Then there’s the solitary work space.
I initially thought that I’d split my work between my room and the common room. But for the reasons above, working in the shared space seems really inappropriate. It’s fine to take a laptop down there and casually surf the web, but real work requires real focus – and that means blocking people out. A hostel thrives on people talking and sharing ideas and experiences, so staring at your laptop intently almost feels like an act of aggression.
So I don’t do that anymore. Instead, I stay in my room.
I’m glad to have my own room, but it is just one room. One third is devoted to sleeping, one third to gear and the final third to my office.
The office third is always visible. So, when I’m in bed, I’m also in the office, and when I’m sorting out my gear I’m still in the office.
The office is really just a small desk propped up by four fruit cans, itself propping up a tiny 11″ Macbook Air laptop and a few sticky notes.
The laptop is both my unique travel diary and my stock development environment. It’s my creative outlet and my nagging TODO list. It gives me freedom from a real office desk, but it tethers me to this one. And anyone that has ever suffered from the stiff neck that I have now, can attest to the fact that a laptop is not actually designed for use on your desk, let alone your lap.
It’s both absolute freedom and a dull, lonely cage.
The life of a digital nomad is supposed to be wonderful. But it seems that, when you’re working from home, you only succeed in making your home into a work place.