Nomad for a year

P1020101ABWell, 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!!!

25 Responses to “Nomad for a year”

  1. Kim Diefendorf

    Sounds like an awesome New Year! Looking forward to seeing what awesome things come your way! Maybe I will get to joint a trip for in 2017! Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!!

    • Piper

      Thank you kim. Have an smashing 2016. I hope you will join a trip in 2017, I am planning some special trips for 2017! Watch for them to start appearing on the website by the beginning of March.

  2. Glenda jones

    Hi Piper, I’m in Nairobi till the end of January, staying at the Pan Afric apt. 20. Would love to see you if you are back before I move on. Have a wonderful holiday in the states.

    • Piper

      I am coming in one night, on Jan 4th on my way to Ethiopia and then don’t come back until Jan 22- I am going to just miss you!!!Drats!

  3. James Mackay

    Piper, you are such an inspiration to everyone! I am extremely proud of you and your many accomplishments. Be safe on your travels and remember your brothers and sisters are always there for you.


  4. Deanna Slagle

    Sounds wonderful! That you can do what you want and go places that most people can never imagine certainly capture your gypsy spirit. Have a Merry Christmas with your family and good fortune in 2016. I’ll be thinking of your group of photographers every day in January.

    • Piper

      Thanks Deanna. It has not come without extraordinary risk, fear, and finding courage to make take the huge leap of faith! I will take special care of my group this January!!

  5. Miki Teixeira

    ExCiTiNg-constant hugs and prayers on this wild and positively fabulous adventure!
    All my Love

  6. Dusty

    Hot Damn, Piper, what an amazing experience you’ve carved for yourself. Absolutely thrilling. I’ve gotta more seriously consider joining one of your tours…

    • Piper

      Well sometimes I think I am carving a path and then life throughs in a hurdle so I can either quite or leap, I tend to be more of a leaper, after I have dusted myself off…..LOL.. You should absolutely join one of my safaris, I promise the experience will far exceed your expectations. Warning-Africa is addictive!!

  7. Debby S

    Piper you’re an amazing young lady! I’m very proud of you. I enjoy your emails.the pictures are amazing! Have aBlessed Christmas & a save journey this coming New Year

    • Piper

      Thank you Debby, may you also have a smashing year and take a risk to go on an amazing adventure this year.

  8. bobbiegoodrich

    always look forward to your blog….something exciting always happening in your life!!!!!!
    remember you can always come to Santa Fe …we have a spare guest room reserved for you
    or come stay with us in Mexico!!
    love and happy holidays

    • Piper

      I may just have to take you up on the invitation Bobbie Goodrich, I miss ya tons.

  9. Susan

    Love reading and seeing your adventures and work. So glad I met you at a workshop in S Cali. Hope to see you again and learn more. Best Hollday Wishes and Hapoy New Year. Susan S.

  10. Dave Hutchinson

    Piper… I am envious. I have done safaris in Africa 4 times and have been there 6. The Dark Continent and it’s many photo opportunities keeps luring me back. Tanzania soon? Hope so. Love your e-mails. -Dave-

  11. Severine Blaise

    Piper, you are so amazing and always good for surprises! Live your life just as you need it – admiring your work and power a lot! Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year fulfilling your dreams! Sevi xxx

    • Piper

      Life is always good for surprise, sometimes it is good to throw your hands up and say, “Ok I will take that ride”…..LOL

  12. Kitty

    Living the dream my friend! Happy holidays to you and looking forward to the posts and pictures of your gypsy life! I think that is a great plan.

    • Piper

      Thanks Kitty, this year I am going to try to live the dream after all the hard work to get there as nothing last forever. I hope to have time and internet to share the ride