It took my awhile to settle into the digital nomad life type of “office”, because there is no normal office. You actually have a lot of offices, like your dinner table, your bed or any other suitable place where you don’t get back pain. And of course co-working spaces, which we haven’t found because of poor planning.
My all-time favorite office has been on the balcony at our current AirBNB place. Like, who doesn’t like a morning stretch on the balcony, sit down and start working to a sea view! Every morning.
A normal day at the office
On the picture below you can I have a very serious meeting with World Cleanup Day (it’s the non-profit organization I volunteer for, and which you should check out if you want to earn som karma-points). I think this was the moment Katrin‘s dog appeared on Skype and I just couldn’t contain my happiness. Anyway, no make-up happy face, a super fancy work suit and some good ol’ Croatian air. That kind of sums up my days at the office, together with poor internet and the company of mosquitos in the evening.
It’s simple, you just join a wine tasting and suddenly you’re 12 hours deep into a new friendship. That’s at least what happened to us. It could’ve been because we have just been lacking friends to talk to for 3 months, and anyone could’ve been a victim to our bla bla. But, I honestly can say that it was one of the greatest days I’ve had and it was because we just totally clicked with the people we met.
This wine tasting was a gift to my boyfriend, Lars the Winelover, for his birthday. Although, this wasn’t the usual kind of wine tasting. It was a wine tasting at a Medieval Castle in Chianti. Who doesn’t love a little castles and Medieval history to a bit of wine, right?
About the wine tasting tour
We met up in Florence and then we drove to a place called Trebbio. The place was just the most Tuscan place I’ve ever seen. A castle on top of one of the many Tuscan green hills as far as the eye can see, vineyards, olive trees and a red fiat casually placed next to a super Italian looking house.
Pazzi and wine tasting – what?
The whole experience started off with a tour around the castle, which by-the-way was owned by Medici’s enemies, The Pazzis, back in the days! We had no idea that our experience was going to involve us actually walking in one of the rooms where The Pazzis conspired against Medici’s power. Lars and I just looked at each other and had a moment of; holy scheisse, this gone be good. And it was amazing.
Though, the castle today is owned by some very “ordinary” people. It was bought by a duke as a gift for his wife back in the 60’s. Their grandchildren are now making this area into a Tuscan cradle. For me it was mind-blowing. Imagine growing up in a castle. A CASTLE. Their living-room was the Pazzi conspiracy room, like I can’t even.
Then the wine tasting journey took us below ground level and into the pits of wine.
The power of Chianti
We got an amazing introduction to the Chianti wine and how important it is to pronounce Chianti as Ki-anti and not Shi-anti. Otherwise you’ll be banned from Tuscany. And the Chianti God gives you alcohol poisoning even before you drink the wine. We also learnt about how important it is with extra virgin olive oil and got other tricks in the sleeve.
We also got a sneak peek of some wine from the early days, that no one is allowed to drink. I think Lars cried a bit inside, but we had to just give a teary glimpse on the wine and just keep walking.
An intimate wine tasting
Then our group was split up, where some people left on Vespa road-trip, and Lars and I, along with our two new best friends, went on a very intimate wine tasting. So yeah, it was four of us and we got super lucky to meet a couple from Down Under.
We got an amazing wine tasting, with different type of wine and some complimentary snacks from the area. Below you can see a very happy guide showing us some secret information about wine.
After the wine tasting we had some free time. Below you can see one picture of Lars, Mark and Tate, two of our new mateys. Or how they say it in Australia. Tipsy and merry, we just talked about everything between how huge corporations suck and the freedom of travels. We also met another couple from Murica.
After this amazing wine tasting in Tuscany, we drove back to Florence. Guess who was in the car together? Us, the Down Under couple and Murica couple. It hit me in the car that we are from three different continents and how amazing it is that we can just hang.
We also talked about the fact that Australia and North-America have only existed for a couple of hundred years. Sometimes I forget that it’s actually us Europeans back in the days. Tate also had some Swedish heritage in her DNA.
When we arrived back in Florence ready for more, we decided to go to a place where Lars and I once had a beer-date. On a bench.
We found some chairs this time and three beers later, the Muricans left. Yet, the four of us still weren’t done talking. So we ended up talking until 00, Lars and I missed the last train home and had to spend a spontaneous night in Florence. It was a good day.
The digital nomad lifestyle is not only about creating digital epicness to an awesome view over a Tuscan beach, it’s also about doing batshit crazy things. Like hanging on to your bare life, whilst you’re riding on the back of a former motorcycle World Champion – Troy Corser. See video below.
I’m not lying when I say his top speed must’ve been 250 km/t when we did the long wheelie that for me lasted 10 lifetimes. He also did some cute little tricks in the swings, like drifting with the motorbike. Yes, with me still on the back. I didn’t even know that motorcycles could drift. Like, don’t they just flip over and turn into a billion pieces?
Anyway, we survived. Proof on the picture below.
That day was me embracing my boyfriend’s digital nomad journey. How he combines his passion for motorcycling and living abroad. It is universal knowledge that Italy is blessed with some good motorcycle tracks and is also one of the reasons why we came here.
So yeah, I crashed the testosterone-party at Mugello Circuit, where he attended Race Academy. He learnt shitloads about motorcycling and I learnt shitloads about his world. Especially after I got the chance to try a pillon-ride with Troy Corser, “The Teacher” at Race Academy.
I’m truly grateful. I’ve always seen race motorcycling as men doing the “huga-buga” Silverback gestures, you know, thomping on their chest to show off their manhood. But, now I saw a different side to it. I saw a community with so much support and brotherhood. There is no: “Oh my God, look at him guys. Such a noobz.”. It’s people working for the same passion and having a mutual respect.
I also saw my man’s bravery, his drive and how he really is passionate about this. I have to say I got some extra butterflies in my stomach after this experience. So proud of you.
This experience has also learnt me another important lesson. It’s not always about me, me, me in relationships. Yes, I’m super spiritual and I have always had the belief that this motorcycle world is all about ego. So I have been fighting it. Fighting Lars. But, I see more love in this community. Even met a guy who is more empathic towards other human beings than vegans. Super blessed.
Right now I’m sitting at a Tuscan lake-beach heaven we randomly found the other day. I’ve found my laptop and accompanied myself with a cold, dewy Corona. This is really the spot I’ve always imagined myself working at as a digital nomad. Like, who wouldn’t like to work from a random beach, eh?
Also, everything that other digital nomads have said about these places, are true; it’s f****** warm, you can barely see the computer screen because of the light and the Wi-Fi connection, I guess, has seen stronger days. Bless.
Yet, I’m happy. Seriously for the first time in my adult life I actually feel like myself and this is exactly where I’m supposed to be. To be free and intuitive. And wiggle my butt wherever and whenever my butt wants to wiggle. It feels like there is nothing calling me home, because I am home. On Earth, the round little rock in the middle of this infinite universe where the inhabitants have decided to separate themselves with borders.
So yeah, I kind of very much like this way of living. Especially those days when doubt doesn’t kick in, because your former ego is calling you “home”. Or your bank balance is closing in on 0. I guess that’s the beauty of this lifestyle. In other words, I’m embracing every side of this journey.
Other cute journeys
This digital nomad journey also took me to some cute, desolate places these past days. We found this lake called Lago di Bilancino. So while Lars did his motorcycle thang, I went off with Opie for some adventure time. I even took my first underwater pictures. They’re crap, but I’ll get better.
And whilst I was super excited to finally post this very short and sweet blog post on the spot, my computer died. As some beautiful beach cafés don’t have an outdoor plug. I love my life.
I will keep it short and sweet this time, and let the pictures do the talking. I’m totally fried right now after some months as a digital nomad and I’m still trying to balance logistics, expenses, travelling and most importantly my dreams. Anyway, Estonia spat me out with 3 infections richer – totally not Estonia’s fault – and here I am, lying back in my Italian feeling sorry for myself. I guess that was the last drop to say that I need to slow down.
Enough about me, more about Estonia! Estonia once more was an amazing reminder of how amazing my birth country is and how my roots stand strong. Blessed to have a family who is as “crazy” as I am aka free spirited, open-minded, empathic and who has a lust to discuss worldly matters. Fuck capitalism and live more, you know. Therefore, yet again, we talked until the morning, discussed deep things, patterns and layers in people and in our family and yeah, just bonded and made up for some lost time.
I also got involved with two exciting projects – was interviewed for a school’s magazine on how it is to be an Estonian abroad (met the interviewer randomly in Venice) and got a volunteer job at Let’s Do It!, which is an NGO fighting illegal dumpsites and trash globally. I’m really excited.
Now, I’ll let the pictures do the talking.
Tallinn – Modern City versus Old Town
Viinistu – A charming, harbour town
Tammneeme – My dad’s roots
Pärnu – My mum’s roots
I’m proud to be Estonian by blood, although I know I’m a globalist at heart. Despite this, I know my digital nomad a** will be back in Estonia at some point, where I also want to give this amazing, innovative, hard-working country a voice and help to lift up what we have lost so many times under occupation – the love for freedom, nature and our culture.
I still remember the day when we had just left Denmark. We drove on the autobahn in Germany, embracing the fact that this highway was the start on our digital nomad life in Europe. I remember feeling true, genuine happiness knowing that we didn’t have a registered address anymore. From there on, we were heading towards an unknown era of freedom. Dreams manifesting and the whole shebang, you know.
First stop: Volta Mantovana
Our first AirBNB base was in Volta Mantovana, a place no one would randomly live in, where rumours abound and where a piece of renaissance still remains. The first thing we did was to pop a local white wine with our lovely host, Margaret. Fluffy kitties welcomed us, we had the sound of grasshoppers in the background and late talks about being globalists.
Sitting there sipping my wine, I was thinking; I can’t believe how blessed I am.
Second stop: Monsummano Terme
Well, around 10.000 km later, some dollars poorer and plenty of experiences richer – we are hereby announcing that we are super tired and somewhat broke. Therefore we have decided to be kind to ourselves and stay at a lovely little apartment in Monsummano Terme until mid-August! You really need to zoom in on Google Maps to even find the place, but the beauty of its location is that it’s actually right between Pisa and Florence. Aka, we can spare ourselves some kilometres and money, yet still see the best Italy has to offer.
Lars has his precious motorcycle track, Mugello, right next door and can embrace his inner world champion. I get to be an hour from the sea where I hopefully can start my underwater photography. Blub blub. We can explore the Tuscany area even more, drink some local Chianti wine and actually live a little. We also have pizza restaurant next door and the local “social-hangout-place” Tiffany’s. Ah, and the apartment has balcony, so that kind of won me over.
More posts will come about how we even managed to reach 10.000 km, how our mini-minivan Opie experiences his travels, some tips regarding a digital nomad life and all that. Stay tuned!