He lived by the sea but wasn’t bothered about sitting and enjoying the view. I didn’t understand that about him. I can always see something new and exciting on the shore, in the shallows, thrashing in the deep, shifting on the horizon. The clouds, the storms, the sunshine; even birds were in my focus. But he walked along the promenade, not caring.

When we went to the pier he preferred to sit and look at the buildings, which suited me just fine. I was the roiling seas with their ever-present motion, tumbling waves and surprise splashes of foam on the rocks. He was stoic. A fresh coat of paint on a building; double-glazed windows to keep out the noise.

Declarations were forbidden. This wasn’t something we spoke about, just something that I knew. But I had to test it, as was my nature: a tide slowly coming in with tips of fingers searching for cracks before slowly ebbing away. I moved back and forth with the moon as my companion until finally, I thought I’d found a possibility. A shifting of a brick here, a little patch of grout missing there. A way in.

I took my chance, the sea rising up with a giant wave that I knew would be laughed about in our future. A story told to children in our beautiful countryside house – even if the children were nieces and nephews or covered in fur. Somewhere where the ocean was tamed into a river coupled with a sprawling house sporting transparent glass windows overlooking the bank.

But the sea didn’t make it that far. The house had guarded against any leaks coming in to spoil its tidy interior. No rot was to be found in these walls. I retreated into gloomy weather and storms that raged against the pier, battered against the shore, and tore at the foundations of my dreams and my hopes.

But then, a thought. I do not want to be tamed. I do not want to change from the ocean into a river. I am unpredictable. I am seething. I am both desire and danger; refreshing and tumultuous; filled with wonder and movement and depth and beauty. And I deserve someone who is willing to understand and navigate those waters, to forgive mistakes, to apprehend and savour the nature of the sea.

Houses do not mix with the ocean. So I stopped trying.

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  • I used to think that the seagulls in Australia (like old mate here) were bold. Bloody hell, past Rowie would be floored if she saw the ones that get around in the UK. They're monsters. They're terrifying. They are freaking huge and scary. Australian seagulls are cute as hell in comparison. Just look at this little fella.⠀
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #expat #expatlife #travelblog #travelblogger #aussieblog #aussieblogger #presetsbykelsey #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #mytinyatlas #newcastlensw #newcastleaustralia #mynewcastle #barbeach #seagull#beachlife #ig_australia #artofvisuals #alifesheloves #dametraveller #femaletraveller #thehappynow #instagood
  • Anyone know what this place is? Hint: it's the home of the wife of possibly the most famous Englishman in the world... You probably had to study him and/or his work in high school. Still no? Mate. This is the home of Anne Hathaway, wife of William Shakespeare. Well worth the detour just to see what it looked like. Didn't pay to go in because I'm cheap af. In all honesty it's a pretty huge house considering the sizes of homes back then and it's got a pretty sick garden. Can't believe it's still bloody standing. Classic England.⠀
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #expat #expatlife #travelblog #travelblogger #aussieblog #aussieblogger #presetsbykelsey #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #mytinyatlas #artofvisuals #alifesheloves #dametraveller #femaletraveller #thehappynow #instagood #annehathaway #shakespeare #lovegreatbritain #visitengland #englandtourism #agameoftones
  • A Belgian, a Frenchwoman and an Australian climbed a hill in Canterbury during February to watch the sun set. We were surrounded by roads, a park and a bunch of teenagers who were making out. Classic.⠀
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #expat #expatlife #travelblog #travelblogger #aussieblog #aussieblogger #presetsbykelsey #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #mytinyatlas #lovegreatbritain #visitengland #englandtourism #agameoftones #alifesheloves #dametraveller #femaletraveller #thehappynow #instagood #canterbury #monument #memorial
  • I know that these pictures of galleries don't get that many likes but I really do not give a shit. These are happy places for me and I'll be DAMNED if I don't fill my feed with shit that makes me happy. Like these Lowry paintings. Because ART.⠀
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #expat #expatlife #travelblog #travelblogger #aussieblog #aussieblogger #presetsbykelsey #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #mytinyatlas #artofvisuals #alifesheloves #dametraveller #femaletraveller #thehappynow #instagood #mcr #manchesterartgallery #artappreciation #lowry
  • Gimme dat sandstone. Gimme those arches. Gimme great staircases. Argh, the buildings over here are MAGNIFICENT and I will never apologise for sneaking into universities to see what they're like inside because I am a REBEL WITH A CAUSE⠀
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #expat #expatlife #travelblog #travelblogger #aussieblog #aussieblogger #presetsbykelsey #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #mytinyatlas #artofvisuals #alifesheloves #dametraveller #femaletraveller #thehappynow #instagood #aberystwyth #cymru #wales #architecturepix #architecture #interiors
  • There are some beautiful fountains in the UK... and then there are some that look like a child's head has been chiselled open and had a tube stuck in it while their mouth is a yawning cavern of terror. Like this one.
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #aussieblog #aussieblogger #travelblog #travelblogger #expatlife #expat #solotraveller #fountains #unitedkingdom #dametraveller #visitengland #alifesheloves #thehappynow  #presetsbykelsey #aband0n_all_h0pe #grime_lords #glitz_n_grime #forgotten #ig_abandoned #ig_captures_decay #beautyindecay #forahappymoment #exploringtheglobe #lovegreatbritain #photosofengland #englandtrip #photosofbritain #englandtourism
  • Lowry 🧡
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #mytinyatlas #artofvisuals #artappreciation #lowry #franklowry #mcr #manchester #landscape #painting #lovegreatbritain #travellife #gallerylife
  • Wandering through the UK towards the end of winter and at the start of spring you see a lot of daffodils. I hate daffodils. So when I found some GIANT SUNFLOWERS (no matter how painted on a wall they are), I had to get a photo with them to shoe my solidarity with oft ignored other yellow flowers of this world 🌻
📷 @levy1989
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #aussieblogger #travelblogger #aberystwyth #wales #cymru #sunflowers #dametraveller #solotravel #sheisnotlost #expat #expatlife #uk #streetart #mural #thehappynow
  • Sometimes joy comes from watching other people travel! I got to drop off my big brother and his girlfriend at the airport earlier this year - he was taking her on a surprise holiday for her 30th birthday! Pure joy in those smiles ❤️⠀
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#theunpreparedtraveller #rowtrip #expat #expatlife #travelblog #travelblogger #aussieblog #aussieblogger #presetsbykelsey #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #mytinyatlas #artofvisuals #alifesheloves #dametraveller #femaletraveller #thehappynow #instagood

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Mate, who am i?

(I ask myself the same thing)

Travelling can be really hard when you never feel like you're prepared. But, the more I do it the more I realise that being unprepared is the best way to travel. I’m Rowena. I live with depression and an anxiety disorder, which inspires a lot of my writing. My first reaction is to over-pack, over-worry, freak out, and give myself a headache. I’m consciously rebelling against that.

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