Year in Review: Lockdowns, Staycations & Life Lessons

New Zealand West Coast sunset

2020 was the year we finally slowed down after five full years of travelling fulltime. It was also the year we found out we were not indestructible and learnt some hard life lessons! If you have followed our journey, you may have heard us talking about living every year as if it were the last year of freedom or adventure. We often talk about snatching all of life’s offerings and cherishing every moment. Also, you may have heard 2019 threw a few buckets of sand in our face. However, it was not until I broke my ankle four weeks ago, that I learnt the true meaning of the words “slow down”.

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Hello from Lockdown in New Zealand


Though I have always been the type of person who reads about doomsday prepping, I could not have imagined the unprecedented events that have occurred recently. Not in my lifetime. Following the pandemic declaration on 13th March, I saw fear, shock and confusion. Plus there was grief and despair for the life we all knew. And then there was the crazy panic buying, which seemed the only way people found some control in an out of control situation. And as I write this, there have been 3.5 million confirmed cases worldwide of the Covid-19 virus, and 247,000 lives lost. These last six weeks spent in lockdown now seem like the new normal. And the question I most want to know is, “How will we all mentally get through this, and how will we move forward?”

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Our Untold Story & Why You Should Cherish Every Moment

Our_Untold_Story_&_Why_You_Should_Cherish_ Every_Moment

Wow! The proverbial clock has been ticking, and the intense months came and went. In the last seven months, so much has happened. It increased to a crescendo with the entire world being affected when COVID-19 spread and became a pandemic. But this story doesn’t start there. This story concerns what happened to us before COVID-19 even existed. Read on for our untold story, & why you should cherish every moment.

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Our Travels in Laos – A Return Road Trip 20 years on


Laos had recently opened its doors to tourism. When we there in 1999 it started a marketing campaign ‘Visit Laos Year 2000’ to welcome more visitors to travel to Laos. It was a country considered off the beaten track even by the most intrepid backpackers. We saw striking landscapes, architecture and temples. But best of all was the opportunity to meet genuine people.

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About Travelling – a reflection piece on 5 years of full time travel


It has been five years since I left my job and began full time travel. And today I leave my home I have lived in for the last three months. I go with mixed feelings as I am happy here. I’ve enjoyed living on a tropical island and becoming a part of local life. I don’t want to leave yet, but it’s time to create new adventures. And to see somewhere new. But mostly, the Thai visa has run out!

Reflections on the Travel Bug

Meanwhile, I reflect on my first overseas road trip. The epic 22 state road trip in North America was an exciting place for two teenage Australian girls. My sister and I rushed from city to city to see as much as we could in 3 months.

After that, the travel bug bit hard and I never stopped travelling. First I travelled solo across Europe and the Middle East. And later, in Asia, where I met my partner and travel companion.

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Are you standing in the way of living your dream life?


After 5 incredible months camping in the New Zealand bush, the summer sun disappeared, and the weather came in.
Have you ever been in a tent while it rained all night?
The pitter-patter on the roof is like a meditative trance.
The tent lived up to its waterproof claims!

Camping and trekking in the New Zealand wilderness is one of the safest places on Earth. There are no scary scorpions, no snakes, no poisonous spiders, no wolves, no bears, no crocodiles or other man-eating animals. The scariest thing out there is you!

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The Fruit Picking Dream – Picking, Packing, and Pruning my way across Australia


Even before I had disembarked the plane, I had heard you could earn bucket loads of money doing harvest work. So I ended up working my way from Sydney all around Australia. From the chilly mornings pruning grape vines in the Hunter Valley to the warm, refreshing sea and panoramic, tropical vistas in Queensland picking tomatoes. All with the aim of achieving the fruit picking dream.

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Bulgaria – Twenty years later


The start of my Bulgarian story began twenty years ago. It started with a dirt cheap budget saving airfare from Sydney to Greece. I was a happy teenager on my way to Party on the Greek Islands.

The cost was as cheap as it gets for a 30-hour flight from Sydney, Australia. But, in return, I was to stay in no man’s land – Sofia, Bulgaria for two days. I was not interested in churches and historic buildings. Don’t judge me; I was a teenager and, I just needed to get to the promised backpacker party scene on Santorini Island, Greece.

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