Taking in the view of Gunung Pangrango

Over the weekend I was away at a team retreat. Something we aim to do around this time each year. A time to hit pause, have fun, review the past, look ahead to the future etc.

To our surprise, the journey there was fairly traffic free. I had built into the schedule a 4hr journey, however we got to where we were staying with loads of time to just take in the views, feel the freshness of the air, relax on the balcony, and breathe…

Later that evening I received a whatsapp from my Mum checking in to see how I was. Part of our chat inspired this post.

I both laughed at my Mum’s cheekiness, and reflected on how I did indeed have things that have travelled with me. Things that feel like ‘home’.

I’m sure we all have those kind of things that make any place where you are feel like home, or at the very least feel like they have a bit of ‘you’ in them. Something which in general may not be as important on a holiday away. Though, having said that, I know a friend who sometimes carries a special pillow on trips away, as otherwise they struggle to get a good night’s rest. And some true coffee connoisseur friends who carry their own coffee, coffee grinders, and even one who carries their own espresso cup. Why? As this is integral to their coffee moments, which whether home or away, they want to enjoy fully.

When you make a move to live abroad, even if just for a time limited period, it is unlikely that you can transplant everything from one home to the next. For one thing, some things that work in the UK, just won’t work in Asia. For another, that could be uber expensive (though if making a permanent move poss worth it). And for another, one could miss out on the opportunity of discovering what ‘home’ looks like in another country, culture, and context.

However, having that familiar piece of gold & bronze material (that used to be a flowy skirt), the talking alarm clock from uni days (that has survived many a throw across the room), the light hoody (as something about a hoody makes you fill chilled out and comforted) can be really good to have. As they feel familiar, don’t take up too much suitcase space, and can cover up and add colour to a makeshift bedside table. You get the picture. 

Simple things, that can have effective results.

So what simple things would you take with you and why? If you’d like, pop the answer in the comments box. Feel free to also add to the sentence “Home is…”.