Gathering Stories-The Writer As Mindful Meanderer

'The world is a book and those who do not travel only read one page.' 

This quote is attributed to St Augustine and it sings to me. Especially now.

Following a time of sustained sadness for our family with the death of a close friend, it is time to undertake some travel that is not only informative, but equally, restorative. In the dark times it is important to look out into the world and notice what is human and magical and alive with promise, despite the dark days that may have surrounded you.

So with such true words ringing in my ears, it's time for some mindful meandering. It's time to seek out some brightness and shake things up a bit and embrace any available joy that may present.

As a writer I am very much aware of the special gift that travelling brings a writer. It turns each of us into storytellers. Therefore it is important to take a break every now and then and just go somewhere. Leave behind your life and all its baggage for a short time and travel to a new place and be anonymous.

Some reasons to travel:
To learn
To have adventures
To meet new people
To feel even more alive
To know yourself a little better
To experience other cultures
To step out of your comfort zone
To challenge yourself
To gain a different perspective
To be brave

So, while leaving much of my life at home (for a while), I will take my writer's notebook, my camera, some books and my very best travel buddy, Vicki with me and give myself totally to these new moments. I won't fret and worry about my usual life because once the plane takes off, fretting about home matters is wasted energy. I must look forward to the month awaiting us in Vietnam. 

It will be time to be a close observer of this ancient and fascinating country to Australia's north. Time to be a traveller and writer in the collection zone. Time to experience new places, new adventures, new food. Time to meet new people and learn about their lives, dreams and aspirations. This is research. This is exploration and being a curious learner. This is fun!

My new notebook, primed and ready to receive.
I even have a brand new notebook ready to receive my words. I have packed a plentiful supply of pens and am anticipating times where I can sit among people in my new surroundings and breathe in the life around me. The writer as observer comes to the fore here.

I very much look forward to the gathering of new stories. Meet you back here next month.

Scenes from our previous visit to Vietnam, Hoi An, 2015


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