Iâ€™ve been asking myself this question for the last few days. One of the things I’m looking forward to most is blogging about this trip, but I don’t really know where to start. I began jacsjourney.com for my first solo trip to Vietnam in 2006, and continued with my year round the world in 2007-08. But this is now. My life has moved on. Do I need to fill in all the blanks? Tell you all the in-between news? Best not, I think. Well, maybe just the highlights. The main thing is to share the highs and lows of this trip â€“ 3 and Â½ weeks in Indonesia.
Yup, Iâ€™m back on the road again. Itâ€™s been a while. I sat in Kuala Lumpur International Airport waiting to fly to Bali and thought about writing my first travel blog in so long. What do I have to say about how Iâ€™ve grown, what Iâ€™ve learned and how Iâ€™ve changed since my last blog post? I gave my achievements a thorough going over.
It was pretty cool to realise that on my round the world trip, my dream was to come home and set up my own business. It didn’t happen right away, but Jackie Daly Ltd has now been trading for 9 months and Iâ€™m on my first between contracts trip. I reflected on the life Iâ€™ve made for myself in London â€“ wonderful new and old friends, doing lots of things I love like running, cycling, diving, theatre, galleries and writing, living in a great flat (thatâ€™s being refurbished while Iâ€™m away) in an area I love, and the flexibility Iâ€™m creating for myself through interim and freelance work. It’s not been the easiest 2 and Â½ years but boy, do I love what I’m making of my life.
There you go. Them there were the in-between highlights.
So, this trip. After two frantic weeks of finishing my contract at Mothercare, packing up my flat, putting most of it into storage and moving into my temporary home, building work began on the flat and I took off to Indonesia.
I had been so busy that arriving in Kuala Lumpur was a bit of a surprise. I’d decided to make it up depending how I felt when I arrived. If knackered, Iâ€™d find an airport hotel. If not, Iâ€™d go and explore. A decent kip thanks to a poor manâ€™s upgrade (3 seats in a row, all to myself) saw me heading to KL Sentral and on to the Petronas Towers. It was an early start next morning (up at 5am) so KL didnâ€™t have much time to make an impression. Which is probably why it didnâ€™t. Sprawling, lots of shops, super-fast train to the airport about sums it up for me.
What I really loved about KL was its reminder of the highs and lows of independent travel. After two â€œSorry, weâ€™re fullâ€ conversations with hotel receptionists, I lugged my backpack further down the busy road. Pumping horns and stinking exhausts made 30 degrees seem even hotter and I could hear my Dadâ€™s voice, â€œYou should have booked something in advance.â€ Nah, sweat running down your 18 kilo laden back is where itâ€™s at, Dad.
And so I juddered back into my backpacker groove. And on to Indonesiaâ€¦