Tag Archives: Spain

We are not only about traveling even though it is definitely one off  our passions in life. As you might have understood after reading some of our blog posts we kind of like doing things a little bit different sometimes.

The palce for Asko2010

The setting for the Asko2010 gathering

  • We like traveling but will not just settle for going on a two week holiday. We want to explorer the possibilities of going on a 3 or 6 month journey.
  • Our children’s education has always been important to us. And since the conventional way which is to send kids to school isn’t always working that great we took a look into alternatives. We investigated and explored the subject and found other ways that work  just as well or even better. On top of that it offered us the time freedom to go on long journeys…
  • To us the idea of working the 9 to 5 has never really inspired us that much. Although, when times are hard we can sometimes get tempted by the security if offers. But  it has never really convinced us to give up our desire for freedom. Whenever really faced with a choice between the two our need for freedom has always won.

A problem with making unconventional choices though is that sometimes people around you don’t always understand. This of course can often make it harder. With this in mind we have decided to hold a gathering for unconventional choices at our small farm in Sweden. How about that?

We have previously had 4 family gatherings at our farm with participants from more than 10 countries. Even with people coming from such far away places like Israel, Spain, USA, Taiwan and New Zeeland. It has been absolutely amazing.

Not having done it for two years we have now decided to do it again. We are opening up our home for anyone willing to come and share in a network meeting around how we can support each other in our unconventional choices. We expect it to be the best week of the summer.

Read more about it at: www.asko2010.info

And if you are in the neighbourhood do come and join us!

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I’ve had some really interesting reading lately – my old journal from the first time we did some extended travel with our campervan in 1996. Wow, how times flies and how quickly you forget! The struggles we had! And so much fun! Although we had traveled a lot before that, this was the first time we were campers, in our own campervan and totally inexperienced at this. But we learned a lot :lol:.

This was the transport for our first extended travel experince

This was the transport for our first extended travel experince


Like how inappropriate it can be to go over some of the highest parts of the Swiss Alps in the middle of the winter. We started off in a big snowfall (and in the Alps “big” can really be an understatement) and had to put on snow chains (I mean, wouldn’t that have been a sign enough not to go?). Snow chains make the driving very slow though and after a while the roads got better and we took them off. As we wanted to save time (for what? I can wonder) we put the campervan on a train that took us trough the mountain instead of driving around it for 4 hours. Sitting safely on the train was actually a very nice part of this trip, but soon, after having arrived at the end station on the other side it really wasn’t very pleasant anymore. We were now very high up in a place where there was only one choice to go to if you wanted to go further. The road down was very steep and winding and suddenly it also became totally icy. We didn’t have the snow chains on now and the road was so icy, it just wasn’t possible to stop and put them on either. This was one of my life’s most scary moments I assure you! High up on an icy steep winding Alpine road with the whole family in a campervan which couldn’t stop. “I got all shaky” I have written in the journal, and I think that went for the rest of the family as well. Even though the kids were very young at that time, they got the seriousness of it all. Finally, a patch without ice appeared and Magnus could stop the car. We stopped to gather our breaths for a while and thanked the higher forces that we all were alive. Then, with the snow chains safely on and with the speed of a snail, we continued out of this steep icy nightmare.

Snow storm in the morning, Haut Nendaz, Valais, Switzerland

Snow storm in the morning, Haut Nendaz, Valais, Switzerland

Palm trees in the evening, Lugano, Ticino, Switzerland as well

Palm trees in the evening, Lugano, Ticino, Switzerland as well

After having passed through the amazing St Gotthard tunnel, 16 km long, we later arrived in Lugano, in the Italian part of Switzerland. We visited some old friends there and they were kind enough to let us borrow an apartment they had in the middle of this beautiful city. From snowstorms and icy roads, we were now surrounded by palm trees! All in the same country and just hours away!

Our trip continued after a few days and we went to France, where we rented an apartment in the old town in Nice for a few weeks over Christmas and New Year. Then, after France, finally our big goal: Spain! We were so happy to have gotten this far, and first of all we really wanted to visit Barcelona, in the northern parts of the country. To start out, we planned to visit Barcelona’s famous street “La Rambla”. Still inexperienced as we were at travelling with a campervan, we had the somewhat naive idea of just driving into the city and park somewhere along the famous street.

Finally having dinner after a long day of driving. Who says that extended travel is always easy

Finally having dinner after a long day of driving. Who says that extended travel is always easy

I quote from the journal here: “What chaos! Narrow roads and lots of traffic. We got lost before Barcelona. We got lost inside Barcelona. We got lost after Barcelona. Boy have we seen many industrial areas today! Finally reaching La Rambla there was nothing else to do than trying to turn around and get out of the city. Not a parking lot in sight big enough for half the size of our car even, well not a parking lot in sight at all. We gave up and continued without having set one foot in Barcelona. Had “lunch” in the car while driving – at 5 o’clock- bananas and candy! Horrible!”

The rest of that day continued in the same spirit with narrow steep winding roads (we now realized what a mountainous country Spain really is, had never thought of that during our visits there by plane), quarrelling exhausted kids (and parents) and finding ourselves lost a couple of more times. Finally, after having been driving for a whole day, we arrived at the campsite which was our goal for the day. We had then done 70 km!

I quote myself again: “Today I really question if we should go on further south?”

We did go on though. After having taken a couple of days to recuperate ourselves after this first driving experience in Spain, we decided to follow through with our plan, to go to the very southern part, Marbella.

And it’s just so interesting to read this today. And to know, in retrospect, that the rest of this trip actually turned out to be one of the best times in my life, and the rest of the family says the same! After this first challenging part of our trip (I assure you, this wasn’t the only things that happened :lol:) the remaining months of this journey was just like heaven. And I mean that!

Having finally reached our goal, Marbella in Southern Spain. The Mediterranean isn’t extremely hot in January though

Having finally reached our goal, Marbella in Southern Spain. The Mediterranean isn’t extremely hot in January though

So think about this: we were out doing some extended travel and had gotten so far, and we were relatively close to our goal, the South of Spain, and we were also on the verge of giving up. But we didn’t. We did stop for a while to just relax and let go of all the stress and frustration. We took a deeper look at what we really wanted and then recommitted to our goal and continued. Today, I can see this as such a great metaphor.

How often don’t we strive for our goals and on the way towards them are faced with one challenge after the other. At some point we are close to giving up – it’s just too much. We ask ourselves if it’s really worth it. And then, when we can’t take it anymore and are ready to surrender to the challenges , if we just let go for a while and detach, relax, get some new energy and recommit, we lay the grounds for amazing things to happen. If you think back on your own life, I’m sure you have your own memories of this phenomenon. And when you are in the situation of giving up on your dream, try to remember these situations, the times when you didn’t give up, and what that meant to the rest of your life!

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Our daughter, Aurora, just celebrated her 19th Birthday (and we couldn’t post this that specific day because this site was hacked!). Since her birthday happens to be during the part of the year when we find the Swedish climate the most inviting, she usually celebrates at home. Often, when it’s someone’s Birthday, we have the “where did we celebrate last time?” discussion. With Aurora, it’s not too difficult since we normally never do any long term travel during the summer, only shorter trips.

Universial studios

Auroras Birthday Celebration in Hollywood

Viktoria is the one who has celebrated most birthdays abroad. She’s born in April and since we often return to Sweden from our winter trips in late April, May or even June sometimes, she’s had many celebrations in different places. 3 times in England, twice in Spain, once in Australia and once in California…

Aron, is born early November, just before we usually leave for the winter, but he has managed to celebrate abroad a couple of times anyway. In Spain, England and in the USA, more precisely in Ann Arbor, MI.

Regarding us parents, who are both born in July, we’re just too used to having our parties in the land of the Midnight Sun. We never travel abroad during July. You can take that as a travel tip: “When to visit Sweden – during the summer!”

German birthday cake

Last years Birthday cake – German style

Anyway, we did recall though, that Aurora actually had spent 2 of her Birthdays abroad. Last year we were invited to a Bat Mitzvah in Augsburg, Germany, at this specific time.

Also, a couple of years ago we were in the USA for just a short trip, around the time of her birthday, to participate the whole family in something called “The Enlightened Warrior Training Camp”, an amazing event that we’ll never forget. Highly recommended for families, or actually for anybody! At the time for Auroras Birthday, the camp was over and we celebrated with a day in Hollywood.

Happy Birthday Aurora!

Visit Auroras blog www.myaustendreamworld.com

Warriors

I’m a Warrior, AHO!

Walk of fame


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