We have been wrestling a little with our intro to the nomadic lifestyle. It’s not an easy transition and the temptation is to start guns blazing especially when you’ve been dreaming of it for the best part of a year. We weren’t comfortable in our nomad skin yet but I think we’re back on the right track. We’ve ripped our plans apart and we’re starting again from scratch with a new “un-plan”.
The Old Plan
I had a grand plan for our first year of nomadic travel. Being stuck in Christchurch so long gave me ample time to formulate and fantasise about where we should go, what we should do and routes that might take us around the world. I think I went through about four different versions of “The Plan” but ultimately we had decided to spend six months in Australia leaving in December and taking a two month jaunt through thus unexplored parts of Asia (The Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau) and then fly to Canada for the ski season. Australia would give us time to finish up some work projects, travel around and see family & friends. Asia would satisfy my need for noodles and send us to a few countries neither of had been to. Canada would give Lee his much needed dose of snowboarding. We were committed to that plan. We were so committed we’d bought a snowboard bag with us and all our winter gear.
Trashing the Plan
But, after a couple of months in Australia, we were restless. I was itching to get going. I wanted travel and Australia just felt too similar to New Zealand. Not nearly exotic enough. Australia was also proving too expensive. We made the decision to get out and go. We binned the plan, sent the snowboards back to New Zealand and started looking for cheap flights to Asia.
The New “Un-Plan”
The new plan is more of an un-plan. We’re taking things one step at a time. We made our way to Thailand via Singapore and then we’ll decide what happens from there. We come prepared though, with double entry 60-day visas to Thailand. So we can stay for some time… if we choose. That’s the key. We need to decide as we go. That’s it. The new plan is no plan…. but with a bit of good “planning” to back it up. I *think* we’re savvy enough travellers to wing it without getting stuck by visa constraints or route problems.
We’re in Asia. We’ll travel around Asia for a bit but I’m not sure where we’ll go or when that will be. It sounds flakey but it feels right. And sometimes travel is just about going with your gut. Unplanning at it’s finest.
Why Planning Just Isn’t Working for Us Anymore
I’ve discovered that my personality type just isn’t suited to having a plan. I’m much more comfortable in “go with the flow” situations. Rigidity doesn’t rule me. Flexibility is what I crave. The nomadic life will suit this but I have to let go of the vacation mind-set. Planning out a trip when it’s two months and under works. I think that’s actually a good thing. Two months isn’t a long time to commit to a plan and stick to it. But when you’re living on the road or on an extended RTW trip it feels much better not to be locked into certain plans. Our feelings about what we were doing changed around the two month point but luckily we weren’t locked into any expensive flights or accommodations and we could simply change our minds.
What do you think about our “un-plan”? Would you be able to travel that way? Are you a planner? Or do you prefer to go with the flow?