The Next Big Adventure

So sorry dear readers (all six of you), if it seems I fell into the abyss. My last entry was from Malaysia, which seems about a million years ago.  I will catch you up to speed….


Malaysian hot pot seems like ages ago

After Malaysia I headed back to Indonesia, a place that has a magnetic  pull for me, and landed in Ubud Bali.  The first time I went to Ubud,  I sorta liked it, but couldn’t wrap my head around why every traveler so was wistful about the place. Sure it was “arty” and it had great food, but the traffic and constant “transport” touts wore me out. The second time I liked it even less. So, why go back, you ask… hmmm, I can’t really say. But there I was. After settling in (because I needed a settling in sort of place at this point in my travels) I got it. I met great people, I fell into the rhythm of the town and I fell in love with this smallish city in the hills of Bali.


one of the more interesting marketing strategies for transport in Ubud

At this point I had my ticket home and I was filled with anxiety.I wanted to stay on the road but I was running out of money and staying wasn’t an option. Quiet desperation set in. I scoured websites and talked to everyone I knew about strategies for being an expat. Barring finding a big ol’ pot of cash, there was nothing I could do (nursing is basically slave labor in the developing world) sure I could volunteer until the cows came home, but that doesn’t buy a girl a roof over her head, not to mention cocktails. Sigh. More anxiety. More desperation.


Volunteering with Muriel’s eyeglasses foundation

You see, I had changed. My world view had changed. What I wanted from my life had changed. I knew that if I went back to my old life (which by most standards was a pretty good one) I would regret it. As much as I liked being a nurse I could no longer work in the crazy dysfunctional world that is the US healthcare system. It is untenable and unsustainable. It is system that is unfair, extremely sad. The more I thought about it the more anxious I became.

But it isn’t just working in the US that overwhelms me: It’s living here. Every moment of every day seems to be scheduled. Iphones, laptops, siri, traffic, and all the stuff it takes to feed the machine of  “a good life”.  I worked my ass off to pay a mortgage, insurance (homeowners, car, umbrella, medical, life….good grief), taxes (I’m not going to complain about taxes because I value what my taxes provide and think we as a nation would be better off if those who could, paid more) but none of those things seemed to add value to my life.  I want a life that is slower, more reflective, and doesn’t require me to have a calendar in hand when I get invited to lunch.


Island life with my girls Ayu & Sophie

In March I headed back to Gili Trawangan to meet up with my Jakarta girls for our annual pilgrimage. While there I stumbled upon some new bungalows. They were clean & new & had a pool!


my new home!

One day I was chatting with the owner, an affable aussie, and sharing my anxieties.  He said, “well these bungalows are for sale”  The universe will present us with life changing opportunities if we just listen. The question was : Was I going to put my money where my mouth was or just whine about the state of my life?  I looked at his books, we talked about a price and if I sold everything I owned I could swing it. So I made an offer. And he accepted. Holy shit.

So here I am. In Portland. (A great hometown if there ever was one.) Working like crazy (thanks Nancy for believing I was a worthwhile, albeit short term investment), living out of rubbermade totes & planning the next phase of my life.

It begins November 1st.  Stay tuned. It’s going to be amazing.

For a preview go to



About Miss Q

I am a travel obsessed foodie, with an inexplicable love of clamato, elvis costello & the unknown
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20 Responses to The Next Big Adventure

  1. Charlene McCreight says:

    Good luck on your new adventures…… keep us updated!

  2. Crescent says:

    I am SOOO excited for you Suzanne!! This a Wonderful Thing!!

  3. Greg says:

    Many threaten to do so but only the brave few do. Good luck lady.

  4. Vicki says:

    wow. that just left my hair standing on end! thanks for sharing your adventures, but even more your thoughts. I can’t tell you enough how much I’ve enjoyed it. I hope you continue to send updates! All the best! Vicki

  5. Wendy says:

    I’m excited for you and excited to visit you and do my refresher dive course. A wonderful adventure and new chapter awaits!

  6. norma lovell says:

    loved all your blogs-we don’t travel much anymore -so love reading about yours& in such exotic places!Hope you will love your next adventure–talk about culture shock !cheers to ya -Norma Lovell

  7. Wendy Thesenga says:

    Hey! You used my quote! So true though isn’t it!! -W

  8. Michael says:

    Suzanne …Spirit. Joy. Inspiration. Freedom. Life. So happy for you

  9. Jodi says:

    So Beautiful! So you!

  10. Lynn says:

    Suzanne, You are so in touch with who you are and this has been such an important achievement of your voyage. Now you have another voyage ahead of you and I wish you the best!

  11. BusyLizzy says:

    When I first heard about your intentions to do this, I had a massive lump i my stomach. Not because of nerves for you – but because this is the sort of thing that I want to do every since returning from my big trip and I was envious, thrilled and frustrated all at once! Everything I have done since returning home has been to work towards something similar…. a single purpose goal. For various reasons it’s just not the right time… but it’s the goal that I continue to work towards for another year or so. I will follow you with pride and fascination – and hopefully will get a chance to meet you over there. Enjoy the new adventure!

    • Miss Q says:

      Lisa, I so hope you get to realize your dream.soon. I hope you come visit. I know i will be planning a visit to NZ in the not so distant future.

      • BusyLizzy says:

        Oh don’t worry. The dream WILL happen. It’s just a timing thing at the moment. In the interim, I will have to settle for quick jaunts of 4 weeks of less :-/ for another year or two. Definitely let me know if you are coming to NZ – there’s a spare room if you ever need it!

  12. Bruce Thesenga says:

    Holly Shit is right!!! Talk about a life changing event. Although I support your decision and am kind of envious, I still think you should find and marry some old ugly very rich guy who only has a few months to live……or a young good looking rich guy to spend your life with. Keep us informed about the newest of your adventures………Bruce & Judy

  13. This is the right thing, at the right moment. Congratulations on being clear enough to see that, and brave enough to take the leap.

  14. Margaret Goff says:

    Have fun on your next adventure! Thinking of you! Can’t wait to see you in Gili! Safe travels tomorrow!

    xoxoxo margaret and laris

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