If you’ve ever wished to leave your computer desk, head out the door, pick up your cat and see the world – you could be just like Richard East.
After ten years of ‘working the corporate world’, he decided to sell his things and travel Australia with his cat by his side.
“One day I decided to make a change, to learn how to be grateful for every day. I worked from the ground up to create a new life for myself keeping what would make me happy and getting rid of everything else,” he told UniLad.
“The new life I had planned was to live in a camper van, work only when needed and learn to be content.”
Originally he hadn’t planned to bring a cat with him after he left his Hobart office job. But when he thought about how he promised to look after his black rescue cat Willow, he knew he shouldn’t abandon her too.
“I decided to take her with me and since leaving Hobart in May 2015, we’ve travelled to every state and territory in Australia – this is known in Aussie adventure cat slang as a Purrfect-Eight.”
Since then, they’ve seen the Great Barrier Reef, crossed the Australian deserts, and parked their caravan on beaches, forests and any available plains.
“Willow has a tracking collar so if she did decide to wander off I can find her straight away. She’ll stay close to me and loves to nap on the roof under the solar panel, whereas in winter, she’ll sleep under my blankets all day.”
Richard says he and his black cat have an ‘unspoken agreement’ that he will always wait for her if she’s off her lead, and she will always return back to the van.