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Europe

dailyconnectionwithnature Europe travel vanlife

European vanlife

September 20, 2018

  Finished driving for the day. Feels like we’ve driven back into summer. Now for an evening of work. So much to do. Doesn’t feel so bad when this is the view though. We’re filled with a mixture of utter elation that we’re doing this and abject terror that it might all go wrong. But then if you don’t have a plan, how can it go wrong? 🙈#dailyconnectionwithnature day117 #vanlife #fulltimevanlife #homeiswhereyouparkit #homeonwheels #europe #european #loveeurope #officeview #onelife #followyourfeet #followyourdreams…

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Europe feature food politics

Refugee community kitchen

September 18, 2018

  Today I’m working in the Refugee Community Kitchen before we hit the road towards Switzerland. Every day the team makes 1500 meals that feed refugees as well as the volunteers. It’s a mammoth task and I have no idea how they manage to do this every day with only volunteers. I’ve never washed and shredded so many lettuce in my life. I’m in absolute awe of the organisations here who knit seamlessly together to support refugees in all aspects…

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Europe poetry politics

Choose Love

September 17, 2018

  It’s been a blast working in Sew Ho today: stitching up split seams, sewing on buttons, and patching up jeans. But it has also got me thinking about the nature of charity, and gratitude, and what those words actually mean. Charity is about giving something to help those in need; gratitude is about being thankful. After two days working in the refugee warehouse I’m beginning to question why some people have donated items? Firstly, there are a lot of…

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dailyconnectionwithnature Europe politics travel

Conflicted

September 16, 2018

Today has been a day of contrasts: of spending half in a warehouse sorting clothes donations for refugees, thinking about the people each piece is destined for and the horrific circumstances that would force a person to leave their homeland in the hope of a future without war or persecution; and this evening walking carefree along a beautiful beach watching ferries trundle past in the bright autumn sun knowing I will wake to this view, and acutely aware that my…

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dailyconnectionwithnature Europe feature nature travel

Time to uproot

September 11, 2018

  Followed a sign for a lake as I was thinking of swimming but it turned out to be a plant-filled-pond. Not swimmable! I did, however find this lovely wild mint instead. And the Alder trees here asked me to visualise what it is that I really want instead of what I think people want from me. Speaking the words out loud made them real: I want to travel Europe in the van with Andy and the hounds; with my…

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dailyconnectionwithnature Europe travel vanlife

Dreaming of the road

September 4, 2018

  We’re all itching to hit the road now. Van passed her MOT today with not too many things that needed fixing – new rear tyres will help with those climbs on the French and Swiss Alps. I’m missing having such an easy connection with nature – being back has made me realise how much concrete we’re surrounded by all the time in our towns and housing estates. Dreaming of chasing mountains and immersing in the waters and languages of…

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Europe politics travel vanlife

Shoes needed in Calais

September 3, 2018

  Dear friends – we leave for Europe in less than two weeks and I didn’t feel it possible to drive through Calais again this year without stopping to volunteer at one of the refugee centres for a week. My heart broke to see all the razor wire, twenty-foot-high fences and armed security put there in response to people who are fleeing for their lives and who don’t have the luxury of a van like ours to travel and sleep…

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dailyconnectionwithnature Europe family feature nature travel vanlife

Vanlife is not a crime

September 2, 2018

  We’re doing the family rounds before heading off to Europe in a couple of weeks. Visiting all their houses and trying to find places to park up whilst doing so makes me think again about our shift in lifestyle: switching from being settled to being nomadic. I’ve thought a lot about this lately because being in Wales means we come up against the many many rules and regulations that are designed to prevent people from travelling, including massive, empty…

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Europe politics vanlife

Water scarcity

July 29, 2018

  Every six or seven days we have to find water, which makes us hyper aware of consumption. There’s no leaving the tap on whilst brushing teeth or using three huge bowls of water to do the washing up; the dishes get done once at the end of each day. Finding water is more difficult in England and Wales; Europe (and Scotland) seem to have a more welcoming approach to people travelling through. We have three 25litre tanks so 75L…

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Europe feature minimalism nature politics travel

A Slow Life

July 26, 2018

I’m embracing the slow life more these days. It’s a way of existing I’ve felt a great affinity with for some years. When we lived in Mold I was the U.K. project officer for Cittaslow UK for a time (Cittaslow being Italian for Slow Town where the idea originated). Just in our small town we planted community orchards and put on festivals ❤. It’s not a movement that’s taken off so much in the U.K. and I would break my…

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