Well, this past year has been a wild ride. I have been back in the US for about a month and will soon head back to Africa on January 3rd. Chasing a dream is hard work. Since first stepping foot on the African continent in 2004, I knew I had to spend at least one year of my life living in Africa. That took more than a decade and one previous, unsuccessful attempt about five years ago. This was a non-negotiable, a “What if” that I could not take to my grave, something that I had to do in this lifetime.
Nairobi seemed to be the most logical place for a home base, as I wanted to spend as much time out in the field, in Kenya, as possible. However, I have discovered, at this point in my life, I don’t need to purposely make the challenges of life even harder; no electricity, no heat, no internet, no water, no family or friends, etc. It is easy to accept and deal with these issues in the bush, but when you come off the road and are only going to be in town for a few weeks, you need to be efficient, especially when running a business that is not on Africa time…LOL. In the year+ I was living in Kenya, I only spent about 8-10 weeks in total in Nairobi. As my lease came up, I started looking into other options. Since the miracle answer did not reveal itself before my deadline, I decided to let my place go and figure it out while I was back in the US for the holidays.
I still have my Landy and my residency, but since I am literally on the road for over 300 days of the year and rarely lay my head on the same pillow for more than two straight weeks, I started to think it did not make sense for me to really live in any one place. As my 2016 travel schedule looks set to be crazier than 2015, I have decided to remain a nomad for most of the year. Theoretically, I will still be “living” somewhere in Kenya for 6 months of the year. When I am not leading safaris, working on projects, or off the beaten path somewhere else on the African Continent, I will be a photographer in resident in the Maasai Mara, living in Bush Camp, owned by SunWorld Safaris. In the few weeks, here and there, when I am in America, I will visit friends and family across the US, including Alaska! As the song by Metallica goes, “Where I lay my head is home.”
Letting go of the notion that I have to live somewhere seems to agree with my gypsy spirit and has really unleashed the wild, adventurous, creative side of myself. I will be forging new ground this year, creating some incredible, unforgettable experiences and photographic opportunities for you in 2017. Those of you who have traveled with me know I not only push hard to create amazing photographic opportunities, but I also like to go beyond the photo and make sure you have an unforgettable journey filled with unique experiences, the ones you will reminisce about over a cold one when telling stories in the rocking chair.
Have a wonderful Holiday Season and a thrilling New Year!!!