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Origins of a World Nomad

SOUTH AFRICA | Tuesday, 25 October 2011 | Views [290]

Part 1:

There I was sitting on a table grape farm in the Western Cape of South Africa, wondering what my next move would be, should be, and could be. Having contemplated giving up many times on myself, life, careers and many other things, here I found myself looking to the sky and hoping the wind would whistle the answers. The warm autumn sun helped, it helped a lot. So do good food and plenty of rest. Why is it that I found myself in this position so often? Wondering why I was so confused and lost. It always seemed as though I thought about things too much, examined everything and criticized my own choices. The very nature of critiquing my own choices doesn’t make sense, but I did it time and time again.

So there I was starring, looking and dreaming. Hoping that it would all become clear and I would find the answer I was looking for. As I looked at the nearby mountains I began staring at a valley. The sun was setting to the left of the valley and found myself lined up looking right at the ridge in the mountain. As clear as day I saw an image. I picked up my nearby diary and began to draw what I saw.

A few things occurred to me. One of them was that you can see or find pretty much anything if you look hard enough and the other thing was that I must be going crazy!

Crazy wasn’t far off it would appear as at that moment I had what I suppose you would call an epiphany.

Two months earlier I had moved from Knysna on the east coast of South Africa back to my hometown of Cape Town. This had happened after a business and personal relationship had come to an end leaving me no reason to stay in the small but beautiful South African holiday town.

Three years prior to that I had arrived in Knysna to start what had felt like the beginning of a great new life. A life I thought I had always wanted. I had returning to South Africa after 8 years overseas working towards something that had just never happened I guess. What that something was I had hoped would be clear when I found it. But by not knowing, made it rather hard to know when I found it. So when the opportunity came to return home with an offer of a beautiful woman, that seemed like all the something I needed. No arm twisting required. So I guess it was no wonder that the something turned out to be another nothing and inevitably left me back at square one. Or at least that is how I felt. I would feel like that every day until recently when things all started to make sense….in a fuzzy kinda way. Well I suppose it made sense in comparison to the nonsense I had be feeling, thinking and saying…anyway where was it?...

Right so the epiphany – well I sat there looking at the beautiful mountain, with the beautiful sun and everything was just beautiful you could say. And no, I didn’t suddenly find God, or hear a voice or get struck by an amazing idea. But what I had was an epiphany of a different kind.

Now I forgot to mention that in leaving Knysna, and my personal relationship and business two months prior I had also been paid out for my shares in the business. Now it was by no means a lot of money but definitely more money than I had ever had in one place of my very own.

So what I thought at that moment was – why don’t I buy myself a land rover and travel South Africa for a year and just see what happens, see where it takes me, see who I meet and what I learn, and maybe just maybe someone will pick up on what I am doing and why and something will come of it.

So there I was with no real goal or plan or idea – just a thought of me doing something for me, just me, with the possibility of something maybe coming of it. And if nothing did come of it then, oh well I would be back where I started three years ago. So that, my friends was the first moment of the expedition project.

As I began thinking more about it, I realized that it may be possible to build up a bit of hype over this trip and I could maybe even get some publicity or even sponsors in doing so.

Next I needed things that I would be doing. Being the person that I am, I find it very hard to just BE or to just DO, I always have to have a plan of attack. So I started making a list of possible things I could do that would last me a whole 365 traveling South Africa.

Now I needed a route! Several options came up while I started planning but I finally set my sights on a South African perimeter route – up the west coast, east parallel to the northern border and down the east coast back to Cape Town.

Piece by piece the project took shape and it started occupying my every thought. I would work all day everyday on more ideas, plans, routes, implementation and development etc.

What had started as a simple journey, turned into a company!

Finally 4 months later I sat with a prospectus, business plan, corporate identity, marketing plan, logo, website (in the making), temporary vehicle and no money left. It was August 2011 and ‘The EXPEDITION Project’, as it was now officially named and branded, was targeted for January 2012.

Tags: capetown, expedition, journey, nomad, southafrica

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