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 New Media Creation - Video Production - Photography - GONZO Style Blog - Art - Music - Writing

Getting Ready

I'm preparing to become a permanent traveler.

(I have recently visited this blog again and realized how anxious I was at the time. I was going through a bad patch in my life, hence the sad overtones. Since then I have discovered that I love what I'm doing and I have met so many friendly and helpful folks and I continue to have amazing experiences. This is the best thing I could have done!) - written on 19 June 2016

For years I have thought and dreamed about this: getting rid of excess baggage and hitting the road, reporting with images, words and video clips about whatever I find. It took a personal crisis for me to get to the point of finally taking the leap. I did not expect that this dream would ever become a reality at this point in time. It’s scary. The next phase of my life will be a mixture of excitement, uncertainty and constant movement. I am giving up the past and embracing a whole new lifestyle of a permanent traveler. The gypsy life does not beckon any longer, it is here, and it wants to be reckoned with.

I have always had trouble with the generally accepted ‘straight’ life. I don't care much for fitting into society's predetermined boxes. My consciousnesses refuses to co-operate with the norm, the whole career path and gathering of material objects. I respect other's right to do so, but it does not work for me. I have a different definition of wealth, which is the experiences and people I encounter as I journey onwards through life, embracing my unique destiny as I go along.  

I could also never understand the concept of only doing one thing. That for me, is just crazy! I have one life to live and I plan to experience and get to know as many things as possible. This same thinking does not allow me to believe in the hierarchical system our society is based and economically dependent on. In my eyes we were all born free on the same piece of living rock traveling through the same universe and therefore we are all equal cosmic beings trapped in the physical illusion of inequality for a little while. I do not have a king, queen, idol, boss, president or leader. I am my own government and kingdom. Do not expect me to conform to your idea of reality.  

The whole treadmill of the human melodrama simply does not compute. I am not interested in accumulating material wealth or social kudos. These parameters are to narrow for my thinking. I’m interested in gathering as much experiences as possible before my time is up. That is my idea of true wealth. I prefer to be an outsider, an observer.  I also have to cope with my own mind creation, and the only way out now is leaving the ‘normal’ world (I could never fit into anyway) completely behind and to take a wild leap into the unknown. This is it. This is me before taking that final leap.

I’m selling every little thing I own, from the teaspoons to my desktop computer. I need a good backpack, a sleeping bag and warm clothes before I leave, and of course a little pocket money so I can at least buy basic things like food and some cheap vino from time to time when the going gets rough. There is no budget for accommodation. I hope to be able find some piecemeal jobs as I go along. I know some folks so I might get a warm bed to sleep in here and there, but I do not plan to impose myself on anyone. This is my life, my journey and the problems that go with it is something I have to deal with. I have learnt by now that I am not a victim and that nobody owes me anything. I therefore expect to spend quite a bit of time out in the open. This will take some getting used to, but it's all part of the adventure. From this point forward only the world is my comfort zone.

All that I will have with me is a backpack with my basics for survival, one video camera, one still camera, a laptop for editing and writing, two tripods and my guitar and harmonicas. These things will become my life. It is not easy to give up possessions that you have grown attached to. Six months ago when I moved here I was under the idealistic impression that I would not move from here again for many years, that my business would thrive, that I might even get a life partner and start settling down; but as is always the case, life had other plans in stall for me. 

Part 2 - Leaving Salt River

In Salt River you will not find tourists, middle class housewives on a shopping spree or wealthy hipsters sipping trendy drinks in a sidewalk cafe (yet). What you will find is a melting pot of people from all over Africa eking out an existence by running internet cafes, washing and mending clothes and selling religion. You will find second class prostitutes with imitation smiles and dodgy creatures selling cheap amphetamines, hard-up men cracking jokes on street curbs, hoping for a piecemeal job, informal traders and small cafe owners, Muslims on their way to the mosque and here and there an artist trying to find his or her way in the big bad city. There is also allot of industry, especially in the garment manufacturing and cloth sector, vegetable vendors and a variety of other small businesses.                                                                                       If you are into reality instead of fantasy, if you are into the way the 90% live instead of bedtime stories with milk and cookies under satin sheets; this is the place for you. I moved here almost one year ago with plans to make something of my life in the city after fleeing the small town of Wellington where my living arrangement have become untenable. (Walking 7 km into town to get groceries in the middle of summer is no joke.)                                                                                                                                                      I chose Salt River because it was cheap, the only place where I could get a large space for a fairly low rent. I also like the edgy parts of life, (I am into reality and a keen observer of the real life struggle of ordinary people.) So what was my experience here? I can I tell you about my Christmas where I had two quarts of beer in a rundown tavern and ended up late at night swopping banter with a street prostitute in my lap. I just wanted to talk and she just wanted business, in the end we both had fun and it was one of my poorest and best Christmases ever. (I did not sleep with her, we just talked, by the way). I can tell you about the boisterous and joyous spontaneous happenings in my studio with interesting people, loads of wine and good food, and about my precious Congolese neighbours who helped me fix my place up for free, possibly the best neighbours I ever had. I never really felt threatened or unsafe here and I enjoyed my noisy stay in this lesser known part of the city. Now it is over and I’m moving on and much of it I will miss and remember. Adventure has chosen to come my way again and that old itch called wanderlust is slowly making its way to the surface.                                                                                                                                             That is one thing this town taught me well: the art of moving on rapidly. Don’t look back, Jack, the future is now. Watch this space by the way, Salt River is fast becoming the next big thing. 

                                            Leaving Salt River