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Europe

Europe feature feminism Mental Health

When I need to be around big things so I can ignore the small…

November 13, 2020

I had a bit of a weird trigger this morning. Usually if I wake early I lie in bed writing a blog or ideas for a poem on my phone as it’s not fun getting up too early in a van when it’s cold, dark and raining outside.Yesterday I posted a lovely chat with Liset who also spends time creating on the road and I was feeling really happy with the way the OUTSIDER blog is evolving. I also sent…

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Liset Van Dommelen

November 12, 2020

This is the first in an occasional series of chats with some truly wonderful OUTSIDER WOMEN from the road. I hope you enjoy these conversations as much as I am. Discover more of Liset’s work on her website here, or Instagram. View this post on Instagram A post shared by OUTSIDER [Sophie McKeand] (@sophiemckeand_outsider) on Nov 12, 2020 at 3:33am PST…

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Europe travel

Shedding skins

November 5, 2020

I’ve only taken three long-haul flights in my life: one to Florida with my daughter about twenty years ago. Then I’ve flown to India twice in more recent years, both for poetry projects. I used to think this made me uncultured, that I hadn’t experienced enough of the world. We even used to take most of our holidays in north Wales. It’s both crazy and amazing how we can jet around the world these days, but I’m also happy that…

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Europe travel

This travelling life

October 31, 2020

Why do I travel? Why not stay in one place and get to know every tiny bone & joint, every breath & sigh? Although for the first forty years of my life I remained pretty stationary, I’m coming to ask why the two (migration or settling) are considered mutually exclusive?Our culture loves polar opposites, loves making people choose one, or shoving someone into a box so we can better (but really just more easily) understand them. What about if sometimes…

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Taking it slow together

October 26, 2020

When all’s said and done living together in a small space will only work if you both practice acceptance – of the self, and each other. You need to grow a deeper awareness of your own faults, and perhaps less of an awareness of your partner’s 😂. These days, arguments are short, sometimes sharp, always forgotten quickly. We’ve learned to move in synch, although this does mean that we manage #accidentalcouplewear more often than we’d like to admit.A old African…

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Europe travel

Leaving Switzerland

August 30, 2020

I’m going to miss the view from this window. These three weeks staying with my sister and her wife in Switzerland have been the best of days. It’s difficult to explain how much living a minimalist, nomadic life has changed us, but I notice it more when I return to the familiarity of family, and I’m discovering that the more time and energy invested in #radicalselflove and #radicalselfacceptance, the better I am at being a partner, mother, sister, friend… and…

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Fire in the mountain

August 10, 2020

An old tattoo reminding me I have fire in my belly, and that sometimes I’ve allowed these flames to be near-extinguished. Mountain energy here is magnificent, and this time I’ve brought all the right things. As for my fears? Well, it doesn’t matter how big the mountain – when multiplying thoughts by 0 fear, you still get 0 fear. Feeling ready to think big and throw down some attitude. Nature always gives us what we need if we’re prepared to…

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creating Europe vanlife

The story of my tattoos

July 30, 2020

Crows now finished. Obrigada Lisandra Siqueira for your beautiful work of art. I knew I had to have this tattooed on my skin the moment Andy returned from Lisandra with new ink. I always said I’d stop having tattoos when I turned 40 because that felt like the time I should start to be more sensible. Ha. Fuck that. Now I’m 44 and working on this leg sleeve. Tattoos are a deeply personal telling of my story and so of…

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Some thoughts on change

June 22, 2020

I haven’t been posting on here so much lately, & it feels as if I’ll be posting less now as the months roll on. Originally I set up this account, and the OUTSIDER Instagram to document our shift from a settled life stuffed full of overwork & fast-paced living, to a more minimalist, slow, migratory way of living. That was thirty months ago. I cannot believe how quickly the time has flowed around us & we have felt like a…

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