Tuesday, 28 June 2016

First Stop: Scotland - Exploring Home

When you meet new people one of the often discussed topics is what countries you have visited. Recently I spent some time thinking about this and realised that I am very lucky to have had the opportunity to visit a few. Here's the list to date:

  • Ireland 
  • France 
  • Germany 
  • Spain 
  • Italy 
  • Netherlands 
  • Cape Verde 
  • Lanzarote (technically part of Spain but I'm going to count it anyway) 
  • United States of America (New York, Washington DC, Indiana, Lake Michigan) 
  • Greece 
  • Turkey 
  • Egypt 
  • Cyprus 
  • Pakistan 
  •  (And if you count the UK - Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland) 
However, what I've realised is that this is only a very small percentage of the 195/196 countries in the world. Even then I've only been to a very small part of these countries (maybe only 1 city for some of them). There is just so much to see and life, as they say, is short!

So I ask myself - how can I see more of the world now? The answer - JFDI (Just F**king Do It)!

Of course I have doubts, concerns and a lot of unanswered questions. Where will I get the money? How will I pay rent and bills at home? Where will I stay? What if I get ill in a foreign country where I don't speak the language and the available healthcare is poor or even non-existent? Etc, etc, etc.

I can answer the first of those. I have been working on my own business for the last 6 months which allows me to work from anywhere in the world as long as I have a laptop and access to the internet. It's still early days and I haven't yet broken even but I'm definitely seeing success and it's bringing in enough that I can afford to spend some of it on other things. As for rent and bills, well if I don't own or rent a home while I'm travelling then these are more or less non-existent. Thankfully I have a mother who has agreed to store a few of my possessions while I'm away. The other questions... well I'll work those out as I go along!

Which leaves me with another question: how do I decide where to start? I could close my eyes, open an atlas and see where my finger lands. Another, longer winded thought goes like this - I was born in Glasgow in 1985 with a mother from the Isle of Mull and a father from Milngavie near Glasgow. I was brought up mostly on the Isle of Mull and, after leaving school, lived for 8 years in Edinburgh. For the last 6 years I've lived in England - first Manchester, then Cambridge and more recently London. When I look at a map of Scotland I realise that I have in fact seen so little of my own country.

 So, first stop: Scotland - exploring home!

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