Expat Magazine


By Thebangtoddowenwaldorf @BangLiving

Days of contemplation that sweep to and fro, wisping Adieuwinds, scattering beach sand, waving streaks of discolour. As a youth my thoughts clung to subjects spanning commonplace, awesome, and fantasy, looking, wondering, admiring, gasping, with tears of awe, hope, and fear. It was said by those who would say such things, that the thoughts were too frequent, too many, too this and too that. Just beginning to knock on adulthood’s door with impressionable hands I agreed with them and said that unceasingly thinking was a trifle, to be frowned upon, and kicked like empty cans with nothing good inside.

I look upon that youth that lacked the gumption that daresay I have today, with eyes that know better of what has yet come, sympathetic to the plight. Let me cajole you, young one, beyond the frightful hills of doubt, seeming insurmountable, slippery slopes that the feet dare not climb for they do not like slippage, yet they will. The summit brings winds that that brings to him a new fear. Fear not of the thinking sort, or thoughts themselves, or the chance to chisel a self unlike the one in your plans, but instead winds that rapt, lift, and turn you so that you know not the way you came, or to go, but feel now the peace that had been full of flight, brought by the new winds.

When I was younger I watched rippling water trickle down streams near houses. In some places they water made a gurgling sound. I remember it because otherwise the stream didn’t speak to us except for calling to join it. Where the water met obstructions, fallen branches, broken sticks, the river thrown into fits of chaos, the water gurgled. With a boy’s fascination I watched reflections scatter on top, fish that made homes in still circles that would later be called eddies, and tadpoles that would turn into land creatures that would make my mother shriek. Each day was new and plentiful with unforeseen adventure.   As an older but still relatively young, yet with a different suffix, man, I learned the facts behind the mysteries about the world that I lived in. The stream did not come from mystical lands of magic or fantasy but from the retention ponds several neighborhoods over. To wonder was to be fascinated, which brought excitement, which fleeted with ignoramus youth.

As early adulthood required, which the jury still deliberates, I lost those days of wonder, fascination, and boyish adventure to a career, debt, and having to cut my hair like they did. Although I gave this a shot, it didn’t really work out. I remembered being a boy listening to the grown-ups reminisce about their own childhoods, and thinking that one day I would be them. Would I also miss my own? I knew that they were right when they said it is fun to be a kid. It was easy to tell because I was one. They were also right when they said don’t grow up too fast, and so I decided to do that too. Away I put the fascination and wonder, my youthful passion, like a firefly in a jar. A firefly that stopped glowing so brightly later but never died.

Life’s rollercoaster went through its exciting, fun, fast downs, and sometimes steep, long, tiresome ups, and while it did I had my jar and inside of it was my firefly, my passion and wonder. My late-twenties proved to be difficult and I was stubborn to acknowledge that I lacked the joy of my youth, because in the language of adulthood everything was moving along as planned. My finances were secure. I had just become debt free. Things that I struggled to have in the past, a car, home, retirement, I could get or had already.  I was twenty-nine years old now and the arrow of success was up, but the one regarding peace of mind, comfort, and joy was not.

There is a whole website here about what happened next. There were a lot of mental hurdles to stride before moving to Australia, but eventually I made my way over some of them. As someone told me to do once, I threw it all to the wall and watched what would stick. It took about a year of freaking out before I did it. After that I started this blog. I didn’t include a lot of the difficulty of it. I wanted the blog to be uplifting. I apologize for that but I’ll make up for it.

So, did the firefly get free of the jar? What happened to passion and wonder?  Well the jar has a small crack in it. After careful examination it looks just big enough for a…


The Bang blog has allowed me to share my biggest life changing event yet. It’s been two years since I started the blog, and for eighteen months I’ve recorded some of my adventure spanning four countries. It allowed me to reach out to family and friends, and make new friends. I learned a lot about writing for the web. It can be tricky. I’m getting better at proof-reading, sort of. It was all a great experience and I am a better man because of it. I will create another web project in the future, but when the time is right. Put a fork in it, The Bang blog that covers my traveling is done. I’ll keep this domain active and use it again in the future. I’ll see if I can keep the blog up as a link somewhere too.

There’s a lot that I didn’t cover in the blog. After going to college for four years and working at a finance company for three there was a lot of pressure battling against walking away from it and moving to Australia, and then Las Vegas, Thailand, and New Zealand. Some have said that what I did was inspiring to them, so I wrote a book. It’s a bit bare all. After all, I’m a human, and human stories can get messy. It could be a year or two before I’m done editing it, and then I will seek a publisher. I enjoy reading what I have written so far and that gives me confidence that someone else might as well.

So now I start a new journey. This time my adventure includes a partner, and we’re taking a Rocket to destinations unknown.

Passionately, and full of excitement and wonder,


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