What Happens in a ‘Year of Yes’?

A green tick in a green circle to indicate YES or correct

Earlier this year I made a rather extravagant statement about 2022 being my “Year of Yes”. I wanted to publicly and privately rebel against the endless ‘No’ and negativity of the last couple of Covid-impacted years.

If nothing else, my plan was to consciously change my mindset from one constantly limited by circumstances beyond my control, to one where I actively sought out things (read: travel adventures big and small) that brought me joy. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I am one of those people who thrive on experiencing new landscapes, cultures and challenges. Yes, I have my homebody moments too, but I always need to have something interesting sitting on the horizon or pencilled onto my calendar.

Sometimes I wish I was more content to take each day as it comes rather than forever looking forward, however, looking forward and being positive is exactly what my Year of Yes is all about.

So, what has the first six months delivered?

January – June 2022

  • Local Bushwalks: Joining my local bushwalking club has been one of the best things I have done. Yes, I have sacrificed some independence and flexibility of walking (when, where and how fast), but the benefits far outweigh any minor downsides. I have hiked in places I never knew existed and met a whole range of new, interesting people who also don’t mind a stroll.
  • Great Ocean Walk, Victoria: WOW, WOW, WOW! What an amazing and tough experience. For six days we scrambled up and down ridgelines along the glorious Victorian coastline from Apollo Bay to the Twelve Apostles. It blew the cobwebs out and reinforced what a privilege it is to enjoy living in a safe, free and ancient county like Australia. Read more about it here.
  • Work Trips: Yes, I do work although I much prefer to talk about travel than work. 😊 The beauty of my work is that I am self-employed and I am lucky to be able to squeeze in sneaky side trips to places like the Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens.
  • Great North Walk, NSW: The biggest challenge so far during my Year of Yes has been planning and completing the Great North Walk from Sydney to Newcastle – 15 days of bush, beach and bay views. Unfortunately, incredibly wet weather right along the NSW coast damaged the path and I was only able to complete the first two stages. It still felt wonderful to be out walking again, even if my original plans had to be postponed a little. Watch this space. Read more about it here.
  • Bondi to Manly Path, NSW: At last, I finished this epic path. I won’t bore you with a detailed description here as I wax lyrical, loud and long, elsewhere on this blog site. Suffice to say it is a ‘must do’! Read more about it here.

…and now, hold onto your hats…

July – December 2022

  • Great North Walk – Mach II: Yes, I am trying again in early August. The intervening time has allowed me to reconsider my original walk schedule and I have taken a more realistic approach to some big days/distances, cutting them in half. There is still one bridge that is impassable (and it is STILL bucketing rain all along the coast), but I have a non-purist Plan B to avoid the problematic bridge. Fingers crossed it all falls into place this time.
  • Three Capes Track, Tasmania: Four days of walking along a breathtakingly beautiful stretch of coastline, North of Hobart. Check it out here.
  • Light to Light Walk, NSW: Three more days of coastal walking (are you noticing a pattern here?) between Ben Boyd Tower and Green Cape Lighthouse on the far South coast of NSW near Eden. Check it out here.
  • Central West Cycle Trail, NSW: This one is still in the planning phase and it is looking like +/- seven days of around 400km of cycling through small villages and towns in Central West NSW. My poor old pushbike is covered in dust and I will have to get some serious training under my belt (or in my legs and butt) before setting out. Check it out here.
  • Manly to Palm Beach Trail, NSW: A little like the feel of the Bondi-to-Manly path, this unofficial path hugs the coastline for around 35km. I expect it will deliver endless views of pristine beaches and probably a fair bit of less attractive urban walking. I will split this into two easy days. No exact dates scheduled yet, but I am sure I will be able to fit it in somewhere before Christmas.
  • Work?: Yes, I need to allow for that to happen too, even if it just to fund all of the above!

…but, wait, there’s more! 2023 is shaping up very nicely too.

  • Borneo, South East Asia: Seven days checking out orangutans, sun bears and proboscis monkeys.
  • Camino combo in Spain: A return to the Camino Madrid/San Salvador/Primitivo that was Covid-cancelled in May 2020. Just over 800km of gorgeous Spanish scenery, bocadillos and good conversation with pilgrims from all over the World.
  • Larapinta Trail, Northern Territory: OMG! This one will be equal parts tough and mind-blowing. Fourteen days and 223km of walking through the West MacDonnell Range near Alice Springs in Central Australia. I have signed up with World Expeditions for this one due to its remoteness.
  • Bibbulmun Track, Western Australia: If I have any energy left in my legs and wanderlust in my heart, I will finish off the year setting out on the 1,005km trail from Perth to Albany in Western Australia. Phew! That will test my staying power.

While sometimes all these plans make my head spin a little, it also makes me very happy. I am saying ‘Yes’ to some of the many fabulous opportunities out there and embracing all that life has to offer.

I realise this approach will not suit everyone and I certainly am not sharing all of the above to show-off, big note or skite. All I can recommend is that you say ‘Yes’ to whatever brings you joy.

Here’s cheers to all of us saying ‘Yes’ more often.

What has been your big YES moment this year?

Be Happy. Source: pbperformance.com.au
Be Happy. Source: pbperformance.com.au

#ayearofyes #travelinspo #carpediem #seizetheday #embracinglife #dreamingoftravel #travelplans #seekingjoy #findingjoy #happydays #happiness #advenurebeforedementia #addictedtotravel

48 thoughts on “What Happens in a ‘Year of Yes’?

  1. Tiny Bookmite July 6, 2022 / 11:38 am

    What a year so far Mel, never mind the rest! (Rest? What rest? I doubt you’re getting much haha.)
    I said YES to getting both knees replaced and now I’m saying YES to as much exercise as I can handle to get fit again. As a result, I’ve said YES to a trip to Japan next year with the lovely granddaughter. That’s my big incentive to get the legs up and running – and the prospect of being able to travel again is so exciting!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 6, 2022 / 11:41 am

      Fabulous!! Two steps (or knees) backwards will allow you to sprint forwards! Your Japan trip will be amazing on every level. Can’t wait to hear all about it. x


    • Life...One Big Adventure July 6, 2022 / 11:52 am

      Yes, it is exciting. The only boring bit is all the training I should be doing! I know I should be out there with my loaded backpack on, but the weather has been a bit rough and it is much easier to stay inside and eat donuts! I will have to change my ways soon. I can’t wait for that little thrill that goes through me when the plane wheels leave the tarmac…. maybe not so much for you?? 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Suzanne July 6, 2022 / 1:29 pm

    Go Mel 🙂 I look forward to reading all about these trips in the meantime I will enjoy the Aussie ones. You must be very excited about all your upcoming trips. Not sure I could pick the one I would enjoy the most. Spain will always hold a special place in my heart so perhaps doing a long camino walk would be my favourite. Have fun enjoying the process of it all.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 6, 2022 / 2:27 pm

      I was thinking that I should have edited this post before it launched as what I wrote sounds so ‘certain’. No doubt there will be plenty more Plan Bs, Cs and Ds over the next 18 months. 🙂 Thanks for joining the journey. Have a good day.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Suzanne July 6, 2022 / 2:37 pm

        We live in an uncertain world so yes I think having various plans in place helps no matter what we do. Someone I know who was heading over to Portugal to do part of a camino had her air tickets cancelled. Her husband was telling mine. I must find how she got on, your post reminded me 🙂


        • Life...One Big Adventure July 6, 2022 / 2:43 pm

          Yes, it seems that some airlines have decided that ACTUALLY providing the flight is optional! I have heard of that happening quite a bit in Aus too. So disappointing and it will hardly encourage people to start traveling/flying again.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Suzanne July 6, 2022 / 2:47 pm

            Perhaps your plans for Australia walks is more achievable than overseas at least in the short term?

            Liked by 1 person

          • Life...One Big Adventure July 6, 2022 / 2:59 pm

            Definitely, but even domestically our flights are pretty hit and miss at the moment. It may be a case of ‘book a ticket’ and then ‘hope for the best’. Oh well, First World problem.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Teresa July 6, 2022 / 3:35 pm

    Such amazing walks you’ve achieved and so many awesome sceneries! So happy for you… Thanks for sharing them as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. restlessjo July 6, 2022 / 5:56 pm

    Fantastic! Cheers to controlling what you can and doing what makes you happy. You have so much coastling, Mel, and I don’t think you’ll relax till you’ve seen it all! We never know what’s around the corner so do it while you can. I envy the Tasmania trip. That looks such a beautiful place. I don’t have anything major in the offing. Just little jaunts here and there, but I do like to have a few things in the pipeline.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 7, 2022 / 11:12 am

      Even little jaunts make for a happy life. You are blessed to have so many fabulous places close by to jaunt. Have a happy day!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. wetanddustyroads July 6, 2022 / 8:09 pm

    Wow, I’m almost lost for words Mel! Your first 6 months were jampacked with lovely hikes … and the rest of the year looks equally great (that one in Tasmania will definitely provide views to die for … or not 😉). But hang on to your boots … I can’t wait for your hike in Spain next year … I will be in the front seat to follow you on this one!
    YES, good for you!
    My ‘yes’ is currently a bit scrambled … but we are getting to know a new part of South Africa and thoroughly enjoying every moment!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 7, 2022 / 11:13 am

      We all those times in our lives when things get a bit scrambled and moving house/home has to be up there with the biggest scramble of all! No doubt you will have lots of fun exploring your new patch as you settle in.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Toonsarah July 6, 2022 / 11:18 pm

    Like you I love to have plans on the horizon or at least a rough idea of possible future trips in the offing. Unlike you, I’m not a great walker, so I admire your energy and stamina to take on all these long distance paths. The plan I really envy though is the Borneo trip – somewhere I’ve often thought about visiting but so far not managed to do so. I’ll be excited to read about your adventures there next year!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 7, 2022 / 11:16 am

      I will keep you posted. It is going to be our first real guided tour, so that will be interesting in itself! It may be our first AND last! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Toonsarah July 7, 2022 / 5:26 pm

        A group tour or private? We enjoy the latter (preferably with a variety of guides rather than the same one all the time) but group tours can be hit or miss. They depend so much on the others in the group, which you can’t control! We had great experiences in Japan and on our Galapagos cruise, but have had the odd disruptive character on the other few group tours we’ve done!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Life...One Big Adventure July 8, 2022 / 9:24 am

          It will be a group tour and, Yes, there is always that ‘one’ person. I guess it is a matter of taking the good with the bad. First World problem! 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

          • Toonsarah July 8, 2022 / 5:36 pm

            Exactly so! And I’ve always found that the ‘one’ person has a beneficial effect in binding the rest of the group together 😆

            Liked by 1 person

  7. travelling_han July 7, 2022 / 2:28 am

    Your say yes year looks absolutely AMAZING so far Mel, wow! The walks you’ve done are just stunning. Like you, I’m also having a yes year and loving ittttt 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Rowbought July 7, 2022 / 3:11 am

    Wow Melanie, that all looks so amazing! Do keep it in mind that there is a tentative plan to have a 10 year Camino Frances reunion fall 2023. We had planned to do part of the Portuguese Camino this fall but are re-evaluating because of the new Covid strains. That would be a NO moment. My YES moment is doing a lot of day hikes in our own area, keeping myself in shape for the future!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 7, 2022 / 11:19 am

      Staying local while all this Covid-kerfuffle settles is a good plan. It will be very interesting to see the changes it has made to the Camino. I suspect it will not be as straight-forward as it used to be. Buen camino to you on your local strolls… Mel


  9. Heyjude July 7, 2022 / 7:04 pm

    Gosh Mel, your enthusiasm and joy de vivre puts me to shame! Once I had the travel bug, but it seems to have deserted me now, I don’t even feel inclined to explore close to home! I wish I was as keen a walker as you or even Jo, but I’m not. My daughter keeps saying I should get a dog, but then there is the problem of what to do with it when/if I do feel like going away! I enjoy reading about your adventures and look forward to what’s to come. Whereabouts are you based in Aus then? I thought you were in Melbourne, but a lot of your walking has been in NSW. Which appears to be very wet once again. Good luck with all the plans xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 8, 2022 / 9:26 am

      Sorry, I didn’t write this to shame anyone – more to encourage people to do seek out what makes them happy. Before Covid life was so ‘easy’ and predictable, now I think we need to live more consciously or proactively. My approach won’t suit or appeal to everyone. 🙂 I live roughly in the middle of NSW, hence my love of coastal walks. They are such a contrast to my normal landscapes. Have a happy day, Mel x


      • Heyjude July 8, 2022 / 5:22 pm

        I love your enthusiasm. I just seem to have slipped into content retirement and I don’t think all the lockdowns have helped. My happy place is my garden and ‘my’ hill. 😊 I remember now, don’t you live near Jane in Mudgee? Great name.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Life...One Big Adventure July 11, 2022 / 2:06 pm

          Thank goodness all our happy places look very different, otherwise it could get a tad cosy! 🙂 Your garden and hill sound like just the place to be – especially in your Spring and Summer. Yep, you nailed the location. 🙂 Have a good day.


  10. Monkey's Tale July 10, 2022 / 6:47 am

    You did accomplish a lot in the first six months! I’d love to do the Tasmanian hike with you, maybe someday I’ll get back to Australia. You’ll love Borneo. Do you dive? Sipadan has amazing diving. Maggie

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 11, 2022 / 2:09 pm

      Tasmania is a hiker’s heaven. So much beauty packed into one little island. You are welcome to join me anytime. No, not a diver – I live too far from the sea, but definitely a water baby! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. jasonlikestotravel July 12, 2022 / 10:16 pm

    Lots of walking done and plenty to look forward to too! Some of the views are spectacular, Borneo should be an incredible experience too!
    My big ‘yes’ of the year was actually an “I do” haha. A pretty big one though!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Master of Something Yet July 13, 2022 / 8:28 am

    Gosh, such a jam packed year that has been and is yet to come! Thank you for the boost. Having recently returned from a solo walk that had its challenges my yes was wavering but you have reinspired me.

    If the GNW takes much longer to reopen we may be walking it together in September. 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    • Life...One Big Adventure July 13, 2022 / 8:46 am

      I am now up to Mach III for the GNW as the bridge is still closed up until 31 August. I recommend you keep your eye on the NSW NPWS Alerts list and NSW Forests Facebook page. My plan is now to walk from Hornsby to Brooklyn in early August and try to finish the rest (11 days) in November. You will finish it before me IF everything is open again. Fingers crossed! Happy trails.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Master of Something Yet July 13, 2022 / 1:32 pm

        Mm. Sounds like I might have to have some contingency plans up my sleeve. Not so easy for me just to pop back. I will need to do something with my two weeks.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Life...One Big Adventure July 13, 2022 / 1:54 pm

          Yes, I looked at bypassing the broken bridge by road walking from Kariong Scout Camp to Somersby (about 17k), but that doesn’t help if the Watagans are still closed. It has just been so wet, the countryside is giving way… Good luck!

          Liked by 1 person

  13. I. J. Khanewala July 17, 2022 / 11:45 am

    That’s a fantastic amount of revenge travel! Envy, envy ….
    Especially the proboscis monkey

    Liked by 1 person

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