Watching the lightning bugs flicker outside the window I realised that after 8-months on the road we had only 8-nights left before we would board a plane and head for England and home. Except this time it is different because our ‘home’ is no longer ours to return to, it is rented and will remain so almost indefinitely.
Thus our return is not one of resuming the life that was left behind in November 2014 but of continuing to travel, albeit in our mother country for a while. And this, we hope, will be a satisfactory continuation. Doubtless there will be moments and periods of unease and dislocation, that is to be expected after so long away. Hopefully there will be more reconnection and stabilisation as we visit family and friends on a mini-reunion tour. Affairs can be put in order, modifications made to our future travel ‘modus operandi’, and we can plan for what we are calling Phase II of ‘The Big Shake Up’ that began on January 1st 2014.
Sitting here writing this on a shaky Greyhound bus heading for New York City we are both agreed on one thing, our vagabond souls have not yet had enough and we are far from ready to quit travelling. It feels as though we have really hit our stride now, the early wrinkles have been well and truly ironed out and we have settled into a very steady and comfortable groove. Creating a mutually complementary environment for both of us to travel and live in has taken some work but, during what has not always been easy travelling, it has paid off hugely. We need to be able to spend a lot of time together, to have copious reserves of energy, patience and compassion for each other and the wider world. Travelling is now what we DO! Without preconception or prejudice we try to remain as open to every opportunity or experience that puts itself in our path. We have made people a major priority (the places will always be there) and that has reaped many rewards. Trying not to assume overmuch and keep curiosity to the fore we have made a point of enquiring into anything and everything that piques our interest. Writing and blogging has also focused our attention onto specific issues and heightened our awareness of much we knew only superficially. Comments from other bloggers and friends has been greatly encouraging and has opened up many new avenues of communication and exploration.
So, as Phase I draws to a close and we head back to England to ‘refuel’ we are very happy with progress to date. There is more fine-tuning to come and many more people and places to encounter. So, along with a small amount of sadness at the closing of a chapter comes enormous excitement at the prospect of beginning another.
To everyone we met during the last 8-months: amen, right on, shalom, salaam, hallelujah, namaste!