Three years living as Nomads

by | May 3, 2019 | Blogs, Japan, Overland, Reflections, Stories

Wow…, 3 years already! How do we summarize more than 1,100 days of living on the road, meeting people, working on new projects, … or should I just say: LIVING?

Not an easy job! The way we tried to write this post illustrates our current state of mind quite well… so here goes.. VERSION 5! (really, not joking…)😂

It has been 3 years now since we CHOSE ULTIMATE FREEDOM: we stopped the rent of our house, finished our work projects in the Netherlands and set off on an adventure into the unknown for the second time! Our bus is our tiny home on wheels and together we enriched our view on this beautiful world. We drove crazy 4x4 roads in the most beautiful landscapes, got open heartedly invited to share food and good times with families around the world, had some scary experiences that stayed with us for a while and encountered closed borders and blocked routes that made us drastically change our plans.

After the first 1,5 year it became clear that this overland trip evolved into a new lifestyle: we moved from our bus in Kyrgyzstan to downtown Philadelphia (USA), because Roderick had a consultancy project for two months. We also started working together as a Visual Storytelling duo and had our first projects as a duo in India, Bangladesh and Myanmar – and they even made a book out of our work! 😮🙂🙏

The nomadic lifestyle really BECAME OUR LIFE, with all the highs and lows that are part of it. We are explorers, searchers, and that is what makes us travel. We both feel alive when we experience new things. But the downside of it is that we question and optimize a lot: Do we make the right choices? Or we going in the right direction? (Probably you have heard us talking about this before, see circumbendibus.org/freedom-and-the-other-side-of-the-coin/)

The “funny” thing is… When you choose ultimate freedom, in every moment there is a choice: Where are we going to sleep tonight? Do we need to repair our car here or better there? Are we going to do this today or tomorrow? But if we do this, that means we ….. 😖And on top of that the long-term life choices also occupy our minds: Do we still have the urge to explore more of this world in the way we are doing now? What is next?

More and more we realize that what is really bothering us, is our overactive mind. The mind wants to find a solution for everything, keeps on optimizing. Even though we know our minds can’t (always) find THE answer. The last months in winter in Japan, we have been almost 24/7 together in a bus of about 6 m2. A great opportunity for our analytical minds to spiral together into ONE BIG EXPLOSION OF THOUGHTS AND CONSIDERATIONS.😵

When people ask what is the most difficult part of overlanding for us, this is not the answer they would expect and it is even harder to explain. But after 3 years of living a nomadic life, for us having all these choices must be it. Sometimes we think that by choosing the ultimate freedom, we chose to train for the Olympics for People Struggling with Analytical Minds, haha. During “real” difficult situations: the desperate race against the clock to reach a border in Kazakhstan, getting stuck in a swamp in Azerbaijan, driving through dangerous areas in Pakistan, the situations people expect us to answer, we are focused, we are a team and are really in the moment.

But you can’t be in real adventure all the time.. So to give our overactive minds some rest, we have the feeling we have to SLOW DOWN more and more. Super friendly and beautiful Japan is a great place for that! We force ourselves to stay at one place for at least two nights now, which is already quite a challenge with our nomadic genes. But we realize it gives us peace of mind, or better.. SPACE FOR OUR HEARTS! ❤️

It was great to experience real winter in Japan, but at the moment we are very happy that summer is knocking on our door. When we park our bus at a lonely beach, that after a few days becomes our garden, where we both have our own routines, where we start to know some neighbors, we can finally say: WE FEEL AT HOME. Even for a nomad it is important to stay at one place for a while sometimes!

Slowly we start to daydream and feel instead of think about future plans again!❤️

🙏THANK YOU FOR JOINING OUR ADVENTURES THE LAST 3 YEARS!🙏

Travelling can sometimes be a bit lonely or even feel purposeless. So that is why it means a lot to us that we can share our experiences, thoughts and even doubts with you.. at the moment there are 3.350 people like you that follow our Facebook page! Thanks a lot for joining our adventures – your comments and support bring a smile to our face!! ❤️