If things were ‘normal’ right now, then today would be the first day of the Easter holidays, and right now, me and my family would be on our way to the airport to take our flight to Singapore and then on to Danang and Hoi An in Vietnam for our long awaited holiday.

Our family adventure. Our chance to relax, to re-bond, to explore a new place together. The planning and the build up of excitement to this was helping me get through a busy term at school.

Anyone who knows me well, will know that I have an insatiable wanderlust; a need to travel, to holiday, to experience new culture, to revisit the places that I visited as a young traveller, and more recently, to give my young children those experiences that helped shape my own character. Many of my values stem from the experiences I had as a traveller. They fuelled my curiosity for diversity, for harmony, for sustainability and respectful relationships. Adventure and travel are in my soul. They are part of my purpose and destiny. The following quote has always resonated with me.

For me, adventure isn’t defined by adrenaline inducing activities, or flirting with danger. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done my fair share of white water rafting, sky diving and partying until sunset. I loved every second (and I’d do it all again in a heart beat!) But now, adventure is the exploration of unknown places, venturing into a new world and immersing myself in a culture that is different and more diverse than my own.

I daydream of revisiting the bustling streets of China Town, Singapore. I pine to feel the warm waves of the South China Sea lap at my feet in Malaysia. I long to sit on the edge of the hot, dusty main street in Cherating, to watch the warrung owners perform the ritual of ‘tea tarik’ (literally, stretched tea) whilst eating nasi goreng with my fingers and practicing my Bahasa Malay with the locals.

Grieving for this latest adventure sounds terribly privileged and self indulgent, but for me it’s an internal emotional and cultural fix that I long for and I work hard for. I’ve re-framed the situation from having a cancelled holiday to postponing an adventure for a safer time. Good things come to those who wait and all that!

As a family, we are now being creative with trying to recreate a sense of adventure to replace the one that’s on hold. We are fortunate enough to live in the countryside, so even with the social distancing in full swing we are still able to walk or cycle for miles without seeing another soul. This week we climbed tall trees and ran down steep hills. We took the girls out on a proper mountain bike ride for the first time. It was awesome to hear their gleeful shrieks as they sped downhill on the empty roads. On our walks across the fields, we’ve watched them role play as fairies using their ‘powers’ to create imaginary potions and spells. They are still experiencing adventure. It’s not quite on a scale that satisfies my soul, but watching them happy and curious brings a real sense of joy.

As for me, I’ve navigated the sweet scented streets of Hoi An this week, as well as a trek in the leafy Blue Mountains and a stroll along a white sandy beach in Cape Panwa, Phuket. Instagram is giving me a superficial fix for now. I plan on immersing myself in some fiction set somewhere exotic too. I’ve even leafed through my trusty Lonely Planet Australia (2002 edition). Happy memories.

Adventure may be postponed, but I’m grateful to be able to explore some beautiful locations from my sofa whilst waiting for this all to pass. The adventure is yet to come.