My name is Eef. I was born and grew up in one of Europe’s most densely populated areas: the provincial, residential area around Brussels. In this suburban maze I always felt something was missing. Right then and there, I couldn’t figure out what it was: I had many good friends, I have a great family, I had a good life. Yet something about it was not right. After doubting about my future in Belgium for a long time, one day I was sure I needed change. I had to leave.
Initially I moved to Sweden for a 2 year study program, though it turned out to be a long-term change. In Scandinavia I found what I was looking for, but never thought about in the crowds of home: the great outdoors. It was in Stockholm that I started hiking, climbing, paddling,… and met friends with similar interests.
The urge to be outside grew stronger. When I was about to finish my master’s in political science I realised I was still not on the right track. During a six month internship at a research institute in Stockholm I thought I was going to lose it. Would this be the rest of my life? Stuck in an office every single day from 9 to 5? I panicked. I spent the last 7 years studying a field I had no future in. That summer I went hiking in Sarek National Park in northern Sweden. That’s where I decided I would become a guide.
I left Stockholm the following autumn to start working as a musher.During that first season in Lapland I met PJ, who had also decided to change the prospect of office jobs for something entailing a little more time outside. Already living in Bodø in northern Norway it wasn’t such a long way for him to a job as an adventure guide in northern Sweden. Ever since we have been inseparable, exploring and traveling together.
That summer we moved to Flåm in the Norwegian fjords, enjoying as much time in the mountains as possible. The remoteness of the Scandinavian backcountry is where we feel free, and the mountains is where we feel at home. So now we are trying to create a future around this: a life on a slower pace, a life of enjoying simple things, a lifetime spent outside. We don’t see how we fit in offices or 9 to 5 jobs. We want to feel fresh air, to disappear off the grid and roam the remaining wild places on this planet.