A lot of you wander here in search of vegan and long haul travel advice. But some of you (the ones who stick around and support me, I love you all so much!) have a genuine interest in me as a person and how my inner journey unfolds. I owe you a bit of an update… So it’s been six months – SIX! That’s the longest I have stayed anywhere in three years – since I arrived in Berlin from Milan. Obviously, the pace has been very different from the constant backpacking or bicycle touring you’ve known me to do, and the current state of the blog is a reflection of that – I feel like I have nothing exciting for you to bite into. It’s hard for me to share what I am up to for various reasons, and I have been postponing it up until now.
I mostly want to tell you all is well. It’s been my aim to be as truthful as possible in this whole endeavor. Mostly Amelie has been about my personal journey, and a lot of it has been about me taking control of my life and healing myself from a heartbreak this past year. In all honesty, throughout this I’ve had trouble letting go of Miss Perfect. This was very apparent in my previous life back in Canada before the traveling started, but some, unfortunately, stuck around afterward. The constant desire for perfection, for optimal fitness and health, for work performance, for always being the best version of myself. It became hard for me to just say “fuck it” and let my hair down, even just once in a while. I’d go to bed at 8pm when everyone was out dancing. Because of yoga, because of work, because of what the next day would bring. Because of what I would miss. Because of this and because of that.
Berlin is allowing me to say “fuck it” and it’s a damn good feeling. Both in the greater scheme of things but also at this point in my life. Things are messy and beautiful and imperfect here. Berlin is a safe and wonderful place to let go and indulge in hedonism anonymously and with no judgment from anyone. I’ll leave the rest to your imagination. For now at least.
Coming to Berlin with a work permit and knowing that I was going to be employed again for the first time in years also meant that I entered the city with a different perspective. It was never going to be a place I passed through, trying to discover as fast as I could in order to generate as many articles as efficiently as possible before leaving. But rather somewhere I came to find inner peace and a home for a few months, make friends, have a routine, get back to my yoga practice and find myself in a bit of a more stable financial situation before moving on. Unfortunately, arriving somewhere where you will be for an extended period of time makes a travel blogger lazy. Postponing touristy things and vegan restaurant outings (it’s coming though! did you know there were over 150 vegan restaurants and even a vegan hotel in Berlin?) in favor of casual hangouts in parks with amazing people quickly became the norm. I have been enjoying feeling temporarily more grounded and not stuck to my computer 24/7 with the constant urge to update my social media.
Full-time work also took my life over a little. Blogging alone was a sustainable thing when I traveled and lived in South East Asia or cycled and camped on the roadside, but it’s been a whole other story being in Europe – but I knew it was going to have to be that way moving here. It’s taken me time to find a job I love and that is an extension of what I have been doing here, but I finally have: I am happily managing two online communities and feeling so blessed for the opportunity to convert all that I have acquired through this platform elsewhere in my professional life. Before that happened, I did find myself having to take on more and more sponsored content to stay afloat and started getting the feeling that my blog, which I have always tried to keep as faithful a representation of myself as possible, began to look like a bit of an advertisement. I love this blog – it has brought me so much experience and opportunities, but I also love traveling. And blogging is a means to do that. It is work. But I’ve been finding it difficult to keep a balance between work and blog, and I’d like to make an effort to put more of myself here from now on, whether it be travel related as I make my way through the best hidden Europe destinations, or “getting my freak on in Berlin” related. I’ll also write something soon with proper Berlin tips, but, for now, check out these alternative Berlin insider tips by Margherita and Nick of The Crowded Planet.
I am thankful for the change of pace and for growing small roots. Thankful for great friends and for a city so accepting and free.Thankful for sleepless nights in clubs and hungover days spent in bed watching films and doing absolutely nothing and not feeling bad about it. For people helping me discover a wonderful wild side of myself I didn’t know existed. I still have no idea what the future holds and it is still a great feeling.