On the road

Mariana Machado
2 min readJul 8, 2023

Some say home is where our heart is and while I usually just saw that as a cheesy saying, I’m starting to actually believe it.

I’ve always needed my space and being alone for long periods of time. Back when I was younger, that usually meant staying in my bedroom for a while, reading a book or listening to the same song on my iPod. Home at the time was comfort, security and family.

Then, I grew up and my definition for what being home meant started to shift. I’ve realised I’ve lived in 9 different places over the past 31 years. I first moved when I was ten so I don’t really remember how I felt at the time, but all other times I’ve settled in in just 2 or 3 days and they instantly felt like home. Home then was independence, being alone and making my own rules.

Fast forward to this year and over the last 6 months, I don’t think I’ve stayed more than 2 weeks in the same place. Whether that’s because I’m juggling my time between Lisbon and Braga, or whether I’m travelling, the truth is I’m always on the move. Of course I’m super privileged to have a job that allows me to work from anywhere as without that I obviously wouldn’t be able to keep this up. I have to say living off a backpack can be stressful but so far I’m loving it.

So what’s home now? Sometimes it’s my house in Lisbon or my mother’s place in Braga, and others I feel at home just by listening to a specific song on my AirPods while I’m recharging my social batteries. Home now is freedom.

As I’m writing this on a bus, I can’t wait to see what the next 6 months bring me. I’m going back to Braga for 3 or 4 days, then Lisbon and then France. I have no idea what’s next for me but for now I’ll keep enjoying this lifestyle and just go with the flow.

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Mariana Machado

I used to dream about becoming a poet and I’ve always loved writing, so I made it my job.