We’re back in Belgium, as you all know. Our year around the world ended abruptly after ‘only’ 4,5 months. So, what are our plans now?
Back in Belgium. What now?
As you could read in a previous post, we had to end our travels to return to Belgium because of the Coronavirus. We quickly realised it would take a while before our world would recover from (or adjust to) this situation. Even before we left New Zealand, we knew we wouldn’t be travelling anytime soon. Back then, we were still optimistic and hoped to be able to travel again in September.
However, after being in quarantine for almost two months (I keep a quarantine diary), we know that it will take longer. At the moment, we have the luck to be able to stay in an appartment from family members – until further notice.
So, how are we?
It sucks when you arrange everything to take a year off (I think as most people realise, it is not a very easy thing to do or decision to make) and to go live your dream. It was a harsh ending and it’s hard to come back home a long time before you planned it, with literally nothing ahead of you. No job. No place to stay. No agenda. Nothing.
However, even though it’s often not easy, we definitely realise how lucky we are. We were able to return home and have a safe place to stay during this pandemic. We have a roof above our heads, some savings, food and the luxuries of books and internet; enough entertainment. I, myself, never had a problem with finding stuff to do. Being bored isn’t in my dictionnary.
A lot of people don’t have the easy luxury of staying home for a long time. We all know it, but travelling the world made me see that even better. I think about the tuk tuk driver in Cambodia who mostly earns his income through tourists. I know people in Nepal and follow the situation there because (it’s close to my heart) and the virus has serious consequences. Day labourers do not have work anymore and they don’t have the luxury of savings. People are literally starving. Luckily there are a lot of initiatives to help people… but there are definitely people suffering.
To travel? Or not to travel?
Soooo, travelling won’t be possible anytime soon, so what are our plans? Since we don’t want to spend our savings waiting until the world gets better, we decided to stay in Belgium for a year at least. I was planning on returning to my job as a barista and coffee lover after our year away anyways; now I’m doing it sooner than planned. Nothing’s too sure yet – I mean, Corona. However, we did find a new place to stay in Ghent and we’ll move there in June. Why a year? Because than we can actually commit to the jobs we choose, we can find a nice place to rent and we will be (almost) sure that we can travel again.
I was looking forward to pick up my life again in Belgium after our year of travelling, but if I’m honest, the early return made my initial excitement disappear. I hope to find the joy in being home again and I’m sure that will be easier if I’m actually allowed to see my friends in real life!
A year. Yes. Why? Simple: I can’t give up on my dream yet. This worldtrip has been my dream for as long as I can remember and even though 4,5 months of travelling is an amazing time to be away already – it is a bit over 1/3rd of what we planned. I’m just not finished. I can’t not continue this.
Sooooo…. we will live in Belgium for a year (at least – you never know how everything will develop) and then we will continue our year around the world. We want to finish walking the Te Araroa, we want to continue the travel route we sort off planned (lots of room for spontaneous decisions). We asked ourselves a lot of questions about this, because it’s not practical at all. We are going to have to make sure we free up another hug part of our life in Belgium to hit the road again. But not doing it is simply not an option.
So, there you go, that’s what we’ll do! It took lots of talking and thinking and deciding, but here it is! I’m relieved to know again how we’ll live the coming months. I’m happy to have a plan again.
It’s the end of our year around the world.
But I’m so happy I can add these little words: for now.
I know Corona changed a lot of things for soooo many people. Twenty twenty looks different than planned for everyone around this world. We are all in this together. How are you doing? I’m always happy to talk, so don’t be afraid to contact me!
Lots of love,