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Have you ever wondered why I decided to name my blog “Can-Will-Did”? Have you ever wondered what the story behind all this is? Whether your answer is “yes” or “no”, I reckon everyone should get to know my life-changing story. Well, let me start from the beginning…
When I arrived in Australia, I was the most insecure person you could imagine, trying to pretend to be brave and independent while I still decided to keep my travels as safe as possible, only sticking to organized group tours and busses. While it was the most comfortable option, I always had some sort of gut feeling telling me that this is not what I want to be. I wanted to be self-confident, I wanted to be flexible and most importantly, I wanted to be different from the rest! Easier said than done. There was something holding me back. Something, that is not easy to get rid of: it’s the bubble, called “comfort zone”, that way too many people are stuck in. So, what was I supposed to do? I knew I wouldn’t just be able to get out of my comfort zone that easily. I had been stuck in it for way too long.
Thanks to me being an ambitious person, wanting to achieve whatever got in my mind, I decided to buy my first ever own car. Back in Germany, I was a terribly insecure driver and barely got any practice. Thus, buying a manual, having to drive on the “wrong side” of the road, didn’t seem to be the cleverest idea, but there was a drive in me that turned me into a confident driver, driving all sorts of vehicles on the “wrong side” of the road.
Yet, there was still something inside of me that told me, that I wanted more. I wanted to tackle challenging roads, in order to get to the most remote places, I wanted to learn how to four-wheel-drive, I wanted to experience the Australia that no one else gets to experience. Unfortunately, something held me back. It was society telling me that my car wasn’t good enough for what I had put in my mind. Society told me that I wouldn’t make it across the “Gibb River Road” in a little Subaru. People told me I wouldn’t be able to get to all four of Australia’s extremities in my little Suby. “What if you break down in the middle of nowhere?”, was one of the most-raised questions I always got to hear. And I believed them. I believed what they told me must be right as it was society telling me and society is always right.
That was, at least, what I had always believed; until one special person changed my whole attitude on life. I met Anthony about a year ago in a small place called “Hamelin Pool” in Shark Bay, Western Australia. He offered me work in a caravan park, where I got to know him and his story. Anthony is an Aussie, travelling around Australia himself. But unlike other people, he doesn’t follow the crowds. In his 4wd, he goes wherever he wants, following the most remote and challenging tracks. But it was his attitude on life that made me think and lit a fire in my soul that has never died ever since. “Can, Will, Did, Kunt” is his motto. People tell you you can’t – you go and prove them wrong! You wanna go somewhere – you go there! There is no “what if” – there is only “ah well”.
During a trip to “Steep Point” Australia’s westernmost point, he did not only teach me everything I needed to know about four-wheel-driving, he also taught me confidence. He taught me how to break free and only listen to myself, instead of what society wants you to do. He taught me that I can do anything, even if I don’t have the fanciest equipment. During the trip, we got banned from the National Park as Anthony’s ute didn’t have working brakes, but instead of turning around and giving up, he kept going. He didn’t care what society told him to do. He had one aim in mind and that was to reach “Steep Point”. And we did! Despite, all the trouble! Thanks to Anthony’s advises and encouragement, I did not only tackle the iconic “Gibb River Road”, but also travelled up 800ks of highly corrugated dirt road, all the way to the tip of Australia and back, I attempted several “four-wheel-drive-only” tracks. Sometimes, things didn’t go as planned, but I always gave it a go. There is no “I can’t”, there is only “I can”!
The best reward I could get is the facial expressions and reactions of people seeing what I’ve achieved. It doesn’t only make me feel extremely proud, it also gives me a satisfying feeling of confidence. I have never been at this stage I am at now. And if I hadn’t met Anthony, I’d probably still be stuck in my bubble, with an utterly feeling of regret.
Now, about a year later, both, Anthony and me, are still continuing doing whatever we want, proving as many people wrong as possible. While Anthony is crossing rivers, instead of taking vehicle-ferries in Australia, I’m finding my way around New Zealand, just having finished my first ever novel, bringing my own little motto and lifestyle (Dare Yourself – Prove them wrong!) to life. The road has never been easy, for neither of us. We both had to go through hell and back. But giving up has never been an option and never will be! Whatever will happen in the future, I’m sure Anthony will inspire many more people and we will meet again in the future to take on the world.
I hope the story inspires you to get up and live life! I won’t say it’s easy, cause it’s not. But if you never do what YOU want, you’ll never be able to say that you’re truly content!
GET UP! CAN-WILL-DID!!
If there’s one thing I’ve learnt, my life is a lie.
No, I’m not a lier, but I’ve got no other choice.
You wanna know the truth, the truth that society expects to hear.
There’s nothing quite wrong but it doesn’t feel right.
If there’s one thing I’ve learnt, I’m living a lie.
Every day the same thing. My palms get sweaty and the uneasy feeling stays as the day goes by.
My soul is dying to break free, but I know it ain’t right.
Who wrote the book on goodbyes?
If there’s one thing I know, my mind is a mess.
Pretending to be guilt-free, as the next lie leaves my lips.
You ask me how I am, what parts of the world I’ve seen and yet there is still one question still unasked.
It’s the same answers every single time. Why do we even bother asking?
If there’s one thing I feel, it’s the pain in my chest.
It happened again. Don’t your roots keep holding you back?
We all know the answer, but yet I don’t know what to say. Do I spit it out?
It’s me and my mind alone.
If there’s one thing I do, it’s the tears that I dry.
People are not bothered. Yet they still want to hear. But if I told them the truth, they’d pretend to be empathetic.
Yet, people don’t care, keep that in mind.
Society is not meant to have people sticking out of the crowd.
But what if I told you, the one thing I’ve learnt.
If you wanna break free, speak up and be proud.
You’re looking for help? You’re looking for support? You’re looking for an open ear?
People do care and it’s okay to be down.
We all play our own little game, paused on different levels.
Although neither wants to admit it, we’re all fighting the same devils.
Would you classify yourself as a rather anti-social person and find it hard to meet locals. Or are you simply just disappointed, that you’re surrounded by people from your own nation, although you came to a foreign country to get to know the locals? Well, I’ve got some tips for you! I’m probably the most anti-social person among you, but I still managed to meet heaps of locals, that turned into friends for life!
1. AirBnb. The best way to meet locals is to stay with them and to experience their lifestyle. The easiest option to get in touch with them, if you don’t have any contacts is using certain Apps. AirBnB is perfect for booking cheap rooms and apartments. Perfect, if you want to have some privacy for a little while, after spending the majority of your time in hostels.
2. Couchsurfing. If you can’t afford to book a private room, couchsurfing is the best solution. Why? Because it’s totally free. In exchange for a few good chats, eventually a meal and a few tips and advises, locals let you stay on their “couch” for a couple of nights. Although people might find it risky, I am a huge fan of the app, having made some great friends!
3. Get out of the city. It’s almost impossible to get to know the locals when you spend the majority of your time in cities. Everybody is busy working or rushing to catch the next bus. It’s a lot more likely to meet people in smaller towns, where the atmosphere is completely different and everyone is just so much more welcoming!
4. Not everybody has bad intentions. This is pretty much the basic rule, you need to follow. If you want to make friends, you need to change your attitude: Not everybody wants to harm you! You surely, need to take precautions every now and then, but most people out there want to help you and are more than happy to meet someone international!
5. No fruitpicking. When it comes to jobs, I can recommend turning your back to the usually typical “Backpacker jobs” like fruitpicking. If you want to experience a welcoming atmosphere and true local lifestyle, other farm work, like outback station work, is what you should look for.
6. Be yourself. You don’t have to be an outgoing and social person to meet new people. Being an introvert can sometimes even be a perk. I have experienced, that locals often come to you and invite you over, when you seem to be insecure or lost. Don’t forget: Not everybody has bad intentions! There is always a way!
Dare Yourself – Prove them wrong!
P.S.: Only two more days of work and I’ll be back on the road! Which means, my blog posts will get a lot longer again!!
Have you ever been debating, whether or not you should take the big step and start your adventure into the unknown? It’s okay to be scared! I will give you 6 reasons, why you should buy that plane ticket!
1. You would regret it. Never ever reject a big opportunity. If you won’t take chances, you will regret it big time! It will happen sooner or later and who wants to grow old, thinking about the things, we didn’t do, when we had the chance?!
2. It will change you. You might not believe it, but travelling will actually change you to the goood! It might not change your character magically, turning you into the person, that you always wanted to be, but it will certainly make you a whole lot more independent and daring!
3. No Uni can teach you what you learn in a foreign country. You think you need to get far in life? Well, let me tell you a thing: No Uni can teach you, what you learn during your travels. Because it’s not the theoretical things, that you learned from books, that makes you intelligent. You learn a lot more about culture and life, that no one could teach you but yourself!
4. It’s the only ever way to get over stereotypes. If you never give new cultures and nationalities a chance, you will always keep your judgemental attitudes, giving you a hard time in life. The best way to rethink all these stereotypes, that are out there, is to make your own image of the situation!
5. You will make heaps of international friends. Number 4. goes hand in hand with number 5. The more you interact with other nationalities, the more international friends you will make. How amazing is it to know, that you know people from all over the world, that are waiting for you to visit them in their home country!
6. You’re too young to waste your life being stuck in one place. Let’s be honest. Life is not about being stuck in one place and working every day until we die. What do we save up for, if we never do something with our savings? Even if you don’t have any savings, it’s definitely possible to just go out there and live life! We were not meant to stay in one place when there is a whole world to be explored!
Buy the plane ticket!
Dare Yourself – Prove them wrong!
Little Update: My book is going great! I’m getting closer and closer to finishing the story. Other than that, we have been celebrating “Guy Fawkes”, which is an English thing, to everyone, who doesn’t know it. It was great, with fireworks, campfire and BBQ! Plus, I had to find out, that my car battery is wrecked. Great way to lose all the money, that I just saved up because it’s not only the battery, it’s also WOF, oil change and service, that needs to be done… 9 more days and I will be back on the road!
What’s up? Still everything as normal here on the farm. Well, to be honest, I got pretty sick (happens, when you work in the rain :P). It’s really annoying. Especially, when you work 7 days a week and getting a day off is not that simple. But not long and I’m finally free! To be honest, it’s quite tough for me here at the moment. People are going through a divorce and I’m somewhere in between. There is no happiness here in this house at the moment. It’s quite depressing.
Before I get into the article, I would like to point out, that someone actually printed one of my photos on canvas! Feels awesome to know, that someone likes my photos that much! Although it was not even one of my best photos, I’m still happy with the result:
All right, here we go! 10 things, we all must admit having done at least once:
1. Washing your clothes in the shower and drying them with a hairdryer. Yep, that’s right. It saves you a lot of money for the expensive machines, that can cost up to 5$ per wash in Australia. Unfortunately, the washing machines don’t really do a good job, which is why I would never attempt to wash white or expensive. To be honest, most of my clothes are old, full of holes or from Kmart anyway. 😛
2. Stealing clothes other people forgot in hostels. Clothes are far too expensive. Moreover, we don’t want to waste money on new clothes, if there are so many adventures, that we could spend money on instead. Luckily, the cleaning staff in hostels often forgets to check underneath the beds, which is where many people forget their clothes. It’s simple: Wash it, wear it, it’s yours! Jackpot! No one would come back to claim back an old shirt, that has been sitting underneath the bed for months!
3. Fixing thongs with duct tape. Who needs shoes, when something like thongs exists. To the inventor of the thongs: You are a genius! Unfortunately, most of them don’t last forever. Especially not the 3$ thongs, that you pulled out of the vending machine. This is where duct tape comes in handy! Never would we think of getting rid of them! No, we fix them and wear them with pride. What about the old put-an-old-bread-bag-clip-underneath-the-thong-trick, hey? You all know, what I’m talking about.
4. Sitting in front of buildings to steal wifi. If there is no library in reachable distance, most of us wouldn’t hesitate to sit in front of restaurants and buildings to get some of their free wifi. Even, if that underlines our homelessness even more. Data are fairly expensive and sometimes, you need to switch your priorities around a bit.
5. If it’s free – you take it, no matter whether you need it or not. Number one rule of backpacking! The word “free” turns into your absolute favourite word when you’re living on a tight budget!
6. Being willing to spend the night on a freezing bus/ train. It’s cheaper than a flight, plus, you save on a night’s accommodation fee. So why would we not spend the night in a super uncomfortable, freezing bus, with no chance to find any sleep? Makes total sense to me!
7. You love to experiment to find out about the best travel hacks. As a traveller, you sometimes need to get creative in order to get a through. Throughout the years, we have developed the most creative travel hacks, that should be awarded. Let me give you an example: You don’t need a stove! When the kitchen is busy, you might as well take the cattle into your room and boil your eggs in the cattle. Thank me later 😀
8. You know more mechanics than National Parks. As much as we live our home on wheels, they are usually a waste of money. They are old and have done way too many ks. Plus, the need regular oil changes. Oh, and what was that rattling noise, that recently kicked in? Mechanics become your new best friend. Whether they rip you off or not, you tend to get really dependent on them, wherever you go.
9. You regret having taken so much stuff with you. Before you leave, you can’t imagine, how you could possibly survive on “so little”, but after you arrive, you will soon realize, that you have packed WAY too much. You will start to get rid of unnecessary stuff like hair dryers and that third pair of shoes. Carrying around an over-heavy backpack is not funny, trust me!
10. You’re never gonna feel “home” again. This is what travelling is all about. We lose our hearts in a certain place and wish, that we wouldn’t have to leave the country at some point. Well, the day usually comes sooner than expected. But once we’re home, we notice, that this isn’t “home” anymore. Our home is somewhere else, on the other side of the globe ❤
Don’t forget to smile,