Coming home feels different these days.
Life has always been looking forward for me – looking to the next trip, the next adventure, the next project. The thrills always came from the unknown opportunities on the horizon, and what was going to come next.
Traveling through Cuba was an adventure in every sense, I can’t wait to post my photos and stories. It felt like one of those endless trips, the ones where you land and immediately forget what day it is, how many days you’ve been there and how many you have left. Nothing felt specific, we just took things as they came up and had the best time with it.
Home has never felt like a specific concept for me. I don’t have a family home really, I don’t feel like I belong to one specific culture or place – rather I feel like my heart belongs in lots of places, and lots of people. But lately the idea of a home has become more solid for me. Maybe I’m finally growing up. I’ve always been a late bloomer.
In those quiet moments in Cuba, sitting on the front porch of our Casa of that particular town, I would get belly-flips of excitement in the pit of my stomach whenever I thought of home. A friend would cross my mind, or the idea of summer in my neighbourhood, or thoughts of sofa cuddles with Molly and I would feel genuine excitement for the slower parts of my life. The parts of my life that I built and chose and grew.
So much of travel is about what happens to you. You’re always in control of how you handle a situation, or process it, but travel takes so much out of your hands and you have no choice but to live in the moment and take whatever comes your way. That’s the thrill of it, I mean, it’s why we do it – to experience the unknown. For me it’s not thinking, it’s no commitments, it’s escaping into other cultures and other ways of life. It’s getting lost.
But home for me now feels like a culmination of choices I have made in my life that I am finally proud of. I find so much peace and joy in the idea of my home, my life and my friend-family that I have built here in London.
But having said that, I have a whole lot of Cuba stuff coming up here. Lots, lots of photos, and a Cuba road trip guide coming your way soon.
The inspiration for these photos came from the story of women in coffee. A while back Taylors of Harrogate sent me some samples of their Esperanza coffee, grown by women. I've seen first hand the empowerment for women that comes with having a livelihood, a means to improve their living situation, educate and feed their children and elevate their status within their own community. But of course the gender gap is universal, and in developing countries it is often overwhelmingly large. Taylors of Harrogate is working to address that with some amazing projects, check out their work here.