In September I came back from Denmark, where I had stayed a year. I came back to Fryslân to prepare my world trip and to finish a few books. That sounds cockier than I mean to. I just couldn’t have finished them if I stayed on the farm in my ‘campingvogn’. Now, the books are almost finished.
‘Well, go!’ you would say and I wouldn’t be happier if I could, but now I have to wait until the books are published, because I don’t want to leave before they have seen the light of day. The ‘waiting’ is a gnawing annoyance to say the least. First I thought I would have to take my time to prepare my trip, but is half a year not a little too much? Wouldn’t I have been more efficient if I took less time for it? But I like to be well prepared for a thing I’ve never ever have done before I thought at first. The more you prepare, the safer and more confident you are, right? To say I think that is bullocks is a bit exaggerated, but I do think a bit different about it right now. Because I have changed my route already a few times. That is why I don’t want any visa’s before I set off, because I am well aware of the fact that it might change more than once while I’m on the road. Without the pressure of visa’s I believe to experience more freedom. Maybe I even hope it changes while I am cycling, to embrace the unpredicted, which is part of the adventure.
Apart from that, isn’t it more attractive to plunge into the unknown than to have researched every little bit before entering a country? When you have read everyones opinion and prejudices, that is already the foundation of your second-hand opinion and a dozen prejudices of your own. Isn’t it better to roll into a country with an open mind and open eyes and drown everything in unfiltered? So you can form an image of the country that is enterily yours and yours alone. Let your experiences being written on a blank sheet.
The same counts for gear as well. At first I thought I had to collect everything before I would go, so I would be reassured I had the best thinkable gear in my panniers. I would feel more confident and maybe also more safe, what can go wrong when you can rely on your expensive outdoor-material? But I am going away in springtime, so I don’t think I need warm snow boots are a down jacket right away. Why cycle thousands of kilometers with that before the temperature would drop. Can’t I just buy a second-hand warm coat on the road? Maybe there will happen something that I might not even be needing it. By the way I am quite sure there are some things I don’t think of before I leave my homecountry. Than I just have to do without are try to procure it. Or I bring too much.
In short, I ‘just’ prepare to the extent that I can set off and then let the adventure unfold. So half a year is quite a long time to bide ones time, but luckily boredom doens’t exist in my dictionary.