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“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.”
~J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
For the past 1.5 years, I paused my life as a nomad. I got a normal apartment in Albuquerque, New Mexico and stayed there most of the time going to school at The Ayurvedic Institute, studying, and working. The school was challenging enough that that is what I focused everything on. I barely traveled at all - only a little bit locally in between exams, in the summer, and once to Tokyo for a conference.
To be honest, I enjoyed the stability of it. I LOVED having an apartment. Everything exactly the way I liked it. Buying items in bulk for once. It was my safe haven, and I spent a lot of time there. I was going to graduate in June and deal with giving up my apartment then without a concrete plan in place.
But things changed FAST! Instead of going to Tokyo in March as originally planned, I went to spend my spring break in the San Francisco Bay Area. The lockdown was announced, and I somehow ended up in Grass Valley, California, where I was until a few weeks ago.
I dropped out of school as I was not happy with the online option and to save my business, had a friend pack up my apartment and put everything in storage, and went from there. Suddenly, without much warning, I was a nomad again.
Luckily, I’m used to life happening that way for me. The Grass Valley, CA area is incredible. I really feel lucky to have spent the quarantine time there with so much nature around me.
I feel very lucky to be a nomad again - back to only 1 suitcase and a backpack, with no attachments. I’m free to go anywhere in the world where it is safe (of course there is the passport issue, but I think travel will be possible with restrictions in the near future).
Of course, it is also a very dangerous time to be a nomad. At least when you have a home, you can stock up on food and know you can stay there and be safe. You have a local network. But traveling has no such guarantees. At any time where-ever you are can have a lockdown. AirBNB owners might not want you there. Local rules can change. Locals might not be happy you’re there.
It is a time more than ever to rely on friends around the world for help. I feel very lucky that I do have friends I can travel to who can help me in this tough time the world is going through. I’ll be blogging about my experience of being a nomad during these times.
Stay safe you all wherever you are!