Calm Day, I made a delicious breakfast (featuring farm veg and eggs from my sister’s chooks), kissed Carl goodbye (perhaps a little too cheerfully) as he headed into town to do some errands, fed the cows, checked the fences and took myself down to the creek to do my morning pages and my daily mindfulness meditation. It was the right move.
How did you spend International Calm Day? Did you manage to find a little pocket of peace in the chaos of life? Tell me in the comments below.