So I started early this year on making plans to travel abroad. It was a decision I had always wanted to do. But didn’t know how I was going to go about it. I’ve always dreamed of traveling, but I had my life in LA being self-employed that consisted of me working daily. Work that paid the bills and more work just to make a living. Anyone who knew me or was a part of my circle often heard this….
Question: How was your weekend?
Me: I worked.
Question: What did you do over the weekend?
Question: Anything exciting?
Me: No… nothing really— I worked with so and so.
And that’s pretty much how the conversations went.
Now– don’t get me wrong– I did do quite a few things when I could on my days off, but it was not like what about to do in 2016. 2016 will be different. Why? Because I’ve decided to take some time off for a year to travel. Yes. A year to travel and explore. Where? Central and South America.
L.A. has been my first real home. 15 years to be exact. My accomplishments. My life. My friends and family. LA also has a flip side to it, Like being hella expensive and sitting in your car for hours just to get somewhere, that would take 20 minutes. I found myself working extra harder, grabbing gigs that came left and right, putting on makeup every day, going to work and getting back up just to do it all over again. So instead of investing in another pair of shoes, makeup, clothes and things that were unimportant I decided to invest my finances for a year to travel.
During this decision-making to go abroad, we (Kim & I) did a lot of research and planning for our globe-trotting. I invested in two books “A Better Life For Half The Price ” by Tim Leffel and “The Expert Expat” by Melissa Brayer Hess and Patrica Lindeman plus a huge world map on the wall for inspiration.I started putting in work and before you knew it– it was time to pack up and start clearing out Apt C. Everytime I walked into my apartment after work it was another daunting task that seemed so easy to do (only when I thought about it in my head)… But to physically do the work?! Ugh.. it was a nightmare. And trying to sell things?! .. ugh…was exhausting! Taking pictures…Posting images…Contacting shelters…Dropping things off at the shelters… curbside drop-offs. NOT. AN. EASY. TASK.
The only way I was able to conquer this mission was to think if I was dead right now. What would happen to my things? What would I want people not to see? Who would be inside my apartment? What hands would be touching my belongings? I got everything I loved boxed up, shipped my jeep, and cleaned out the salon.
I shredded all paperwork, my library of books (that I found myself going back thru over and over), old magazines, things that were taking up space that I did not use. Once I started detoxing it felt great. I even went to Dockwiler Beach with Kim to burn things that I wanted to be ultimately removed from my system. I didn’t want the universe to hold on to those things that I didn’t want. So I burned it. Ashes to ashes dust to dustDamn wouldn’t it be easier if the place just burned downed and I wouldn’t have to deal with this?!
But I did ask myself “If this place were to burn down what would you like to have in your hands right now?” So I packed up my portfolio, hard drives, cameras, phone, passport, cutting shears, clippers, social security card, credit cards and hair extensions. Lol. ANnnnnnnnnnD that was STILL TOO MUCH!
So the day arrived when It was officially time to leave my nook in Inglewood. My shelter. Apt C. Friday–December the 18th@2pm. It felt awkward not having a ton of keys in my hand. It felt uncomfortable knowing that someone else will be taking over my space where I lived for almost 15-years. It felt awkward knowing that no one would be stopping by anymore. It felt awkward walking away from a place that was my security blanket. Apt C was always filled love and warmth. Apt C was the place for invited friends and families. Apt C had great home cooked meals served with wine. Apt C was artsy like me. Apt C had loving friends/family that came over to sit on the futon. Apt C had nurturing friends standing inside the day before we left– with jackets on, champagne glasses, gifts, warm tears, sweet toasts, speeches with smiling faces and hugs as we began to depart from Cali the next day.Apt C welcomed me at the young age of 25. It has been received with open doors and warm welcomes. Apt C stood for Copeland, Cousins, California, Comfort, Challenges, Courage, Confidant, Cosmetologist, Creative, Cutter, Caring and more. And most of all— Apt C had “Character”. It’s been the best place ever in Inglewood.
I will be journaling my travels as I start in January 2016.