This is to…

… missing people and places we have met during our lives, to family and loved ones we think of, to missing Sweden and all its lovely weirdness, to nature and beauty, to tears and laughter, to love and loss, to life and death. This is to all the things that are part of living and still not understanding one single thing.

image

Lotus flower

Last night we stayed up late, talking about what we want and need right now.

All of a sudden we realized we easily get caught up in what is happening around us here, and that we quite often do things when what we really need in that moment is to take a deep breath and ask ourselves what we want to do or what’s most needed for us right now.

Saying yes to invitations, or to take another step into local life in order to learn and understand more is at times extremely tiresome and challenging. Lots of fun of course, and tiresome.

image

Moon and palm trees

We start to understand how used we are to having time on our own, to be able to walk out a door without meeting a single person (yes, in Sweden one can actually be alone rather often), how we are longing for the sometimes isolated life many Swedish people live – that we also not always like – it is nice when people come together to help and care for each other.

We start to wonder how to get the mix we’d like to have – to have a place to stay where we can choose when to meet with others and when to be alone. Where people greet and care for each other, are willing to help and still give one another privacy. Where it’s ok to say yes to dinner today, and no thanks tomorrow. Where there are less questions about how we choose to lead our lives and more acceptance for differences. Where the climate is good and there is an openness to views if life we’re not familiar with. Where love flows and there’s a big acceptance for people.

image

How did we end up helping to repair this roof?

Sure, we’re the first to say that we are all responsible for creating a way of living and an surrounding environment that we like and can thrive in. And yet there are certain things we as humans can not control, and most certainly we can not change others – only ourselves. So who are we, Anders and Wivan, in the middle of all these thoughts and longings?

Right now I think we have more questions than answers, and accept that fact. Who knows what will happen today or tomorrow. We’ll take our responsibility for ourselves and see to our needs, and from that we see what happens and where we end up.

With love, gratitude and many questions,
Wivan

Advertisements

New place; new beginnings

image

At the hotel in Phuket

When constantly coming to new places, changing settings for how and where we live, there are possibilities for new beginnings ever so often. And I must say, we take advantage of that.
When walking home from the grocery store the other day, I realized that when coming to a home, like here in Singapore for almost one month of house- and cat sitting, we bring only a few things and most of how this month is going to play out with activities, routines and food depends both on the setting and our choices.

image

Bronson and I doing yoga

Here’s the deal; as humans we tend to stick to routines and habits. It’s often easy, convenient and sometimes effective to put on the shoes in the same order every time, to cook the same type of food, to manage the day in pretty much the same way as the day before… Therefore we might get stuck and forget that we can make new decisions and change things whenever we want. Usually we “save” those changes or decisions for “The Future”, a new year, fresh school semester, the summer holidays, next Monday or whenever seems to be a good time and day for a new beginning.

Picture: oldenglishprints.com

Picture: oldenglishprints.com

Anders and I go from place to place visiting locations and people we’re not familiar with, which gives us physical, hands-on invitations to make changes – when everything around us is new it’s up to us to choose how to tackle it. In Bali we stayed in five different places within four weeks: that makes a lot of new beginnings!

image

Trying out local shopping in Bali

Before coming here to Singapore we had set an intention of using the swimming pool and swim regularly, we had decided not to drink alcohol and to cook food bought at the market as one way of keeping a budget while staying in an expensive city (plus we have missed not having a kitchen). Another intention was to try the smaller, simpler food stands and ‘hawker centers’ for local food experiences. This far, we have done all of that, one step at a time, even though it might have been easier to choose differently at times.

image

Tiong Bahru hawker center

So, we have some sort of “help” in making new beginnings by physically changing settings often, and at the same time we meet other travelers who rarely step out of their habits; always sticking with their preferred way of doing things, their favorite foods, only talking to people from the same country and so on. Hereby I want to state that you can travel around the world ten times and not learn or do anything different, and you can stay in the exact same spot for years and make tons of changes – we have met those open-minded, curious people too.

image

New breakfast choices: banana, pumpkin seeds, oats and soy milk

In Bali where I had hoped to be able to walk a lot, it was a bit hard to find good places for just plain walking, so I had to do things differently than I was used to and had hoped for. When coming to Singapore I was used to buying lots of fresh, local fruit at good prices, and yet the very first day I was pushed off that trail when seeing the prices at the fancy super market in a shopping mall. Now, there are other markets where one can get fresh produce at more reasonable prices, but my first encounter was a knock down.

image

Tiong Bahru wet market

image

Shopping at the wet market

So, in closing, even though it might seem easier to make changes when the calendar switches to a new year, or when our physical place is new or different – there’s almost always a choice how to spend our money, use our body, time and what we make of our lives.

With love,
Wivan

image

Nacho night in the apartment

1. Start very small.
2. Do only one change at a time.
3. Be present and enjoy the activity (don’t focus on results).
4. Be grateful for every step you take.

– Leo Babauta –

image

The pool, used frequently by us

image

Lunch at hawker center

One of those days

image

"My" new room

Now I’ve landed in Kristianstad where I’ll be working the coming weeks. Settled in at a new place I get to stay in while our friend who lives here is working in another city.

It’s Sunday, the weather has been shifting and I’ve been nervous before getting here and starting at work =  tired person. And very happy to be able to lay down on a sofa after traveling, biking, shopping and meeting all kinds of people.

Now relaxing and feeling comfortable, knowing things will turn out well tomorrow. Oh, I am grateful to live this super good life of mine!

Thanks ❤

//Wivan

image