Nomad Life: 30 Days on the Road


It's been a month since I said goodbye to London for a 6-week journey that has taken me to opposite sides of the world.

My first stop was New York City, a place I called home for 13 years. I stayed with a friend in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn, a short walk from Brooklyn Bridge Park and its view of the cityscape of Manhattan. It was as close to going home can be for me, and I cherished the two weeks.

From there, I hopped a plane to Bali, Indonesia, where I've been since the beginning of the month. I'm now based in Ubud, working from a coworking space with other nomads, glued to a laptop for the day, wired to wifi to stay connected to the world.

Each morning, I write the morning pages—three pages of stream of consciousness written by hand in my journal. It's been close to daily practice since I completed The Artist's Way at the end of last year. As early as possible, I find my notebook and my pen and write. It's become an essential part of my day.

I've picked up a few of slim notebooks at grocery stores and stationery shops. When the pages are full, I drop them in my bag to carry with me back to London, where I'll store them with the other notebooks I've been faithfully completing.

I rarely decide what I'll write before I begin. True to the spirit of a stream of consciousness exercise, I typically just start. I do my best to put pen to paper before the thoughts come in. When they do arrive, they appear in short bursts. Frustration, joy, boredom, contentment, curiosity, motivation, wistfulness, appreciation. All the emotions show up on the page, one after the other, not caring who has left and who will follow.

This morning was different, and I woke up knowing what I wanted to write down. I would reflect on a month on the road. When my pen hit the paper, I began writing something else, but I brought my attention back. I ended up listing out, in no particular order with no specific hierarchy, a list of things I've done since beginning this journey.

I feel in touch with a version of myself I don't want to lose, and I'm clinging to her, hoping that I can keep her with me when I return to London, something I hesitate to even think about today in the humid glow of a tropical island twelve thousand four hundred and fifty-five kilometres away from where I'll land once summer has arrived.

Thursday 13 June 2019

Over the past few weeks, I have slept well, been very relaxed, made some art, got back on social media, starting exercising, have gotten a little tan, eaten well, have probably lost a little weight. found an art studio, met new people, joined a coworking space, reconnected with old friends, experienced synchronicity, met someone from my postcode in London staying next door at the villa, met another artist and coach at a cafe, got a massage, started budgeting my cash more mindfully, started dreaming again, did a massive unsubscribe to newsletters and got to inbox zero, met a few working artists who inspired me, read a real book (paper, not Kindle), gave that book away, started reading another book, shopped for art supplies, got the Golden primary acrylic tubes I had been thinking about, bought for sarongs, visited art museums in NYC and Ubud and was massively inspired, walked around Brooklyn, went to the laundromat, ate pizza in Bali, ate vegan food, went to the Whitney Biennial, went to Chelsea galleries, went to Dia:Beacon and had a lovely day out of NYC, thought about moving back to New York, went to Williamsburg and was a little shocked by how the neeighnourhood has changed since I was ther last time, saw an ex-boyfriend and went on an emotional journey to the past, wrote my morning pages every day.