As I’ve mentioned a few times (ahem – I’ll stop talking about it soon I promise) Charlie and I spent a month in America back in June with our trusty rental camper van Woody and California at our feet. It was everything I’d dreamed of and more. Just being able to press pause on everyday life was hugely therapeutic. We had no worries, no deadlines, no emails, just the road. It gave me an opportunity to reflect and discover what it is in life that I appreciate, what makes me happy. What makes me feel good and what doesn’t make me feel good. Bust tyres in the middle of LA do NOT make me feel good.
I kept a journal whilst we were on our travels, and each night I kept a diary of what we’d been up to, memorable moments and a few thoughts that had crossed my mind. Today, I thought I’d share with you some of these thoughts.
Material Goods Mean Little
Sure, that Stella Mccartney handbag I bought made me feel great, but only temporarily. It was a short lasting high and whilst I am getting great use out of said bag, it won’t bring me half as much joy as real life experiences. I had the bare essentials on our road trip, I didn’t have a full makeup bag and I lived out of one suitcase for over 4 weeks. Did I miss all of my worldy possessions? No, not really. Did I miss my weekly Asos splurges? Nope. It proved to me that these simply fill a gap. If I were a full time traveller I’m almost certain Asos would become a distant memory. I just didn’t care for shopping when I was exploring. It also inspired my recent clear-out where I discarded around 70% of my possessions (side note – they were donated).
The Destination Always Comes To Soon
My favourite part of our road trip was the actual driving, which came as quite a surprise to me. I enjoyed blasting our favourite music in the van (a little Bruce Springsteen to suit the mood) with my feet up and letting
my driver Charlie drive us to our next destination. I enjoyed not having a clue where we were, stopping off at questionable service stations and filling up on gas as well as a giant diet coke. I loved this sense of adventure and it was most definitely one of my favourite aspects of the whole trip. Aside from driving through the Mojave desert in 45 degree heat with a warning light on the van, that wasn’t quite so cute. It’s all part of the experience though eh?
I Need A Dog
Not quite so thought provoking but the one recurring thought I had on this whole trip was how much I need a dog in my life again. We spent a lot of time in National Parks and cities that were overrun with adorable four legged friends. San Diego in particular was home to many a cool pup. I had an overwhelming urge to parent one as soon as possible, which is what I suppose some women feel like with babies. I just want the dog.
I Almost Feel Grown Up
One day I’m freaking out that I’m not 19 anymore and the next me and Charlie are discussing buying our own camper van and talking mortgages over the campfire. Yikes. This trip made me realise that I have in fact progressed in life a little more than I sometimes give myself credit for. I have an ‘adult’ job, I managed to save up for my dream California holiday, I didn’t go into debt doing so, I didn’t panic in any sketchy situations (mostly mechanical issues) and I found a new love for the outdoors. Sign me up to Saga now lads. I suddenly felt like an adult couple when we were walking around, especially when families with teenagers would pitch up next to us at the campsite. It was a reminder that I am in fact an adult on my own little journey and not a kid anymore. Scary stuff.
Life Is Fun Without Wifi
This links to my recent post about being addicted to my phone, and it’s certainly something I recognised whilst we were away. After desperately running around the campsite for a spot of Wifi in Yosemite, I realised that actually for the next four days I was not going to be able to Instagram or Tweet. Quelle Horreur. At first I was a bit annoyed and then I realised how ridiculous I was being. In one of the most beautiful places in the world, why would I need wifi anyway? We spent our days hiking around the park, our evenings would consist of stocking up on a few supplies from the nearest shop and heading back to the campsite for a spot of tennis followed by a game of scrabble. It was so simple but so perfect.
So there we have it, a little insight into my road trip brain and journal. I’m so glad I decided to keep a note of all our daily adventures and there are tonnes of memories we can look back on and laugh at. I just wish I could do it all over again…2019….watch this space.