A vanless detour 

  

So we finally made a decision, sort of. We’ve almost definitely made some kind of decision. And we’ve booked a ferry… to Ireland.

Confused? Welcome to my world. After a chilly week at the farm, some overdue research on European climates, and a very vivid dream about a Balinese rice paddy, we’ve decided we’re not going to mainland Europe for the winter afterall. We’re going to Asia instead. 

I guess if you know us well you’re currently rolling your eyes at the predictability of it all, but in all honesty the decision has come as quite a surprise to me. I’m sure if Rodney hadn’t taken the film work things would be very different- we’d have been in Europe for months already. We’d be bronzed and beautiful (subjectively speaking) after multiple heatwaves, and we’d be looking forward to some cooler temperatures. Instead we’ve spent the summer chasing rain and mostly freezing our arses off. So winter, albeit a mild winter in Southern Europe, suddenly feels as appealing as a dog shit facial (I’m sure such a thing exists!?). And as my dear ol’ mother always says, ‘when life gives you lemons, go to Bali!’ (she has never said this, but she would if she’d ever been to Bali).

I woke up on Wednesday morning, the warmth of the imagined Balinese sun still lingering on my skin, took a look at the repti-thermometer (7 degrees) and the decision was made.  Rodney took zero time to convince and is now insisting it was all his idea. 

We’re taking the van back to Northern Ireland on Nov 8 to store it for the winter and then we hope to fly out later in the month. All we need to decide now is where exactly we’re going to go in Asia (other than Bali) and for how long. Europe should be starting to warm up nicely by March (I think) so we’d like to be back by then, bronzed and beautiful (😁), to pick up where we left off.

I shall continue to blog about our travels, van or no van, because as my dear ol’ mother always says ‘when life gives you Bali, blog about it’. 

Wise words mum.

Here’s a quick update on the past couple of weeks:

I got a job as a fruit picker. It’s been keeping me out of trouble (and boredom)…

  
  

But I’m a bit of a slacker so I eventually roped Rodney into doing most of the work for me…

   
 
He looks delighted. 

We’ve had the field all to ourselves this month as other campers retreated to their bricks and mortar (clever bar stewards)…

  

Most days my only company is this little myxomatosis-suffering rabbit…

  
Poor chap.

We went to the ferret races, and now Rodney wants a ferret…

 

I went on a London bus for the first time in six months. A lady was cutting her finger nails, loudly. Clippings flying everywhere. Cuticle Carnage. I took a picture…  

 

We continue to enjoy our vegetarian BBQs…  

It started to get very cold in the mornings…

 

We decided to go to Asia for winter instead of Europe, which means my little European vegetable display is a little redundant…

 

Shame.

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Three months in (a van)

  

So it’s now been over three months since we moved into the van and made our way to England. And we didn’t kill each other yet, so that’s something! Yay!

I should probably stop joking about murder. Just in case Rodney has a mysterious accident with, say, an alternator belt (plausible) and somehow strangles himself. It might look suspicious. 

So yes, three months. Three bizarre months. Whose idea was it to give up everything and move into a f*cking van? Ah yes, that would be me. In all honesty when I came up with this plan I envisaged myself bronzed and goddess-like, swinging on a hammock on a deserted beach in the med whilst Rodney caught fish with his bare hands and fed me grapes (after washing his fishy hands) and fanned me with a palm leaf. Later we’d get pissed around a raging campfire whilst Rodney strummed a happy tune and I’d say ‘look Rodney, a shooting star!’ and… you get the picture. 

As it is I’m just sat in a van, on a cold muddy farm, in England, in October, alone, trying to get a better signal and willing Rodney’s film to wrap early so we can escape to warmer climes before I a. go mad, b. freeze to death (and get eaten by the farmer’s slightly unhinged dog) or c. strangle Rodney with an alternator belt (and feed him to said dog). Hey, these things happen. 

I’ve delayed writing this post because I wanted to be able to share news of booked ferries and plans coming together. (I’m sighing heavily as I laboriously type this on my phone). I’ve basically got no news. The film schedule changes day to day and it could be one more week or maybe even six, so I can’t book anything. It’s ridiculous. My advice to any ‘resting’ actor is to leave London and make really exciting travel plans. I promise you, your phone will not stop ringing with offers of work. I think they call it Sod’s law.

I’d like to say that I was making the most of all this me time, but it turns out I’m very, very lazy when left to my own devices. The only thing I’ve achieved this summer is making four little curtains for the van. It took me three months, and I made them out of existing bloody curtains. 

I contemplated writing a novel, but like most people who contemplate such a thing I stared at a blank word document for five minutes before declaring the project a failure and moving on to new projects, such as ‘how many biscuits can I dunk in my tea before all the tea is gone?’

God I’m bored. 

So anyway you’ll not hear from me again until we have a concrete departure date and news of our travel plans. This is supposed to be a travel blog after all.

In the meantime, here’s some pics from the last month…

 Rodney went to Iceland to “work”… 
   

Here he is high-fiving his new BFF…

 

I took my bored, lazy arse to Cornwall, and had a fairly pleasant week eating ice cream and playing with my Ma’s disobedient dog…

 
  
  
   
    
 
 

But eventually it was time to return to the van, and the farm…

 
  
  
   

And to Rodney, who appears to have become very patriotic…
 
  

And to the news that we just became an uncle (Fester) and auntie again, to this wee superstar…

   
  

The first girl to be born into the Tosh family for over fifty years! Awwwwww!

It’s now getting cold enough for woolly hats, indoors…

  
   

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr!

Did I mention that we ran out of gas again?

Must have slipped my frozen mind!

Laters