With the inauspicious end to 2016.... a year that we would rather delete from our calendar..... and the dawn of 2017, we are in the last couple of weeks of 'shutting up shop' and saying 'au-revoir' to our experiment with the American Dream. Nostalgically, we wonder if we will ever be back for good and if so, how different the country we know as home, will appear when we return. For both of us, the USA is where we have spent most of our adult lives and California has truly captured our hearts. We have always been so happy to say we belong to LaLaLand. But for now, it is back on the road again, to our nomadic existence and the boundless excitement of the world beyond.
|Big Sur, 2 January 2017|
For those of you who know us, our decision to exit 'stage-right' from what we now call 'Trumpistan' will not come as a surprise. We acknowledge that the man is just a symptom of the systemic malaise that not just America but much of the developed world is experiencing; nonetheless, we are not invested enough in this country, nor do we have the mental stamina to withstand what we believe is going to be a diarrhetic poop-show. To ensure we maintain our sanity, we will make our meagre contributions to the fight from a distance. Cowards? Probably. Survivors? We hope so.
Womens' March, 22nd January 2017, Downtown Los Angeles
Almost seven years ago, we embarked on a new way of life which started with our divesting ourselves of most material possessions - house, jewelry, pets, etc. We returned to San Pedro to (try to) settle down for a while and become American citizens. Seemed like a pretty simple plan but aren't simple plans the hardest?
Things did not turn out the way we envisioned (thanks DJT) so we are on the move again. Rolling stones don't gather moss. We don't see ourselves as the single sardine or bird breaking away from its shoal of fish or cloud of starlings, all streaming together, safe in numbers and able to weather whatever the future might dish up. Everybody makes his or her own way and we are no exception. We could yet be gobbled up by the predatory shark or swooped on by the lurking eagle but so can anybody else.
We do know however, that, if we were encumbered by offspring or possessions, we would not be able to step off the cliff again. Fingers crossed that the parachutes work!! Time will tell!
So, where to next? Short-term, we are visiting family and friends in Canada, Holland and Hong Kong. We have also secured a short 'project' in Sri Lanka, where we will be helping out with an Eco-Lodge south of Colombo between April and August. Mid-term, we are searching for development work opportunities in South East Asia or Central America. We will keep you posted!!
|Santa Catalina from White Point and Point Vicente Lighthouse|
This post follows a year and a half after our last 'tale' of caterpillar rains and the attractions of Manaus, Boa Vista (of recent gangland prison beheading fame) and Tepequen in Brazil. And although our Guyana adventure is over, the invaluable experience we gained from working with Conservation International and their various projects in the Rupununi, will always be with us. Living and working in the Equatorial zone took its toll on both of us - we really only felt totally recovered twelve months after our return. We achieved this by spending two months on idyllic Little Gasparilla Island - yes, another tropical stop - quick visits to Holland and Canada and eventually settling back into a 'normal' San Pedro life. We found a delightful little house to rent, just a couple of minutes' walk from the Palisades, looking out on the vast Pacific - next stop - Hawa'ii. It's been wonderful reconnecting with friends and making new ones. Not much has changed in San Pedro, save the hike in house prices and the developments at the Port. But it is still a sleepy, friendly, charming fishing and beach community that is the nearest to home that we have. Work has been spasmodic but at least has paid the bills - which are large and numerous in California. Fast-forward to the present. Here we sit, in our lovely little ocean-side home, with most of our 'possessions' labelled for disposal.... the much-needed rains started before December and have continued, very much like an European summer, for a month. It may be that California's drought status is over with a few more days of drip, drip, drip. We've not been able to hike our normal routes, but have had to stick with paved roads and paths. But it's a small price to pay!
|2016 Dog-Surfing Championships, Southern California|
We hope the images in this post will give you a better picture of our lives since our last communication. Henceforth, we will be boring you with the minute details of our 'adventures' as we progress into the unknown. So, Watch This Space!! The next post probably will be full of snow and mountains and bundled-up bodies, as we make our way North to our Canadian neighbors. Many years ago, I remember observing that Canadians truly excel in mediocrity. Now, I'm beginning to understand the unimaginable value of this unique ability. While we, the rest of the world, run circles around each other, with our heads up our own bottoms, the Canadians and a very few other smart exceptions can look on in wonder at our complete and utter mindless dance with futility and insanity.
Next stop: Nanaimo, BC.