It sounds a little pathetic. Hands up, I’m the first to swallow my urge to vomit at parents who live vicariously through their children. But there’s a difference between forcing your own failings upon your offspring and encouraging them to develop their own sense of self. Continue reading “Pretty Close to Perfection, Our Weekend in Cascais, Portugal”
We didn’t have the best of days. All three of us, I mean. I haven’t started talking about myself in the third person or anything just yet. Something was just off today and I think we all had reasons to be cranky. Continue reading “What’s Harder Than Being Sick? Having Two Kids to Look After While Being Sick”
It feels like a lot longer than two and a half weeks since we first set off on the road for our working vacation in Portugal. We’ve established a new routine already. They know us in the laundry, the small Italian restaurant just a few minutes from our house, and even in the adventure park at Alto da Serafina in Lisbon. Continue reading “Top 10 Takeaways From Our Working Vacation in Portugal So Far”
Today, I turned 40. Not a statement I was looking forward to saying, but there it is anyway. Been doing a lot of reevaluating and soul searching lately, although there isn’t all that much time for that.
Work is now 24/7. I sort of hate smartphones. They are a double-edged sword. They give you the “freedom” to work from anywhere–and the obligation to also do so. Continue reading “I Turned 40 Today”
As the sun goes down on Saturday, tomorrow marks exactly one week since we got here. Ericeira, Portugal. Our home away from home–and we’re loving it more and more as the time goes by. Continue reading “Our Home Away from Home in Ericeira Portugal”
I surfed today for the first time in four years. I can’t decide which part of that statement carries more weight for me. The fact that I bit the bullet, canceled a couple of meetings, and just f**king did it; or the thinly veiled sadness I feel at the fact that I’ve made my needs invisible for so long.
My arms ache and my body feels bruised and tired. I have half of the Atlantic ocean in my left ear and my hearing is somewhat diminished. But it was worth it. Every salty cold, glorious minute of it.
I was panicking inside about not remembering how to jump on the board or paddle for a wave. Like the first time you get in a car after not driving for a while and you overthink where your feet go and how to change gears.
Very soon though I was catching lefts and rights and riding the wave almost to its end. That natural high that only comes for me when I’m alone with my board and the ocean had me grinning from ear to ear.
There’s more–a whole lot more–to life than working and earning money. I’ve been trapped in the wrong mindset for too long.
I used to know how to live and those memories are slowly coming back to me. The crisis of Monday with the WTF am I doing? moments and mom guilt about leaving my kids in an unknown place in Portugal are slowly dissipating. I’m feeling something strangely close to happy… for the first time in a long time.
And the kids are as well. The daycare center is everything I dreamed it to be. There are children from all over the world speaking Portuguese, Spanish, English, Italian, Danish… holding hands, exploring and playing; being kids and being free.
Also, the sun finally came out unhampered by clouds and this place is decidedly cheerful in the full light.
To be clear though, there is no perfect. Cataleya’s still crying in her sleep, waking in the night, and causing me to worry. Valentino poured coffee all over my brand new laptop and now all the keys are sticky. I won’t even get started on work.
But… we’re getting through it. This home away from home is starting to feel exactly that and, I dare to say, we’re even enjoying it.
At some point, there has to be some kind of dawn of realization and self-reckoning. Life is hard, without doubt. It’s an indisputable reality that things are more complicated with kids, work, ageing parents, or whatever your burden happens to be. But you also have to stop and realize when you’re hiding behind that burden. Continue reading “Knowing When to Draw the Line”
I learned a lot over the last few days, which already seem like an eternity to me. Just like when I was a youth and the road was all-consuming. 24 hours could involve searching for anacondas, getting detained by Mexican police, or sleeping under the stars by a rapid river. Continue reading “Spain to Portugal – Balancing Kids with Travel and Work”
Day one, long.
There is so much sunlight in Spain. Literally, I feel as if I can’t remember the last time it was night.
To be fair, we did start the journey on the longest day of the year. And long indeed the day has been. Continue reading “Valencia to Ciudad Real – The Longest Day”