on the road digital nomad journal
All photos by Loc Boyle taken in my Paris nest on the day of my arrival, jetlagged but happy.
I'm sitting here in Paris back at my old desk at Bliss Studio writing this post. I'm sleeping in my old room again in the Canal Saint-Martin, walking the same streets around my apartment that became so familiar to me last year, seeing all my friends again but something feels very different. And it's not just the fact that the last time I was here in this place, it was 0°C and snowing in buckets. I've definitely changed over the last few months back home in Australia, away from Paris, and this change wasn't so obvious to me until I arrived back here a few days ago.
The last few months back home in Australia, almost four whole months, were hard for me. Faced with the very real and immediate prospect of having my application for an entrepreneur's visa in France denied, my anxiety around this visa, my future direction, increased with every extra day I waited in Australia. Every day was a process of wrangling my emotional state into line, of letting myself dream about setting up a life in France whilst simultaneously practicing being ‘OK' with that life not happening for me now or maybe ever.
I wrote down plans for how I could keep moving around the world, splitting my time between Bali, Paris, Australia and the rest of the world, quizzed my family on whether they thought I could still have a good life with this never-ending nomad plan or not. I assured everyone around me (but really, myself) that I was going to be OK whether the visa came through or not, reciting my plans B, C and D over and over. Some days I believed myself, other days not so much. I'd made such a big deal about this visa and France, something I'd dreamed about and prepared for since a very young age. Everyone around me knew it was the centre of my current life and thoughts, the visa, and asked me often if I'd had any news on it. As the months wore on, the question got harder to answer, my positivity for the situation grew fainter and fainter until I almost didn't have any left in me.
My story I was living became that I was trapped in Australia, powerless, being kept from my happiness that only activated when I was travelling or ideally, in France. But it turns out it was only me keeping me from my freedom and happiness. You see, what I didn't find out until mid-May was that my passport had been ready for me to…