There are people living in first-world countries who’ve never travelled more than 100km from their place of birth. There are people who don’t read books. There are people who still listen to Elvis (a lot). I’m not one of those people.
I realised, while staring out of the window of a Hilux bouncing along a 4WD track, that my life over the past couple of years has been an unending quest for new. At the big, obvious scale, I’m about to move to a new career path halfway around the world. Reflecting on the details of my life, though, I find that there’s not much staying the same.
I recently switched from PC to Mac. The land sport I’ve played most this year is beach volleyball; I’ve been a basketballer until now. I’ve hunted down new music to fill my ears on long drives. I’ve visited places that I never even knew existed until I arrived there. I’ve surfed spots I’d only seen pictures of; I’ve met people with radically different views to my own; I’ve even watched 25 minutes of a soccer game. I’ve become a dual national, learned about star movement and can now locate south in a clear sky. I’ve worked in at least 3 new roles in the past year, not to mention doing research to discover new information. I sang in front of a crowd and have stood on top of mountains I’d never heard of before. I’ve weathered a storm alone in a tent and sat with 10,000 people watching an NRL game. I’ve crawled through a cave barely high enough to fit my head, days after jumping into a waterfall. I’ve even changed my preferred style of underwear (trunks are comfier!).
The scary and exciting thing is, it’s only just beginning. I’ve done all of that in Australia in the past 12 months. The next 12 hold the prospect of more Australian travel, followed by Ireland, Scotland and the UK. I’ll be living in an internationally oriented student hall, which will no doubt house some amazing people to befriend. My new career, science communication, is all about sharing new ideas with people of all shapes, backgrounds and orientations. The best thing is, though, I don’t know what else I’ll do that’s new to me. All I know is that my quest will continue. Bring it on!