Category Archives: Getting unstuck

Weekly wisdom – the best of intentions

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“I may not have gone
where I intended to go,
but I think I have ended up
where I intended to be.”

 Douglas Adams

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

#streetartvalencia

On the streets of Valencia, Spain (Artist Unknown)


Night moves in Seville

It’s been a few years (um, decades) since we’ve been out on the streets past midnight – but Seville does that to you.

This city literally comes to life at about eight o’clock at night. And by ten, the locals come out to move from bar to bar with friends, enjoying one tapas and one drink at each place (well, that’s the idea anyway).

It takes bar crawls to a whole civilised and delicious new level – and it’s a way of eating, drinking and socialising that fits us perfectly.

Even the late nights feel early, perhaps because the sun stays up late too.

And there’s always those ‘recovery’ sleep-ins, because nobody emerges until at least ten in the morning. Except a few of the keen tourists of course.

More about this fabulous city later. It’s getting late – which means it’s time for us to hit the streets… adiós for now!

image


Tasty tip: We went on the excellent Seville Gourmet Wine and Tapas Tour with Manuel from Pancho Tours (booked with Viator). A great way to get familiar with the tapas scene and hang out with like-minded vino and food lovers.


Taking flight… soon

In a few days we’ll be literally on the flight path as we take off on our 10 week trip to Portugal and Spain, with stops along the way in Japan, Switzerland, Morocco and Singapore.

And, of course, the pre-travel madness has set in.

What is it about travel that makes you get everything done before you go? Talk about emptying the in-tray. Sheesh.

I mean, all we’ve been doing these past few weeks is renovating our house (at least it’s lockable now!), closing EB’s business (after 30 years, because he’s over it… wait, that happened 29 years ago), getting my own work projects wrapped up before I go, and all the usual family dramas (mostly the mother/granny-lou-thing about leaving them for over 2 months).

I’m exhausted already.

And did I mention the packing dilemma? Our trip will involve lots of train hopping, so travelling light is the only way to go. Between us we have two cabin-size bags and a couple of small backpacks… and even that feels like too much!

So the countdown is on. Just a little bit excited now. See you on the flight path…


A fresh page to write your adventures

Copyright: Louise CreelyIt’s easy to get to the end of a year and wonder where your resolutions went. If you’re like me, you left them at the gym about mid-January.

But don’t despair. This is the perfect time to write your ‘done list’. The big, small, easy, fear-facing, clever, inspired or a little bit dull kind of stuff you actually did in 2015.

Even if it was buying that bike ready for your touring adventures or sticking at swimming when you still feel like a whale caught in a shark net…

Because if you look at what you’ve done, not the un-conquered to-do list, then you’ll feel a whole lot better about you and your life. And that has to be a good thing.

Someday soon you’re going to pack up that touring bike and head off, or have your mermaid or merman moment.

Whatever it is you’re dreaming about, start now – in a great leap or small steps.

Today you turn to a fresh page. It’s time to start writing your adventure story.

Copyright: Louise Creely


First stop, Surry Hills

Copyright: Louise Creely

Last weekend we took a quick trip to Sydney to try out a tandem touring bike (as you do), to catch up with family and, the unplanned bit, to fall in love with Surry Hills.

Located on the city fringe, adjacent to notorious Kings Cross and right near Central Station, Surry Hills was once a bit of a slum area.

Today, it’s a melting pot of cultures, with a delicious retro, arty, entrepreneurial flavour – a happening place that has a village feel and a real sense of community.

Copyright: Louise Creely

Sunday breakfast in Surry Hills

Wander along its tree-lined streets window-shopping, then stop for a coffee (or vino) to watch the world go by.

It’s the perfect way to spend a lazy afternoon – and you’re likely to be served by switched-on wait staff, who are easy going and up for a chat.

If you’re keen to see some great parts of Sydney on foot (I’m with EB, so keen or not…) take a stroll past the Domain to Mrs Macquarie’s Chair, then walk along the foreshores of Farm Cove to the Opera House, and back through the city to Surry Hills.

Of course, you can always take the civilised option and jump on a train to Circular Quay to catch a ferry around the harbour… but this 1.5 hour easy walk is worth every step.

The ‘civilised’ option comes later at one of our favourite restaurants, Longrain. It’s just down the road from our hotel and a perfectly delicious way to end a great stay in Surry Hills.

Copyright: Louise Creely

Fort Denison is a former penal colony and defensive facility

Copyright: Louise Creely

A swim with a view – a battle ship docked at the Garden Island Defense Base


Follow your bliss…

We recently went back to Hobart for a few days to sort out an issue with tenants – and to revel in that feeling that we’ve come ‘home’, if only briefly. We’ve wanted to make a move here for six years now, but we  keep putting it off until ‘the time is right’.

Copyright: Louise Creely

It’s a sign (on a building in Hobart). It’s up to us to make stuff happen. We have to create our own story…

Copyright: Louise CreelyThere are moments in your life when you realise you just have to do this thing – plan it, work towards it or just take the leap. Because if you don’t, you’d better get used to living with regret.

And who wants to be 80-something and wishing you took the risk when you had the chance.

The ‘thing’ could be travel, a business venture, changing places or all of the above, like us.

The risk is clear for us – going to a city where we have no jobs (or, in my case, no clients), and missing our family and friends.

Copyright: Louise Creely

Blooming gorgeous…

What I wish for, when we do take that leap, is that our children might not hesitate when faced with a choice in their future – that they’ll be less risk averse and more likely to follow their bliss.

Copyright: Louise RalphBecause sometimes you’ve got to look beyond all the rational reasons and enticing excuses, to the place you need to be and the stuff you need to do to feed your soul.

And here’s another thing… choice is a privilege, and being torn between living in a gorgeous coastal town in northern NSW or a fresh and fabulous city in Tasmania is a blessing, when so many have no choice and no place to call home.

 

 

There’s never
a right time to leap…
there is only belief.


Here’s just some of the reasons we love Hobart and Tassie…

Copyright: Louise Creely

Salamanca markets always give me a sense of possibilities – the relaxed, creative energy entices me back every time and inspires the artist in me…

Copyright: Louise Creely

The water, the air and the food are so fresh and delicious! Coal River Farm (top) has just opened and has delicious cheese, chocolate and other treats. It’s just up the road from our favourite Frogmore Creek Winery – and they’ve got a sensational new menu, including these stunning dumplings (bottom left) and perfect riesling (middle). Back in Salamanca, Cargo has the most amazing Hoi Sin Duck Pizza (right).

Copyright: Louise Creely

TRADE at Brooke Street Pier in Hobart is a market space showcasing unique Tasmanian products and experiences – cheese, wine, whisky, cider, salmon, art, design, jewellery and more. You can also jump on a cruise or ferry here, to places like Mona, Peppermint Bay Cruise and Port Arthur.

Copyright: Louise Creely

We love the village atmosphere here – and those stunning blossoms in spring.

Copyright: Louise Creely

…we’ll be back


Five for Friday: getting unstuck

Copyright: Louise RalphI’ve been thinking a lot about ‘stuckness’ this week, and what keeps us in that immovable yet frantically busy place where we just don’t have the time to do the things that make our spirits soar.

Perhaps it’s a kind of dysfunctional aspiration, where we’re literally buying into the myth that we have to work our butts off to get money, so we can get more cool stuff – and then struggle to pay off the debts we’re drowning in.

We’re constantly bombarded with messages that tell us if we get this thing or that thing, we’ll be happy.

Except happiness is usually in the other direction – in a life where you live with less, especially less stress. Where you don’t surround yourself with mostly useless stuff, and you don’t live to work so you can consume more useless stuff. And you get time, every day, to paint or write or surf or paddle… or whatever it is that you love to do.

So here’s my five for Friday:

  1. Reflect – instead of being consumed with busyness, take time out to reflect. To think about the things that really make you feel awesomely fulfilled.
  2. Be brutal – when you look at your life and how you live, work out what you really need to survive. Because most of us have a skewed perception of what we need versus what we want.
  3. Take the challenge – if you’re in a ‘stuff’ rut and your place looks like Hoarder Central, start to streamline fast, and then practice living with less. There’s something satisfying about selling or gifting things you don’t need, but someone else might! 
  4. Get real – we often run around frantically because we don’t want to face our fears. Sometimes we’re so smart, we get into more debt or more busyness because then we’ve got the perfect excuse not to make the change… (guilty, we are!)
  5. Make the change – it’s usually fear that holds us back from making those big changes – what if it turns out to be an epic fail? But… what if it turns out to be the best thing you’ve ever done in your life?

Copyright: Louise RalphFor us, it’s about adjusting the aspirations we’ve been sucked into (often willingly yet naively), so we can start living the life we’ve imagined.

With so much less, but ultimately so much more of everything important to us.

Especially time – time to look after our health, to hang out with family and friends, to take on the projects we love, to give something back to our community, and to explore our world… on a shoestring (or a bike).

We’re working on getting unstuck. Starting now. How about you?

Happy Friday!