I’m delighted to present an exclusive sneak peek book excerpt for my new travel memoir ‘Backpacker to Nomad’
What’s Backpacker to Nomad? It’s my new travel memoir, chronicling the evolution from naive newbie to full-time traveller through my adventure & misadventures.
Backpacker to Nomad overview:
• Trapped with a lunatic pilot en route to a deserted Island in Australia where a cold hard reality hits like a freight train…
• Unknowingly scaling active volcanoes in New Zealand with harsh consequences…
• Being completely broke but having his adrenaline jacked to the max…
• Experiencing a euphoric natural high in the heartlands of Jurassic Laos…
Through the thrills and spills of his early calamitous struggles with solo travel to the crazy adventures and misadventures he encounters with travel companions, from Australia to Southeast Asia comfort zones are smashed, crippling fears are faced, there’s the odd brush with death and the realities of long-term travel hit hard. While despair is never far away this remarkable journey feels like living in an alternate reality – But it isn’t, It’s British backpacker Amit’s new nomadic life.
Amit shares a collection of candid, thought provoking yet humorous travel stories from a ‘take the rough with the smooth five year journey. He provides a unique perspective on life, shows the transformation he undertakes from backpacker to nomad and reveals just why he cannot return to ‘normal’ life in this travel memoir sure to fill you wanderlust and laughs!
If you love travel adventures, discovery, escaping reality to drift off to lands far and wide this is the book you need to pick up.
Book Launched: July 27th 2022
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Sit back, grab a snack and enjoy …..
Great barrier reef highs & lows overview
Just a few days ago Amit experienced the greatest natural high of his life but what goes up must come down – with a huge thud! His bad news from Sydney was eating away at him but that wasn’t all – a fear needed to be conquered!
the Great barrier reef
The giant ball of fire high in the sky reflected a fusion of turquoise and emerald off the swaying ocean all the way to the horizon. The soft lapping of the waves was all that could be heard. It had been an incredible couple of days, from jumping out of the plane over it to floating on the Great Barrier Reef.
My sense of smell was lost due to the sea salt filling every particle in the air, clinging on to my clothes, attached to my skin and every nose hair. Even the coffee fumes lifting from the mug smelt like salt by the time it reached my nose. There was no sign of land, there hadn’t been for two days since we left the coast behind. We were in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef—everything should be perfect right now, but as is the case when there is a soaring high, there is the inevitable crash. What goes up, must come down.
While everybody else—including my friends—were sizzling like sausages desperate to tan on the front deck, the small upper area to the back was where I’d been hiding since morning, alone with nothing but the sound of the waves and my thoughts.
Why can’t I just be like everybody else on this boat, just enjoying it without having that fucking dark cloud get darker by the minute? I hate feeling this shitty when I should be in a perfect state of serenity. I’m on the Great Barrier Reef for fuck’s sake!
Swimming in my thoughts
The boat rocked a little, spilling my remaining coffee into the sea. My free hand clutched the metal rail, which was all the protection there was from falling overboard. And with my luck, that wasn’t as far-fetched as it seemed. As the boat settled back to just softly bobbing from side to side—and before my thoughts could start spinning once again—Tom’s voice sprang up from behind.
‘Geeza, here you are. Not seen you all morning; thought we’d lost you. What are you doing back here?”
“Nothing, mate, just taking in the view. What’s up?”
“Lies! You’re all in your feelings, aren’t you? What happened to the guy from the other day, Mr I’m-not-going-to-think-about-it-any-more? Look where you are. Did you ever think in your life you would be floating around on the Great Barrier Reef?”
“Yeah, I know. I want to just enjoy it but I can’t. It’s just fucking there!”
“Because you’re letting it. Geeza, sometimes it’s like you enjoy feeling like crap. Come on, there are some islands that only appear at certain times of the day. We’re heading out to them. Let’s go, no more feeling sorry for yourself.”
In the middle of the great barrier reef
Finally, I detached myself from the rails, turning to see Tom standing on the ladder—his bright-red face matching his red cap.
“Seriously, mate, you need to get some shade. You’re going to burn your face off.”
“I’ll get shade when you stop feeling sorry for yourself,” he laughed back, disappearing from sight.
I left my thoughts behind on the back deck, joining back up with the other two and a number of strange faces and voices who were also on the boat. This wasn’t a party boat like we opted for on the Whitsundays. Everybody on this one was here to dive, snorkel, and experience the majestic Great Barrier Reef sober.
Everybody lined up towards the back of the boat, getting into rubber dinghies in groups of six. The two girls instantly started to take pictures of nothing but ocean. Although the giant ball of fire was still high in the sky, at sea level, it was blustery enough for my hood to slide on without any assistance.
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Follow British backpacker Amit’s humorous wild ride into nomad life. From his early calamitous struggles with solo travel, the odd brush with death, to ghetto snobbing (his words), it’s been a ‘take the rough with the smooth’ type of journey
Don’t just imagine the journey – see it through this FREE photo album
But I was the only one in a hoodie—everybody else was in swimwear. One of the crew members stopped the motor as everybody looked around while bobbing up and down to the motion of the soft waves, wondering where the islands were—there was no sight of them.
Was this a trick? Are we about to be thrown into the middle of the ocean as shark food? Where is this island? asked an inner voice.
Why? Why even think that? replied the other.
Just saying. It’s like a scene from a gangster movie—taken out, murdered, and dropped in the ocean as shark food.
All of a sudden, a collective gasp rose. A small golden mound of sand peeked from the ocean to reveal itself. It wasn’t even big enough for one person to stand on, and the dinghy was quite far away, but it kept growing, revealing more sandy mass.
walking on the great barrier reef
“That’s pretty fucking cool.” I nodded in appreciation.
“Yeah, pretty gnarly, hey? The reef is full of magic like this,” beamed the crew member.
The cloud was gone, all my thoughts cleared while I marvelled at the sight of the island, which was growing bigger by the second. The crew member explained it was due to the time of day and the sun. When the sea levels dropped, lots of these little sand islands revealed themselves.
Once the all-clear was given, everybody jumped off the dinghies into the clearest water imaginable. My feet planted in the wet sand. The water was only knee-high, but instantly, a scream flew out of my mouth. It was like standing in a bucket of ice. They all laughed as I tried to high-tail it on to the sandy mound, but once the initial bolts of shivers had run through me, it felt quite pleasant.
My feet stopped running, feeling every grain of wet sand rolling and tickling the soles of my feet like a soft grainy massage while moulding around them. Clumps of sand stuck to my feet as I finally got out of the water and on to the dry mound. Although it had just risen from the ocean, the sand was already dry.
The cloud lifts
My friends were all busy taking countless pictures. Following a rave in the middle of the sand dunes back in Mildura, I was camera-less. Turns out, using a large plastic container lid as a sledge to sandboard is not a good idea. That night, I lost a phone and a camera, along with a wallet and a little dignity.
“Fucking hell, Amit’s actually smiling. Not seen that since you landed back on Earth from jumping out a plane.” Tom laughed.
“Are you kidding me? How could I not be smiling? Look at this, we’re standing in the middle of the freaking Great Barrier Reef. Like, fucking literally standing in the middle of the ocean.”
“Yeah, boi! Walking on water now and we’ll be inside it later on… feared, bro!” He burst out laughing, stepping to the side where waves started to roll in.
“And you had to go and ruin it.”
“Nah, bro, so feared. You know you love it!”
In what world
In what world would a guy, who had repeatedly been told there was no hope in life and wouldn’t succeed at anything, be standing on a mound of sand in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef My life is ridiculous.
Attention shifted to a swarm of chip-stealing seagulls appearing from nowhere, interrupting the laughter and calm waves with their defeating chirps.
Where did they come from? Did they spot breakfast while flying past or are they keeping distance from becoming something else’s breakfast? Sharks… are there sharks close by?
The Great Barrier Reef was teeming with all kinds of tropical sea life, which was another reason why people came out here—to see and experience the corals and the marine life. We would also be finding Nemo later on in the day and an opportunity to confront a huge fear of mine.
The ocean lapped around, although we had been on the boat for a couple of days with no sight of land, this was a completely surreal feeling. The ocean had started to reclaim the mound, which was our signal to leave after a quick flurry of pictures.
Read the full great barrier reef story in the new travel memoir
This was just the start of the story, nothing is ever how it seems, adventures can easily turn into misadventures on the drop of the hat and not revealed itself yet.
If you enjoyed the start of this story and want to read the FULL CHAPTER simply click the button below
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