Over the last week I’ve been quickly settling back into my life on the road and readjusting to life outside of the western comforts I indulged in during my surprise trip back to the UK for xmas and new year in Switzerland.
I’ve swopped snow for sun, mountains and countryside for beaches and the sound of traffic and tv for the dulcet tones of reggae and salsa.
It’s a way of life I’m totally happy with and despite being slightly sunburnt and also slightly bruised from yet another surfing accident I’m stoked to be back in Montanita, Ecuador and living the dream once again!
One of the biggest upside to being here is my pace of life has slowed right down. One of my biggest travel goals for 2014 was just that, to take things at an easier pace, unpack and really enjoy the simple things the world of the backpacker bubble offers up.
My Montanitian routine has done just that.
I head into work at 8am and spend 2 hours blogging and working on the social media for Montanita Spanish School then spend 2 hours surf coaching.
…well then I can simply kick back and do whatever I choose for the rest of the day!
Lazing in hammocks, sunsets on the beach, swimming in the pool or tweaking the blog – the choice is entirely mine!
Not a bad way to be living hey?!
I’m living back in the Montanita Cabanas for the next few months so I’ve also unpacked somewhat – I’m not going to be going anywhere soon so I can enjoy a bit of stability and calm, after all 2013 was pretty fast paced and chaotic in places!
I’ve suddenly got an air of calm where I can take in everything around me and get cracking on some projects which have been on the back burner for far too long.
I’ve also kicked off this year with a bit more of a healthier start too. Living with my partner in crime, Gijs, mean I’m eating vegetarian meals pretty much all the time now – although I do crave a good bit of steak or chicken occasionally!
My snacks are now fresh mangos, bananas and granola (ok that last one isn’t heaps healthy!) and I’m chugging down lots of water too – combining this with walking everywhere, teaching surfing and swimming laps in the pool at my hostel I’m feeling pretty damn energetic, healthy and all round better for it.
That’s one of my main missions for my time in Ecuador – to get myself back into a more healthy style of living, loose a heap of weight (damn you bucket, swiss chocolate and xmas binging!) and get myself back into the kind of shape I was in when I was here last!
So fingers crossed I can keep it up!
And of course a large part of my life here is all about ocean living. Working as a surf instructor again means 60% of my day is automatically centred around the beach – and having the sand under my feet and the salty breeze in my hair always brings a smile to my face.
The ocean is what makes me tick.
And of course when I’m not coaching the beach is pretty central to life in Montanita anyhow – whether it’s a sunset cocktail, a game of football or simply heading down for some surfing fun with my buddies during my free time, it’s all beach beach beach.
And I’m totally happy with that!
Life by the beach is the reason I started travelling in the first place – I’m not a city person by any stretch of the imagination – so being able to settle here and know that’s how the next few months are going to be panning out has brought almost a relief to my travels. If you’ve ever met me when I’m away from the ocean or the surf you’ll know how stressed and irritable I can be!
Winning All Round
Couple all of the above with my home for the next few months in Montanita Cabanas and you have the recipe for a very happy backpacker!
The hostel is full of some amazing faces, many of whom are long term too, so it’s less a stop over – more a backpacker family here.
Communal cooking, weekend trips and impromptu pool parties are all in plentiful supply and it’s nice to chat to people past the initial “who are you, where are you from, where are you going” conversation that has been on constant lopp for the last few years!
As you can probably tell, despite only being here a week I’ve already slotted right back into South American life and my temporary home here in Montanita.
I’m stoked, I’m relaxed, I’m loving life.
…well my Ecuadorian home at least!