Vagabumming in Asia perchance?
Yes. I’m in absolute awe at the possibilities that life has presented me. I mean, I’ve had it pretty good for a long time, but I’ve really found myself appreciating that fact for the past year and a half or so. I’m so completely blissed out for such long periods of time that sometimes I begin to worry that I’m manic. But no, no mania here, I’ve just been blessed with a wonderful life.
So, this fact that life is wonderful, I’ve found, can’t be taken as a small piece. It can’t be isolated from the rest of my life. That’s to say that decisions that I’ve made and actions that I’ve taken all came together to put me exactly where I am right now at this very moment. While there have certainly been rough patches in the past; and I often think that if I would have known then what I know now that I would have done things differently, well, I think I’ve abandoned that line of thinking too. All of those events that I may have resented before have contributed to my current state and I am unwilling to give this up, regardless of what any alternate past may have produced.
Right about now, you’re wondering, “what the hell, Will, what are these possibilities you speak of and why all the introspection?” Well, wow, where to start? As you likely know, I’ve been doing contract work in Antarctica for the past six years or so. I’ve done some amazing things, including spending a winter at The South Pole, a winter at Palmer Station and several seasons at McMurdo Station as well as visiting quite a selection of field camps and research sites on the continent of Antarctica. I can remember, very clearly, how completely overjoyed I was when I the possibility of working in Antarctica was first presented to me. Something that I hadn’t ever even considered before, something that was far beyond my wildest dreams ended up becoming a reality and is now a huge part of who I am. I remember last winter at Palmer Station when, for just a moment, my mind was able to really grasp how utterly privileged I was to be doing what I was doing and getting paid for it. Sailing INSIDE a volcanic caldera who gets to do that at their job? I never thought I would, that’s for sure.
Now, if the job itself isn’t special enough, what about the time off and travel? During my long periods of time off I have been privileged to surf in Mexico, ski in Canada, Wyoming, Colorado, France, Norway and even Kashmir. I’ve seen what is surely one of the most macabre churches in the world, traveled all over central Europe by rail, visited the lochs of Scotland, gazed upon Big Ben, communed with nature at Machu Picchu, been amazed at the passion exhibited by Tango dancers in Buenos Aires, stood in awe at the power of nature at Iguazu Falls, been fascinated by the remnants of an ancient society at Easter Island, surfed in Ecuador and found a home (of sorts) in Hawaii.
I was all set to try and get myself hired to go on an overland traverse on Antarctica for this upcoming season. Yes, 80 days of staring through a windshield at barren, flat white, eating T.V. dinners and pooping in a bucket sounded very appealing to me, like a grand adventure even. But alas, the universe has thrown something even more exciting in my direction. So, it looks like I’m taking at least a one-year hiatus from The Ice.
What’s Next Then?
Well, I pursued and have been offered a position in Taiwan. I’m not entirely comfortable posting much detail here, but the position is at least related to the same type of work I’ve been doing and is almost exactly what I was doing in Korea (if you knew me in those days think BIG TRUCK!!).
So, there you have it. Brand new adventure coming up and I expect to post more details about my upcoming move as they become available to me. For now, if you’re interested in the exact location you can see it on a map here: Kaohsiung (pronounced “COW-shung”). If you haven’t already, might I suggest you subscribe via RSS or you can even get email updates. Both of these services are free, don’t include any advertising and are a great way to keep up to date with what I have posted.
I am SO looking forward to taking a surfboard with me to my next job!