If 2014 was the year of letting go, then 2015 has got to be all about moving the hell on.
It's true what they say, a lot can happen in a year. In fact, last Tuesday, I met up with my Sicilian friends, who happened to be in town for the New Year celebrations. I hadn't seen them since I last left Sicily, which feels like only months ago, but when we worked it out, it has actually been over a year! Sometimes I honestly can't believe how much time just seems to fly right by!
Looking back, it's safe to say that 2014 was certainly a nomadic year; in January, I was back in Kent with mère and Mr Pig, after taking a break for the holidays. With the festivities over, I traveled up to Reading for the month, in order to help out a friend, who was packing up to move to Mexico. Come February, I finally returned to my travels, heading back out to Italy, visiting Pisa, Florence, Venice, Verona and Milan and happily making friends and experiencing a fair few disastrous love affairs along the way, before I ultimately left again to return to France. I spent a few days playing chess down in Nice, took a short trip to Monaco with a Chilean friend I'd made and then eventually headed back over to Chabanais for a fortnight, to debrief with friends.
By March I found myself living in the idyllic Dordogne, volunteering at a horse sanctuary, but alas, after two months, the country calm just wasn't enough to satisfy my wandering heart and after getting the call of the wild, I once again flitted back off to Paris for a few nights at the end of April, where I heavily indulged my romanticism, before flying through Stockholm and ending up in Berlin. After one gloriously sunny month of cycling and cake eating, I returned to Rome again in June, this time for work and after four scorchingly hot weeks there, flew back to Berlin, determined to finally lay down some permanent roots.
It certainly wasn't easy and there were some really intense highs and lows along the way. In actuality, it was one of those exact low points that made me pack up again, to return to England for a few weeks, at the beginning of October. I spent fourteen days back in Kent, soaking up the company of my favourite people, but when it came time to go home, I just knew I wasn't ready to yet and so, I headed back to France instead, to stay with my friends over in Chabanais. With a book to finish writing at the time, I stowed myself away in the country for a full month, before I finally made the journey back to Berlin. Finally, after twelve months of flights, trains, car journeys, bag packing and bed hopping, I thankfully managed to end the year in Berlin, in my own space, bag fully unpacked.
In all honesty though, over the course of 2014, I spent a lot of time reminiscing about my home by the English coast and all the things I'd had to let go of, both materially and emotionally. The freedom, fluidity and sometimes the brutality of the year, had forced me to truly rediscover my sense of self, overcome a lot of my fears and find my voice but now that journey is over and it's the beginning of a new one. Having dealt with all that 2014 had to offer, I think it's time to make a fresh start and create something altogether new.
I left England eighteen months ago and in my mind, I thought I would go backpacking for a year and eventually end up living in Paris, married, with child, running my vegan eatery and writing books. Never for one moment, would I have imagined that I would be sat here, living in Berlin, leading the kind of life I lead. Which I think just goes to show, that ultimately, you can have a plan, but life might just take you on a detour to get there, or occasionally it might just reroute you to somewhere better. So whilst my heart still occasionally beats for that Parisian dream, for now, I'm just gonna give myself over to whatever this year brings. Embrace it, enjoy it and move the hell on.
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