Friday, 27 February 2009

Life Travelling

My commute to work this morning went as follows: Up at 4 for loo. Oooh, a bit chilly. Pop back into bed for another stretch of sleep. Nope. Not happening. Lay snuggled up to Lester with a head full of drifting thoughts, then up at 5.30. Oooh, still chilly. Kettle on for hot water so I can wash my bod. Shiver a bit but put cardi on to keep top half warm, and tuck my feet under Boolie still lying in his bed on the floor beside me to keep them warm. The rest of me has to put up with the chill. Why don't I put the fire on? Because we can't have two electrical units going at the same time. If we do then the electric switches itself off in total. Ah! Water boiled. Fire on. Now excuse me for a min while I give myself a sluice down.

Here I am again! Fully dressed and wrapped up with all layers being worn. Yesterday I actually got down to only three layers up top (thermal vest, 2 T-shirts) because it was so warm here, but this morning I also have on a fleece, a hand knitted cardi, a huge wrap-round scarf, and a poncho thing covering the lot. So, out of the bedroom caravan me and Bools go. It is dark, the stars are still out giving sufficient light to see frost twinkling on the tarps. Gripping the keys in one hand, I step down carefully onto the pallet which is our step up to and down from the caravan, and start the daily commute.

With iced up fingers I fiddle with the zip on the awning. Through it I go. Bools now off doing his doggy activities: peeing, pooing and patrolling. I fiddle in the darkness with getting the kitchen caravan door unlocked. It is a bit of a b*****er this lock. Never seems to want to open easily. Then I have to try and actually get the door open. Fingers and toes now telling me they are cold. Inserting my fingers under the door handle - will I chip another finger nail in my efforts to get this damned door open. Yes! I mean no! Door open. Nails intact.

Switch light on. Head towards fire. But no. Can't be put that on because two electrical things can't be switched on at once. So kettle put on, and stand and shiver for another few minutes while the kettle boils. Grabbing a piece of homemade cake (Lemon), a bowl of dog biscuits for Bools, the keys, and my cup of tea, I head off for the next loop but carefully to avoid tripping over Boolie's old puppy kennel which was used a couple of days ago to house a rabbit which had been donated to us for the pot only it had two broken legs and we couldn't re-cycle it for cook-pot use because the rabbit was too traumatised so we kept it in the kennel over night and then took it to the vet who put it to sleep with dignity - you can't eat an animal who is not happy at its moment of deceasement - anyway, with tea,cake, etc all balanced in my hand, I feel my way round the puppy kennel, round the big stones which are keeping the tarp on the ground anchored to the ground (you know how tarps have a mission to metamorphosize into kites) and onto the pallet which is the step up into the computer room / once upon a time pigchick hut. It is still dark.

Fiddle about with the keys. Bools appears. Cake slides off plate. Bools does a runner away into the dark. Presumably he has found the cake and made off with his prize. Can't feel fingers and toes. Nose dripping. Padlock undone. Wrestle with getting the door handle to slide open, then inside. The room is bathed in starlight. It looks magical. And in comparison to the outside temperature it is warmer in here.

But will my computer switch on this morning? Yesterday it gave me a fright when it bombed out on me but my tech-team guy saved the day, and my good humour, by fixing it up with the comment "You'll be needing a new computer - this one's had it". Crikey more expense. And yes! It looks like I have another day with this old one. It is now first light. Still can't feel toes, but fingers warmed up. No fire on though. I can have one on in here, but prefer not to unless absolutely necessary. We have become quite robust, me and Lester, in regards to putting up with feeling chilly. In the UK we would, without thought, have put the fires and left them on even when we started to feel warmed up. Here we don't. Apart from the problem with overloading the electrical circuits, we are finding that we prefer fresh air and are growing a dislike for heated up air and are healthier as a result: we don't get snuffles and blocked up sinuses and haven't had any colds so far. However, we do like to be warm at the end of the day: going to sleep warm seems to make the chilliness through the day do-able.

Anyway, so this is my commute. And as I weaved my way around the stones and puppy kennel, I thought what a lucky girl I am. It seemed such a silly thing to be carrying tea, cake, dog biscuits and keys, wrapped up in six layers of clothing, with the air not much off freezing in the pre-dawn darkness, and I couldn't have been happier. Nothing would I change.

The owl flew again yesterday, this time in the bright warm sunshine of early afternoon. I feel even more aware that something is on its way. (re blog: An Owl flew today) I suppose I am a little bit worried about what it might be. But in all of my life I have taken up opportunities which have come my way, giving me a life full of ups and downs. And all the opportunities have been good opportunities, even if I haven't been able to understand it at the time. Because I am a Life Traveller, which is someone who doesn't necessarily travel the World, but someone who is continually travelling within themself therefore uncovering different parts of their character which they never knew existed. I could have stayed safe in the UK, but I accepted the challenge of trying something new at an age when most wouldn't. I am learning to cope in a new environment and a new lifestyle. And I couldn't be happier.

Accept your challenges, and then you, too, will become a Life Traveller, and your life will become all the better for it. Staying safe in your personal comfort zone will always make you feel limited in yourself. Do it! Be a Life Traveller as well! When I breath my last pouff of air before I evacuate this life, I think it would be a good thing to think to myself 'I did the best I could, I made the most of the chances that came my way and I have no regrets.' This I pass on to you.