The phrase "digital nomad" gets thrown out a lot in my world these days. If not in the physical circles in which I travel - most of my peeps have mortgages and non-telecommuting, structured day jobs, and several have children - then definitely in many of the online spaces I frequent. I encounter more and more people these days via blogs and social networking sites whose offices are their laptops and who open their eyes in different places many mornings.
My laptop is my office and I've awakened in more than 15 different rooms this year. So far. With very little planning on my part, my life has indeed taken on some of the definitions of "digital nomad."
But my version of nomad-esque living has seen me with one foot in both worlds. Which is to say I often settle in to house-sitting or renting a room for months at a time and begin to feel semi-settled for long stretches. Of course that's okay - it's a way of life that's defined by its unconventionality and uniqueness. I suppose The Nomad gets to decide what her particular version of the journey looks like.
Now that this more mobile stretch has geared up again, it occurs to me that there's value in considering That Other Approach, too. The approach that actually takes the word "Planning" into consideration. In looking at some of the options I'm considering for this summer, the likelihood of hauling things through airports rather than seeing just how much I am "my father's daughter" by fitting one more thing into the trunk of my trusty Toyota, seems imminent.
I'm both frightened and elated at the idea of learning to pack light. Resources abound. Close friends have hiked the Appalachian Trail and the Camino de Santiago and I've watched in amazement as they discarded yet one more item that would weigh them down on their way.
There are no hiking trails beckoning. I am a girl who likes her conveniences. But I'm willing to consider that it's not vital to have all the conveniences of my life at my very fingertips (or outside in a parking lot, in the trunk of my car.)
So today as I head out to start a 10 day house-sitting stretch in what, it must be admitted, is among the most comfortable settings I've ever spent time in, I'm recognizing the familiar twinge of what just might be A Formulating Plan. While at my friends' home, I'll have the luxury of beautiful, quiet surroundings with proimity to Greensboro friends and clients only a half hour away, I'm pricing plane tickets... and peeking into luggage that hold clunky bottles and bags, and wondering. What can I live without?
At least for a while!