It is often suggested that I am living an almost idyllic lifestyle, the envy of many who would love to do the same sort of thing. I would certainly not try to convince you otherwise, as I am really enjoying what I am doing, but I do often try to point out to people that this is all far from easy.
I seem to spend a disproportionate amount of my time in front of this computer, and I often feel that I am “at work” a lot of the time. I have to focus on three main areas, and try to maintain some sort of balance.
I am often focussed on the recent past, when I pick photos, edit videos, and write blogs about what I have just done. But I also have to spend a huge amount of time planning the future – flights, trains, buses, accomodation, and more. It often takes a couple of days or more to plan and sort everything for a particular goal. And I have to do this as effectively as possible, as funds are pretty tight, and I need to make the money I have last as long as possible.
But while chronicling the past and planning the future, I also try to be aware of enjoying the present too, as that is really why I am doing a lot of these things – to enjoy some incredible experiences. Sometimes I almost feel that I don’t quite manage to absorb the full experience, because I am concentrating a bit too much on trying to video it, or get a great photo.
And so as I head to my next exciting, and somewhat nerve-wracking goal, which is one of the longest unfulfilled goals I have, I hope to really soak up the experience. I don’t imagine I will be back to do this one again!
But I will also try to get some good pictures too – I think it will be quite a spectacle!
Here are just a couple of other things from the past, present and future…
My brother somewhat randomly found a new video for the song “Can You Give It” by UK group The Maccabees. I somehow manage to make two very brief appearances in the video, at time codes 2min40s, where there is a fleeting view of my back, and 3min05s, where I am hovering around at the back of the crowd of competitors. It’s a shame one of my goals wasn’t to appear in a music video, instead of a Hollywood movie!
I am back in London again, having travelled back up from Devon via the beautiful little town of Postbridge, and then along the A303 past the spectacular (and spectacularly expensive to visit) Stonehenge.
I have had a couple of busy days trying to plan another goal that I am going to try to achieve while in Spain, but took some time off yesterday to enjoy the unusually hot English summer, and went down to Hyde Park to see the recently reformed group Blur in concert.
We didn’t actually have tickets, and were happy to sit outside the huge concert enclosure enjoying the sun and a few beers. An excellent last evening in London.
Many thanks to Martin and Rachel for putting up with me being on their sofa on and off for several weeks, while also having to deal with the stresses of having the whole house in turmoil as they have extensive building work completed.
And so after more than a month in England, it is time to move on again, and once more I feel that mixture of excitement and trepidation. It gets slightly easier each time I do it, but it is still challenging to pack the rucsac once again and leave behind the comfortable and familiar, for unknown adventures ahead.
I take the train tonight up to Birmingham, where I will have to spend the rest of the night in the airport. An early flight takes me to Biarritz in the south of France, and I can hopefully get a seat on the bus to Pamplona. I imagine it is going to be pretty busy.
I had managed to organise some tented accomodation through First Festival Travel at their campsite, about 30 kilometres out of town, for which I am very grateful. However, just yesterday I received an offer that I just couldn’t refuse. “You can stay with us,” said Michael of San Fermin Travel Central. He has an apartment with a balcony that overlooks the main street in Pamplona where the bull run occurs each morning. Fantastic!! Many thanks Michael, I am really looking forward to this one!