Your Digital Nomad featuring in Dutch magazine ‘Zin’

Below is the English translation of an interview for the Dutch magazine ‘Zin’.

“For two years I travelled in a van through the Australian Outback”

In 2015 Marcel Baaijens (1956), left his job as art educator to become a digital nomad.

“ I feel at home in many places. Today I will arrive in Paris, and two days later I will travel to Greece, with no idea of where I will go next.

A digital nomad can work anywhere: like next to the Eiffel Tower.

I traveled all my life, but took the plunge to become a digital nomad on May 5th, 2015 (Dutch Liberation Day). A few years earlier I became seriously ill with mercury poisoning. Healing from mercury poisoning is a slow process that can take at least 5 years. Doing that while working full-time was extremely challenging. Maintaining my job as an art educator was no longer sustainable. I resigned and rekindled a dormant project, Sitdance.

Sitdance offers seated dance programme for elders in aged care facilities, and DVD-based resources for activities staff. This work does not require me to stay in any particular location. I bought a second-hand van to travel through the Outback of Australia, and wrote, composed, produced, filmed, and edited the ‘Sitdance Downunder’ and ‘Dance to Remember’ programmes.

Travelling through the outback gave me a different perspective on life.

Since April 2017 I am producing further programmes for which I need to travel through Europe, without a van. I stay mainly with family, friends, and use guesthouses and AirBnB’s. I have no idea what my future will hold, all I know is that I will continue this lifestyle for a little while longer.”

Footnote: This interview took place in October 2017. At the moment I am spending 5 months in Australia in a different van, promoting Sitdance. I will also visit New Zealand and Nepal before returning to Europe in May for the remainder of 2018.

3 ‘Rhythm Beats (dementia) Blues’ workshops scheduled for Melbourne.

Lifestyle Coordinators in Melbourne: 3 ‘Rhythm Beats (dementia) Blues’ workshops have been scheduled for the Melbourne area. They are held by aged care facilities in Hawthorn, Werribee, and Geelong. If you are interested in attending let me know and I will connect you to the organisers. If you want to organise a 2-hour workshop yourself, get in touch a.s.a.p. I will be in the Melbourne area till early February, after which I will travel to Canberra, Sydney, New Zealand, and back to New South Wales, before heading to Europe in May.
 
‘Rhythm Beats (Dementia) Blues’ enables family members and care volunteer/staff of those with advanced dementia to establish a non-verbal, meaningful, connection and interaction using rhythm. The technique is beneficial for both the receiver, the giver, and their relationship. See this short trailer for more. https://youtu.be/Owl5o_EEiYM