Three years of freedom and not giving up

It has been just about three years since we left Australia to embark on this lifestyle, give or take a few days. I’m not very good at remembering what day it is any more, unless I have a skype call to make or a toy being delivered. I am sure I would be more than capable of remembering the day if I needed to, but the glorious thing about my life, is that I don’t need to.

Five years ago I was a miserable ball of stress, until I decided it was time to make a change. I spent two years saving all my money in preparation for a journey I (we really, Sarah and I) had not decided yet we would take, I just knew that I had to change something. Two years later, with money in the bank, long brewing plans came into fruition and we decided to hit the road until we either got bored or ran out of money. Three years after that and I now know that there will likely never be anything that makes me stop this lifestyle.

beach-happy

RIDING THE WAVE

When we first left Australia I had this feeling that I used to verbalize to people, I felt like Sarah and I were on the crest of a cultural wave. I felt like this thing we were doing was becoming more mainstream and that some day soon we would realize we were part of a revolution, that the world was changing and more and more people were going to be giving up their desks and finding ways to be free.

Three years on I am thinking that maybe my views were skewed quite heavily by my own excitement to be doing something I never thought possible for myself. There seems to be a trend backwards now, that wave has broken and people are drifting back to a version of the lives they had before.

My place is not to judge, and everyone has their reasons for choosing the path they are on, but when I am so excited by my version of this nomadic lifestyle, my ongoing freedom and the plethora of choices which continue to open before me because I have given them the chance to present themselves, I can’t help but be surprised by what seems to me a backwards motion.

WARNING SIGNS

A few weeks before I left Australia, one of my bosses said to me, “You’ll be back. Six months, maybe a year, but you’ll be back.”. At the time I laughed and agreed that maybe he was right. These were untested waters and who knew what could happen. A few days later he committed suicide, leaving behind two kids and a boat load of money.

It is hard to determine how much of an effect that had on me. I was sorry none of us could have helped him. He had even mention to me that “Hell, maybe I will come join you in Thailand and leave all this shit.”. He of course had choices, but for some crazy reason which must have made sense in his head at the time, he only had one choice.

His death pushed me even more and helped affirm that the sadness I myself felt most of the time and the desperation for change was indeed something I should pay heed to. He could not imagine leaving that life behind, so he ended it. I am just grateful that life led me in a direction where I was able to make the hard choices which led me to where I am today.

MY FELLOW NOMADS

Which is why it is so hard for me to understand this return to the everyday world I see so many people suddenly taking. Most of them read this blog (or at least skim it), and so if they read this I don’t want them to take offence. Like I said we all have our own reasons for making the decisions we do. But if I am being honest with them and myself, I don’t know how after tasting the freedom this lifestyle gives you, you could be willing to give that up. I hope that your chosen path brings you happiness, and that you don’t fall back into the lifestyle which led you to seek this nomadic existence in the first place. I hope you are happy regardless of the choices you now make.

I have read it a number of times from a number of different sources, that either you are a traveler and will cling to this lifestyle with everything you have, or it will get too much for you and you will let it go after a year or two. Three years on I see and understand that now more than ever. I have met some amazing people in the last three years, also some not so amazing people, but the beauty of being a traveler is that it is easy to leave those ones in the rear view. I know I am a nomad, albeit a very stationary one.

WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT

So, three years on the road. Three years without a base or a solid routine. Three years with more ups and downs than an ADHD kid on a seesaw. Three of the undoubtedly best years of my life. Three years which are leading into even better years, something I didn’t think possible. For me the secret to not just enduring, but loving travel for three years and more, is listening to my mind and body when it tells me that it wants to stop. Three years on the road would be enough to make anyone scream for normality or routine, or question their choices.

umbrella

Luckily in our fist six months we figured out more or less how we wanted to spend our lives, and six months after that we had it down pat! Now, it is not about the travel, the travel adds a wonderful spice to the whole thing of course, but the meat and potatoes of it all is the freedom! Freedom to wake up and go to sleep where ever and whenever you want. I could not trade that in for anything. Unless life throws me some crazy curve ball that changes everything, some version of this lifestyle is me until the day I die. Which not coincidentally, would not seem as tragic as it would have three years ago.

BREAK IT DOWN

In three years I have done and seen more than I did in my previous thirty years. But more importantly, I have achieved on more consecutive days something I used to pray for in my previous life, something more precious than adventure, more enduring than happiness, and more rewarding than the biggest bank account in the world. More days than not, I am content with what my life has become.

dudes

In the last three years I have laughed and smiled uncountable times, every single day. I have visited and lived in more than a dozen countries. I have met and befriended people from all over the world, and learned invaluable lessons from each of them about who I am and my place in this world. I have seen some of man-kind’s greatest creations, and mother nature’s most jaw dropping scenes. I have soaked up the sun on beaches, hiked across mountains, visited the Tibetan foothills and wandered around ancient ruins. And not for nothing, I learned how to fly. I have created memories that will last a life time, and more importantly, created opportunities I cannot wait to get stuck into. Three years in my old life would pass by with hardly anything worth mentioning, a holiday here and there maybe. Three years in my new life? More precious memories than I can possibly hold on to. (Check out the Gallery at the end of this post).

WHERE LIFE LEADS YOU

I realize that everyone has their own path to follow. I realize that my views are skewed towards my own happiness and that I should think twice before preaching. But I often find myself telling those closest to me about how wonderful this life is, not because I want to brag, but because I hope it might spur them on to find their own version of freedom. Which is why I hope that those friends and acquaintances who I have met on the road – who shared similar experiences, who already took that first difficult leap into this lifestyle but are now second guessing it – that you have sucked every bit of joy out of this, that you are not returning to the things you left behind for a reason.

Each of us has our own paths to follow and as often as not we take a few steps down the wrong ones. The hard part is looking forward to where those paths might eventually lead and adjusting course accordingly. I only bring this up because I feel Sarah and I were lucky enough to make some choices early on which make staying the course easier than most. But even if we hadn’t, I like to think we would still be heading in this very same direction.

But enough about all of you. You are old enough and ugly enough to make your own choices without the preaching of a bearded fool who can’t say no to cats.

my-kitty

Three years. Today, tomorrow or the next day it will be three years we have been living this life, and many the things I have seen, the things I have felt and experienced have shown me life is more amazing than I ever imagined. The countries and cultures I have luxuriated in have made me giddy with joy and wonder. The late mornings and lazy weekday strolls along tropical beaches and mountain passes. The food I have shovelled through my pie hole and the endless amounts of time I have meandered my way through have been joyous.

Some things have been tough, some places have been horrible. But as I sit here now with the sun rising over the Colorado Rocky mountains, contemplating the endless opportunities which await us, I am eternally grateful for every choice I have made, good or bad, which led me to this point.

When you let go of fear, when you embrace the difficulties and make them your bitch, when you jump up from the mire and believe that the world is yours if only you want it enough, you will find a life of plenty waiting for you.

I was blind but now I see, Hallelujah and Amen! It’s my party and I’ll preach if I want to (you could preach too if it happened to you).

I wish you all a marvelous life whichever path you walk down. Below are just a few of the thousands of images of Sarah and I smiling, laughing, meeting people and seeing amazing things. A drop in the ocean of this last amazing three years, just to remind you (and us) how amazing life can be.

To follow us on this incredible journey, subscribe here. See you round 🙂

18 Comments
  • Kim
    Posted at 13:35h, 05 February Reply

    I think you’re actually missing something here. Just because your fellow nomads may give up their nomadic ways that doesn’t mean that they are going back to the life they had before or that they have any intention of doing that. For me, I’m tired of moving around so much, of having my friends and family so far away and of living without a community. I want people in my life again. Our goal is to create a home base that allows us a place to come home to while still having the freedom to travel when we want. It isn’t black and white, either you’re a nomad or you are living a dull existence in a cubicle, life is much more fluid than that.
    Kim recently posted…I’m Done TravelingMy Profile

  • Kim
    Posted at 13:39h, 05 February Reply

    One more thing!! I think you also assume that those nomads were escaping some miserable existence… and maybe you personally were unhappy before, that that wasn’t the case for me and it probably also isn’t the case for others. I had a wonderful life and it was hard to give it up. I gave it up because I wanted to travel and I wanted to write. I NEEDED to. Now, I have made a career as a writer. I’ve seen the world. I’ve done what I set out to do and I’m ready to move on with my life. I’m glad that you’ve found what you want to spend the rest of your life doing. So have I. I never assumed that traveling full-time for the rest of my life would be it.
    Kim recently posted…I’m Done TravelingMy Profile

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 14:40h, 05 February Reply

      Kim, I knew there would be some blow back from this post, but I also know that it will come from a defensive place which is unfortunate. Please read what I am saying again, but without thinking it is a critique of your life choices.

      Rather it is an observation and a request to question why those choices are being made, it is no different to asking people to question why they lead a normal 9-5 in the first place, which we have all done of our non-nomadic counterparts to much applause.

      The post is to ask yourself why, to be truthful with ourselves about what we want, to think about whether their are other options outside of constantly moving around or being stationary, and then if you still want to go home and settle down good on you. If it is what you yearn for more than anything else, then go for it!

      The post regarding myself is in fact not even about being a nomad as such, but about having found out that I like being in one place for a long time with sporadic bursts of travel, and more than anything about having the freedom to do the things I most want in life.

      There is nothing to get offended about here, and I am not making assumptions that everyone hated their lives. I am just asking, is that what you want, why did you leave in the first place, and most importantly, are you happy with where your choices will lead you? The post is to make people think, not to make people do what I think.

      It doesn’t matter if you are travelling, having babies or watching TV for 10 hours a day. I am just doing what my fellow nomads have been doing all along, asking you to think about what you really want from life, and then going for it.

  • SOS
    Posted at 14:16h, 05 February Reply

    Love this! Your enthusiasm for the pursuit of freedom is sooooo infectious! You have inspired me along the way and encouraged me to be brave and step out of my comfort zone many, many times. I hope you continue to live the life that makes you happiest… Forever! Sharing your adventures is a fun way to show others that it is possible to live now, to see the world, to be free. That wont teanslate the same way for all of us, but who says it has to? The cool thing is that your enthusiasm is always about people finding their best lives. You never push people to do things your way.
    “When you let go of fear, when you embrace the difficulties and make them your bitch, when you jump up from the mire and believe that the world is yours if only you want it enough, you will find a life of plenty waiting for you.” Fave quote!
    SOS recently posted…a place on the mapMy Profile

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 14:48h, 05 February Reply

      Muchos gracias SOS. Every one of us is capable of being inspirational in so many unexpected ways. It has been inspiring getting to know you and see your strength as you wander through all the trials that life has thrown at you. I know you will continue on your own path to recovery and happiness, because your just too damn tenacious not to! 🙂

  • Sarah Somewhere
    Posted at 15:35h, 05 February Reply

    Phew, what a journey! Yay us! I want to mark this day by acknowledging how far you have come. You are a self-made person and knowing what you have survived and how you have thrived with very little guidance and support is an ongoing inspiration to me. These have also been the best three years of my life and I feel like its just the beginning. Thanks for having the idea in the first place and for encouraging me to make the leap. I feel more me than I ever have and it has been both the challenges and accomplishments which have contributed to that. You are a blessing to all of us who have the privilege to know you. Also, YOU CAN FLY!!!! Xxx
    Sarah Somewhere recently posted…House Sitting at 9,000 ftMy Profile

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 17:22h, 05 February Reply

      Thanks Jane and thank you for coming along for the ride and making it the amazing journey it has turned into, for all your support when learning to fly which I don’t know if I could have done without you, and for making up for all my short comings by being who you are.

      Also, I want to mark this day with a pizza and several hours of “Friday Night Lights”. 🙂

  • Bruv
    Posted at 16:05h, 05 February Reply

    For what it’s worth, I’m very proud of you man, and Dad would be too. 😉

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 17:17h, 05 February Reply

      It’s worth a lot bruv, you’ll never know how much I appreciate yours, Taunee’s and mums support throughout this journey.
      booth_1@hotmail.com recently posted…Three years of freedom and not giving upMy Profile

      • Bruv
        Posted at 17:28h, 05 February Reply

        Glad to hear that, cos we’ve followed every step.

        On a separate note, I’m taking the sister unit camping this weekend, fishing then beach 4×4 tomorrow. I should have a few more grey hairs after that.

  • Pennie
    Posted at 18:30h, 05 February Reply

    Incredible post! You did a really beautiful job of describing your joy.

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 08:45h, 06 February Reply

      Thank you very much Pennie, everyday Sarah and I will bring up with each other how grateful we are to have created the life we have. It is nice to be able to share that with other people too.

  • Emily
    Posted at 19:58h, 05 February Reply

    So many people get caught up in life without knowing whether or not what they are doing is what they really want and the path they wish to experience. I am happy we took our year to travel, and with the perspective I’ve gained over the course of it, I feel I am able to better navigate through things to keep on the path I wish to take. Thanks for sharing and congrats you two!

    Also – loved the comment ‘underground cenote choking’ haha!
    Emily recently posted…Local Eats: SchoolMy Profile

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 08:47h, 06 February Reply

      Thank you Emily. That is great, there is nothing quite like new experiences to help give a new perspective on life. I am glad you are walking a path to your happiness!

      Also, my sister hates that choking picture 🙂

  • Rhonda
    Posted at 14:36h, 19 February Reply

    Oh gosh Tyrhone.. just caught up with your blog and OMG>.. I have been asking myself the same questions!!! We, who as you know,are currently feeling desperate to, once again, gain FREEDOM and the gift of TIME, and the adventure of new places and new things, are also baffled by the reasons people might want to lose that. I do believe that many only plan on going traveling for a set amount of time and always knew they’d be back, while others of us truly discover our REAL selves while out and about in the world. The story of your boss is heartbreaking.. how terrible that, even if stuck in the 9-5, anything is so desperate that you would end your life. So very sad. Congrats for you and Sarah for still loving the path you’ve taken. We sure plan on joining you on that road soon and after leaving and coming back and preparing to leave again.. I know I will never again come back to the cubicle from which I write that comment. We may not continue to travel the world forever, but from now on we are determined to live our life on our terms!
    Rhonda recently posted…A SetbackMy Profile

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 13:07h, 21 February Reply

      Thanks Rhonda, I keep remembering your caravan truck thingy and just thinking of the adventures you guys will have in that, I think we’ll do the same thing at some point!

      It is as crazy to me now as it was before we left to go on this journey how much of our lives we give away to things we don’t want to do, and all the ways we manage to justify it to ourselves.

      It is sometimes hard to see beyond my own experiences, but all I know is that for the short time we have on this planet, I don’t want to waste another second of it doing things which don’t contribute to our happiness and fulfillment.

      I look forward to meeting you guys on the road, maybe we could take you out for a Mexican feast! 🙂

  • Tony Marles
    Posted at 00:19h, 09 March Reply

    Hi Tyrhone,

    I’ve been following your blog (and Sarahs) for about 2 years and have enjoyed all your posts and I must congratulate you first on following your dream and second for you inspirational writing style. You should write a book, you are very good at it! . We also have just started our world journey, leaving our lives in Australia with our 6 year old son and bought an RV to travel USA and Canada for the next 2 to 3 years, followed by South America, Europe , Asia and wherever else we land. We departed Brisbane in December 2014 and have really enjoyed our new lives so far!
    I also have keenly followed your paragliding blogs as I would love to try one day, as I have a ultra-light pilots licence and understand the freedom of flight. Maybe we will cross paths on our adventure. Good luck for all of your travels.

    • booth_1@hotmail.com
      Posted at 09:00h, 09 March Reply

      Thanks Tony and kudos on doing something truly sensational. I am not likely to ever have kids but if I did I have always said I would do exactly what you are doing and give him/her real world experiences. Good on ya mate!

      I wish more people lived life to the full like yourselves rather than floating through to the end. I am sure you are going to have some amazing experiences along the way, and your kid is truly blessed to have the opportunity to be a citizen of the world.

      I am planning on flying like crazy to get my experience up to a point where I can do tandems safely and confidently. So give it 6 months to a year and then come see us in Mexico, I’ll take up your whole family and if you like it might even be able to give you some training by then.

      Really good to hear such an inspirational story mate, keep living life to the full, because anything else is a waste!
      booth_1@hotmail.com recently posted…How to make a Blackhawk Gopro Chest packMy Profile

Post A Comment

CommentLuv badge