FINDING A HOME IN A NOMAD LIFE | column

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COLUMN, FASHION, HOME, TRAVEL

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i’m used to this by now – never really feeling at home. i’ve been moving quite often my whole life, making me keep in mind that there will always be a new place. a new move. a new city. new people.

i understand that this must seem strange and maybe even unhealthy to a lot of people. that having a place that feels like home is a universally vital priority for your happiness.

what about berlin, i get asked. isn’t berlin good enough to be called home ?
berlin is brilliant. it’s an amazing place that i would be proud to call my home. but i don’t.

the reason for this simply being that i know myself. i know that i won’t stay in berlin my whole life. i won’t invest enough in the place to learn the language, memorise the street names, or claim the city as my own. because there are too many places out there. a whole world to discover and i just couldn’t settle with ‘good enough’.

let’s be honest. i don’t think there is a single city out there wonderful enough to be called my permanent home. i might be wrong and if so i’d be the first to happily admit my mistake. but i don’t think a city will ever be home to me.

i do have a home though. a place where i feel totally at ease and i never get bored with. somewhere i don’t feel the need to move on or escape from. a place so good to me that i’m willing to invest in it. a place called the internet.

there are people in my life that i’ve known a long time. before this career of mine or this urge to stay online. people who tell me how nice it is to meet irl, to hang out with the ‘real’ jenny. i never know what to say to this. because that jenny, the jenny they knew before i became a content creator, she doesn’t exist anymore. the online jenny is more real than the person they’re thinking of ever was.

because online, i belong. i’ve always been something of an outsider. and online i still am. i look weird and choose an alternative lifestyle and whatever. but online, unlike ‘real’ life, i have a community of a quarter million people who are outsiders with me. who understand and encourage me. who are happy outsiders together with me. and i’ve never felt so accepted and true to myself.

the online jenny is the real jenny. and that’s all i could ask for in a home – to feel comfortable enough to express who i really am.

so no matter if i’m in my apartment in berlin or, like now, in a sunny apartment overlooking koreatown and hollywood – it makes little difference.
because as long as i have wifi, i’m home.

love // jenny

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bering rings*

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14 Comments

  1. Wow, I was just having this convo this morning. I’ve lived outside of my country for eight years and relished being an outsider. Now that I am “back home,” it is a different challenge to feel like I don’t belong. My friends communication is largely through Internet anyway, so maybe I, too should just embrace it. Your words came at the perfect moment, as I have walked through today fighting what feels like a profound sadness (at this realization that I may not “belong” yet again, as I have all my life). I came to your website in search of solace, and there it was. Thanks again. (And I, too lived in Berlin until recently!)

  2. Loved it. I live in Kostanay, north of Kazakhstan, with my parents. We have changed so many apartments, that we start joking that we are back to the “nomadic lifestyle”. But, while living with them, i don’t feel quite free (but that’s another story).

  3. It’s an interesting point you’re making! I personally left my “home” country 5 years ago. I come from a stiff and uptight social background, which always felt very violent to me – my 3 siblings started a career as managers and business people. And i’m becoming an artist. So i never really felt understood. I was the weird kid at school. But funnily enough, Berlin feels like a home now. I think it’s a good place for “outsiders”. You can be whoever you want, however you want. Nobody will give a shit. There’s always gonna be weirder than you and that’s fine. But the internet is a good place to call home. Maybe it’s my third home. After my boyfriend. And Berlin. Or and maybe my awesome flatmates.
    I loved that article Jenny. Enjoy the time in the US!

  4. I hope to achieve a digital nomad with my boyfriend one day. :) It was so great meeting you and your boyfriend today. You look lovely in thsi minimal look at the Walt Disney Concert Hall! I hope you get to capture lots of great photos in LA during your time here.

    BLOG | YOUTUBE | INSTAGRAM

  5. Jasmina Tekic

    Living nomadic life with a boyfriend, partner,.. family,… is not the same as living a nomadic life as a single person. When you move with your partner then no matter where you are your micro world is always the same. However, if you move as a single person, then your whole world changes. You find yourself in a new country, knowing absolutely no one,… and in every country there would be a new best friend, a new boyfriend, a new colleague,… who would disappear from your life once you move again. I lived in very different parts of the world, and each time I moved I would lose some people from my life, they might as well be dead because most of them I never saw after I moved,… even today I am still traveling a lot,… but not really moving,… and one thing I really miss while living in different parts of world was living with animals and heaving pets. Oh, that is a huge price if you love animals.

  6. I found an online home many years ago, in a forum which was more like a true community than anything I’d ever experience in the “real” work. These days, I work over the internet – I’m a coach working through Skype – and very much feel at home there.
    BUT, I have to say that having a physical place with vibes and local spirits and all, is amazing, too. I’ve moved around too much from country to country to really find just one place like that, but the West of Ireland has certainly become my home. I find it’s not mutually exclusive with the virtual one.

  7. I found my home in my partner; I feel at home when we are together. Be it at out actual home, or away travelling. I’m so very grateful and feel lucky that I found that, but it also creates some challenges, like it is so difficult for us to make new friends IRL (we love old ones, but they are insanely busy having kids, and we are not planning to). We are both introverted (to different degrees), and we just have so much fun together, it always seems like it is less fun when other people are there (we just “get” each other). At the same time, we think it is nice to have experiences that are shared with other people, too, and learn more about the world by being in other people’s lives. Any advice on how to deal with that? It seems like you guys are so effortless at making friends, or do you also rely on each other’s company mostly?

  8. Wow, this is very brave statement. I have never had an idea to be able to see home in the internet. But as you explained it, it kind of makes sense. Yeah, this really hit me :) thanks jenny for discovering new horizons for me. I think i would never feel at home online – i am not that kind of person because i need a lot of time for myslef being offline.
    Of course i have my home which i love and i would never want to change anything. I still live with my parents on countryside while being in our capital on weekdays at school. But recently i have started to feel i need something which is really my home made by myself. So i see myself at home surrounded by my own partner and children where i could feel really free with people who i love the most.
    And of course, the most important thing is to find home inside your heart and to feel comfortable and safe in your own skin. :)

  9. Wow, since you’re living in Korea Town, look up Kusala Bhikshu. A Zen monk I follow on the internet and a very cool person!

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