- Early morning walk with the dogs
- Making an apple & pear crumble. Recipe coming on monday
- You’re never too old to play with a frisbee
- I can’t believe I live here now. So insanely beautiful
- This dog is one of the craziest dogs ever
- Working on the apple & pear crumble
- The place we live is only 5 minutes from the sea
- Our friend came over and brought a local buttercake
Do you ever feel like you do a lot but you don’t get anything done? I’ve felt like this all week.I feel stressed and like I should be working on something. But at the end of the day, I have nothing to really show for. Starting next week, I’m going to work more organised and efficient. I have complete faith in myself. This will work.
I always have lots of plans and ideas. My mind is constantly thinking about how to make things better.
Inspired by Color Overboard‘s Month of Effort, I decided to put my thoughts into action. It started with making a list of 10 things I wanted to achieve this month. Tomorrow is the end of my month of effort and I loved it. It gave me some perspective and direction. I can really recommend you to look into it and give it a try. It makes focussing on what you want to achieve a lot easier.
I get easily distracted and can lose sight of where I want to go. Nick calls this my ‘shiny problem’. According to him every time I see something interesting, I drift off. Like a crow, seeing something shiny (She does! It goes like: ‘Ooooh, shiny!’). Does this make sense? The joys of being in a relationship. You develop your own language and quirks after a while. When we started living here with Nick’s dad and brother we really had to adjust. While on the road we often only had each other to talk to and we almost became that weird couple that no one understands because they have too many insiders jokes.
Normally I have Nick edit posts like this, to make them coherent and so it doesn’t show how easily I derail. I started out with sharing about my Month of Effort. I end up talking about our own relationship language. I’ve got the ability to do this during any activity, at any time. Sometimes I just drift off. Or see something shiny.
What do you think? Are you trying a Month of Effort? Any tips for me to be less distracted all the time?
The last few days I have been getting a lot of love for a Mongolia post I posted almost a year ago. This made me revisit my Mongolia pictures and I realised there where still a lot of gems left there. So here it is, some nature porn. Endless Mongolia, full of pictures of Mongolia.
When we tell people where we’ve been and what we’ve done, we sort of forget about Mongolia. We mention it and people are intrigued but that’s it. To us, Mongolia was kind. It’s like a little blanket you wrap around. It’s comfortable, it’s insanely pretty and it makes you feel at home.
It’s been almost a year since we were in Mongolia. There are a few things I will never forget.
- I saw my first falling star in Mongolia
- We saved a man’s life. He was sleeping in a ger that caught on fire. I was shouting at him to get out and Nick got help to put out the fire.
- Because of the enormous growth of the Mongolian economy (due to the recent finding of rare metals), there is a small group of insanely rich people. The rest of the people aren’t. There is no middle class.
- This translates into: there are ger camps next to skyscrapers
- Nick held a gigantic Golden Eagle in Mongolia
- We hired a driver to take us to a ger camp and he didn’t speak a single word of English, except for ‘yes’. He kept repeating it, then laughing hysterically the entire drive. Funniest laugh I have ever heard.
Mongolia is beautiful, it’s a little quirky and it has amazingly friendly and inviting people, even though you will not say so at first sight. We loved it there, even though we were only there for ten days. We are surely going back for an in-depth visit soon. What about you? Have you visited Mongolia? If not, you should. Really.
- We’re so glad to have our bikes back.
- This little owl stole my heart. It’s so fluffy!
- We made our own Pho from scratch and these were some of the spices. Recipe coming soon!
- This gorgeous island with its blue skies
- Fence covered in wool. There are so many sheep here.
- Ice at the local ‘ice cream-farm’.
- A tiny manual sluice.
- All of the ice cream is made from cows milked on site.
This last week, we’ve been riding our bikes around the island, discovering little treasures like the tiny manual sluice (this does sound really Dutch doesn’t it? Who else has a sluice near his house?). These last day of summer are filled with bright days and cold nights. I hope they last forever.
Before we left home to travel, we sold everything we owned. We only kept a few boxes of really important stuff and our bikes.
It’s so weird when you have nothing, no possessions. In a way it is total freedom. There is nothing crowding our rooms and minds. I never have to worry about what I’m going to wear. I only have one pair of shoes. We own nothing except for some clothes, the few souvenirs we bought and some boxes with pictures and such.
It does make it difficult for us to really feel at home. When nothing is yours, it’s hard to make a place feel like home, even though we’re there. We were really looking forward to feeling at home again, something we never really felt while traveling. Don’t be mistaken, there were plenty of places where we felt awesome. But we were always looking for a home, and it seems we’re going to have to stick it out a little while longer. Or at least until we’ve got a place we can give the love and fill with the stuff a life needs.
How are you enjoying your last weeks of summer?
You know the moments, those small moments. The moments you’d forget if you didn’t take a picture. Those moments that leave you grinning for a moment, but not for days. They are transient but essential. We had a few of them in Singapore. I forgot about them until I was sorting through our pictures. I wanted to share a few of them with you, because remembering them made me smile.
Midnight inline skate lesson – We were out at night, walking around Singapore’s city center. We found an empty box on the ground and a Singaporean man next to it, struggling on the inline skates he just bought. He had no idea how to skate but he was trying all the same. Nick inline skated when he was younger so he grabbed the man by the hands and showed him some moves. It was so spontaneous and Nick was so sincere in trying to help this man become a better skater. I hope this man is now rocking his inline skates all over Singapore.
Snake scare – Jungle hikes are the most horrible thing there is, yet we found ourselves once again walking around a jungle. Bukit Timah Nature Reserve tortured us with its tropical heat. In the middle of the jungle we stumbled upon a cave. Fenced shut, but fascinating nonetheless. At the entrance of the cave we found a shed snake-skin on the ground, or so we thought. Nick’s sister was up close taking pictures, we kept reassuring her it was only skin. No snake looks like that. Of course I also wanted to take some pictures. I was 5 cm away from the snake, trying to get a good close up when it blinked. IT BLINKED! I screamed, jumped up and ran away, like anyone would have done. Right?
Three million men – There’s a lot of Indian people in Little India, which kind of makes sense. Most of them are men. These men are often poor men from India, moving to Singapore for a couple of years to do construction work to make some money to support the family they left at home.
We were warned: avoid Little India on sundays. Forgetting which day it was and not really listening to other people’s advice (there is a lesson here), we unknowingly walked into the biggest gathering of men I have ever seen. The streets were crawling with Indian men. Just men. Nick’s sister and I were the only two girls and to make matters worse, tiny blond girls. We stood out like two dots of white in a sea of black. If I have to guess, there were about three million men walking on the streets of Little India that Sunday. I kid you not, there were no roads or sidewalks to be seen anymore. I have never seen anything like it, it was insane.
What are some of the small adventures you can remember?
I’ve been trying to find the right words to tell you about this incredible beautiful country called Mongolia but there are no words to describe the magnificence of Mongolia. Being in the Mongolia countryside is a humbling and calming experience. I advise you to go here. Now. Check this out for some more pictures we took of Mongolia.