On 23rd of November 2009 I boarded a plane in Copenhagen bound for Bangkok. I had spent the previous 4 months selling my flat, my furniture and just about everything I owned. My possessions were boiled down to two (heavy) bags and some personal items in storage. I had reset my life and was equally excited and nervous as the plane left the ground. Nothing could have prepared me for the adventures and roller coaster ride ahead. In most people’s mind including my own, this was rather insane. But I needed to do it, I wanted to start over and learn about the world. Learn I did and it lot of times it was learning by failing! I certainly never thought I would make it through five years of nomadism but here we are, fifth anniversary, Five Trips Around the Sun.
It has been a while since I wrote about trips Three and Four around the sun. You might say I am a bit behind. When I realised I was behind, I then wanted to post this 5 year anniversary post on the actual day (23rd of Nov) of the anniversary – but on the 24th I realised I missed that deadline too (and the TARDIS is still broke so no going back in time). You might say I am slightly distraught. In the last almost 1.5 year more things happened than in the first 4 years combined, heck, almost more than my entire life up to that point. Several times I have attemped to write about the events, but failed. You might say I have been slightly overwhelmed. Actually I would not mind it if year six around the sun was slightly less eventful, just slightly. So, pardon the mess, pour yourself a cuppa (spike it!) and jump into this random stream-of-conciousness bullet list of a few of the wonderful and mad and magic year five around the sun.
- Finding love. Charlene, my best friend, my soul mate through several years, became my girlfriend 1.5 years ago. I probably was the last in the universe to figure out what was going on. You might say I am a bit slow. But I get there in the end! It is by far the best thing that has ever happened in my life. On some days, when I am being particularly stupid, it is also one of the difficult things to figure out. I have so much to learn. You might say I am a bit daft. But nothing compares to this kind of magic. It is like a special ray of light that shines into the mind and heart forever. My love, my soul mate, my best friend, my creative and business partner – all in one. Magic really can happen and it did! I am the luckiest and happiest boy in the universe. Whatever adventures, ups and downs lies ahead, every second is brighter because of her. She makes me want to be a better person and awesome every day, and she puts up with me when I am grumpy and pathetic (happens a fair bit!). Yes, I really am the luckiest time traveler.
- Tragedy. In October 2013, Charlene’s father was diagnosed with aggressive late stage stomach cancer. We rushed from Mexico to Singapore, and I am forever grateful that we managed to get there in time while Charlene’s father was still conciousness – and I got to meet him and say hello. This will always mean a lot to me. Time was cut cruely short and he unfortunately lost conciousness the day after we arrived during surgery and died 3 days later. It happened so incredibly fast and it just really hammered home that there is no time like the present. Chase those dreams, live, love, who knows who long we all have left.I stayed in Singapore a combined 5.5 months with Charlene and her mother, supporting each other through the tough time that followed. Every day I needed to dig deep to find extra love, grace, patience, humour and strength within myself to support Charlene and her mother. As hard as it all was, there were also lots of laughter and wonderful friendships being formed with Charlene’s friends and family. I am grateful Charlene and her mother let me be part of this tough time, it really means a lot to me.
- Eating truckloads of rice in Singapore. Seriously, I put away an unbelievable amount of chicken rice during 6 months, and I am probably the #1 customer at our local chicken rice stall in Tampines, Singapore. Hello 4 dollars is my name, chicken rice is my game.
- Making websites with Coffee and Magic. We – Charlene and I – also make websites! In Singapore, back in november 2013, we figured we might as well try and do this thing, make websites, we had been talking about it and see what ripples in the fabric of space we could make. Our company just had it’s 1 year anniversary and we launched 22 sites in this first year. I am extremely thrilled and excited about this. Coffee and Magic forever!
- Global Gypsy Travel Media. We are entrepreneurs! Charlene and I, together with my friend Michael Birkmose, started our own travel stock company. We just launched it in November 2014 and have many plans for expanding it. Already we have more than 800 images from 24 countries online. I am very stoked about this venture, read more here.
- Shooting music. During 2013 and 2014, a dream came true as my love for music and photography combined into a journey into music photography. It really boggles the mind that it took my so long to combine my interest of music and photography. You might say I am a bit slow – but I get there in the end. The summers of 2013 and 2014 were both magic and hectic on this front, and I am thrilled about this new direction and the jobs to come around the world.
- Movie star (cough). Somehow I ended up in a Fuji promo movie, a TV talkshow, and the movie Beyond. For someone who was so shy as a kid I could hardly speak a word to strangers, this is a rather funny turn of events. Turns out I actually enjoy being in front of the lens. Probably a bit too much actually. And there’s more to come, be afraid, be very afraid (turn off your telly!)
- Traveling to Morocco. It had been high on my list for so long. Many of my friends had been. Finally, I made it there. And nothing went as planned, nothing was as expected. Life on the road is full of surprises and my time in Morocco was a good example. Most things in life rarely go as planned or expected and that is generally a good thing. But in in the midst of it, I will never learn, I will still get angry at the universe for not doing what I want it to do and bending to my will.
- I have a new camera and I co-hosted a Fuji day! I got a Fuji X-T1 on the same day Charlene and I co-hosted a Fuji Ambassador day on a cold March day in Copenhagen. Everyone braved the cold during our street photography workshop though and we had a fantastic day. Thanks so much Fuji Nordic!
- I had my 902nd birthday in Singapore, and it was truly epic, thanks Charlene! And thanks Singapore for the laser show at Marina Bay, I appreciate it.
- Finally, we have been Mad and Magic Raving part 3 over the past 3 months traveling around the USA and it has been phenomenal. Check the blog for the latest pictures, there are still many to come.The freedom, the wide open space is just what the doctor ordered after many, many months of occassionally very stressful times in Singapore, Australia and Copenhagen. I even got my first tattoo.
A trip down memory lane
Pour yourself another cuppa (better spike it again!) and sit back, as the grumpy old time-traveler here is about to pull out the slide projector and subject you to years of entertainment! There are thousands and thousands of pictures from the past five years, I tried to keep it to a short and funny group of images. Still, if you make it to the end, you get a prize.
To infinity and beyond
If you made it this far, I am quite impressed! If you really cannot fall asleep, then there are more nomad tales in my Featured Stories.
There are more suns to chase and time-traveling and gypsy living to be done. See you out there on the road!
“Still round the corner there may wait a new road or a secret gate” – Tolkien
“I am and always will be the optimist, the hoper of far-flung hopes and the dreamer of improbable dreams.” – Doctor Who