Friday, June 29, 2012

Things are flying together!

Today was another huge day!! I have been in interaction with a few more CouchSurfers talking about a cross country trip for a couple weeks now.  Today we met at a cafe and chatted about it. So......! Here's what's gonna happen. I'm departing LA on Friday July 13th to do a cross country trip. It seems like the CouchSurfers have the same plan as me. That is; to get from LA to the east coast. We're all open on where we stop, where we sleep, camping, winging it and having a great time along the way.  I am yet again VERY EXCITED!  I now have a departure date!!! Lucky Friday the 13th!

Before I leave I feel it's necessary to go see my cousins in the Sacramento area. As well as my long lost, amazing brother and nieces I've never met in Oregon! With that being said I guess I'm leaving the LA area on Tuesday to go visit the fam. While I'm gone I need to wrap up my work visa, travel insurance, some other paperwork and buy the necessary supplies including: a tent, a new backpack and a faux wedding ring to match the one on my right ring finger.

Yikes! It's all pulling together so QUICKLY!     :D

I write this as I drink a vintage bottle of my favorite kind of wine, the Shiraz.  Compliments, and of course, with the permission, of the person I'm house sitting for. Bummer!! This whole "homeless" thing sucks! Haha! Cheers! Soon I'll be drinking Shiraz in it's homeland while working on a farm!

Nighty night amazing, beautiful, big world.  Positive vibes to all y'all.

- Nicole 

Me: Jumping for joy and enjoying God's beautifully crafted canvas in Santa Barbara, CA.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

LA update

The last few weeks have been kind of crazy! I became a part of the CouchSurfing community online. I began hanging out with them to get a feel for what it's going to be like on the road. With that being said,  I finished moving out of my apartment last Thursday. That was a little nuts! Even though I thought I was making good progress getting stuff out there was still A LOT to do! My mom was a huge help along with a random CouchSurfer that I hosted the two night in my apartment.  He was out here for an interview at a hostel and would have otherwise had no place to go. His presence helped keep me calm and get me through the whole process. For him, what I was doing was not just normal but he reminded me I was being petty without saying a word. 

Friday was a bit interesting. It was my first night without a place to stay.  I thought I had my sleeping situation figured out for the night. Then showed up to find that I was completely wrong.  My assuming did exactly what they say. That is, it made an ass out of that person and me.  After realizing I was wrong I took a minute to gather my thoughts about what to do next. I called a friend a little hysterical and asked to sleep at their pad. I showed up in tears thinking about what not having a place of my own was going to be like. It felt so foreign. When I arrived I was then greeted by hugs, warm wishes and a beautiful woman/friend watching TV who happened to have a cozy chest for me to sob into. (I wonder if she realizes that's what was going through my mind. I don't think she would mind anyway.) I was so exhausted I instantly fell asleep in her lap while she watched a marathon of TV.  In the morning I was greeted by a hangover and the cutest, most ugliest mutt dog you've ever seen jumping all over the couch. I figured this was an amazing start to the beginning of my homeless adventure.

Last Saturday was my art show. It was a success! (Thank you to everyone who came out and supported!) Almost all the art pieces sold along with some of the jewelry. The rest of the jewelry I'll be taking on the road in case I get in a bind or need a present to give my future CouchSurfing hosts.  It seems crazy to me that it took me going on this kind of adventure to finally have my first solo show.  Talk about a kick in the pants and putting all doubts behind me.  There is no time or place for doubting myself or my adventure.  I must make things happen!

As of yesterday. I finally got a response from the cousins in Sweden! I wrote them the same day I decided I was going to have an art show but hadn't received a response. I guess my mom finally called and made contact with them. It sounds like I'll have a guest house to myself. Apparently I have two younger cousins there. One is 24 and one is 18! My reluctance has subsided quite a bit and the excitement has returned.

My living situation is currently awesome! I was asked to house sit for a friend who has the cutest dog ever. He's very protective and scary at first but he has the sweetest demeanor and literally won't stop licking me. HA! Who needs a boyfriend! I took him for a hike today.  Tomorrow I'll go run/skateboard and bring him along as well. I think this will be a good idea. Especially since I've been eating everything in sight for the last few weeks due to stress and nerves. I'm blessed to have this place to myself for a few days so I can chill and work on getting things ready for my trip.

The details about exactly how I'm going to get to Sweden are still being worked out.  I think I may bail on Sunday or Monday to go visit my other Swedish cousins in the Sacramento area. Perhaps I'll even make it up to see my brother in Bend, OR. I haven't seen him in almost 14 years, nor met my two gorgeous nieces.  None of these people know I'm even contemplating this yet.  I think it will be a nice surprise if it happens!

Beside that, my phone has been blowing up for days! Everyone wants to hang out! I feel very loved and appreciated. I am really going to miss the amazing people in my life today. I guess sometimes you have to make sacrifices to conquer much more.  I wish I could have my cake, on this one, AND eat it too.  I don't care about my belongings.  I'm going to miss these amazing people.

Now to go enjoy some wine, hang with the doggie, watch some terrible TV and pass out at a semi reasonable hour.  Yay me!

"Symmetry" - Venice Beach, CA

I used to often feel like this sail boat. Quiet and alone in the distance.
It never mattered to me if no one else noticed I was really on a mission.

All that matters is that I was true to myself and my purpose.
Sail on my friends!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Let the adventure begin!

The time has come! I've decided to take a backpacking trip around the world! I'll leave LA, either fly or take a train to Ohio, drive to NY then start my European journey in Sweden. I'll keep moving south through Europe, head to Italy then decide whether to go to Africa or the middle east, stop in Australia, Thailand and move through Asia. Depending on how my journey has gone I may stop home and say hi or I may just fly to the tip of south America and head north til I get back home to LA.

With that being said I've begun raising funds by selling everything I own one piece at a time and having an art and jewelry show/party 23rd. I will be launching kickstarter campaign to raise $20,000 in 30 days to help pay for the main expenses.  Anything left over from that will go towards volunteering around the world.

I'm looking forward to meeting new people around the world and sharing laughs. I can only begin to imagine how much of a different person I'll be when I get back. I will be posting updates to this blog about my location and my experiences.