Being an introvert, I understand those who move to remote places. Here, I find rare instances to be totally alone. All my past jobs required me to be surrounded by people, some I liked, okay, but some were a challenge. Social situations, school, and even at home, also proved to be pretty difficult. So imagine leaving it all behind you and moving to some faraway place where you rarely see other human beings. To me, that sounds amazing.
The perfect getaway
Guess what? That’s just what this one couple did. Taylor Stevens, 31 and Jesse Siebler, 32, obviously introverts, found a way to live a peaceful life free of many modern-day distractions.
In an advertisement, there was a need for a pair of people to watch over a lighthouse on Maatsuyker Island, located in Australia on the most southern mass of land, or the continental shelf. Out of all the 1000 other people trying to get away from society, or just trying to be a big help, the couple won the prize – a place to get away from the hustle and bustle of life.
But it wasn’t a permanent change in the scenery. It was only to be a 6-month stint where the couple would watch over the maintenance of the lighthouse, and then return home. But there was always much to be done, and not much time to think about leaving one day. They cleaned, observed the weather, watched for whales, and even did a bit of electrical work to keep the lighthouse running effectively.
A fresh coat of paint was also needed, and if you think of the size of the lighthouse, that’s a huge job all in itself. The couple reported to their duties at 6 and 9 a.m. every morning. Let’s just say, to get up that early, they must have loved it.
The harsh weather
It wasn’t all flowers and sunshine, however, the crashing waves kept them on their feet, or sometimes flat of their back when a storm crashed against the walls of the lighthouse. For 250 days of the year, the days were filled with rain, bestial winds, and the lack of sunshine. You’d wonder how they made it. But together, with emotional support for each other, they “weathered the storm”.
“The remoteness and the harshness of the place is certainly one of its most thrilling qualities…just being there is a miracle,”
The beauty was inspiring
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Although the main role for the couple was to make sure mother nature didn’t engulf the lighthouse and surrounding buildings, they found other aspects that inspired them as well. One of the most interesting and beautiful qualities were the many birds, more than a million of white-tailed shearwaters which were constantly making thrilling noises.
“It’s the loudest most awkward cooing, crying shrieking sounds you’ve ever heard in your life, right outside your window, all hours of the night. And somehow, you can’t help but love it”
It sounds like a happy ending right there, doesn’t it? Well, after the 6 months was over, the couple realized they were to return to city life. They were crushed because they had grown to love everything about living in the remote area. Although there were only a few sunny days, the ones they got made the view from the lighthouse captivating. But it was over…until.
The couple was contacted by another couple living on Three Hummock Island in Tasmania. The couple had been there for 9 years running a state reserve, but they were ready for a change. This meant someone else had to take their place. Taylor and Jesse were thrilled to take over the position to operate an island state reserve.
So, in fact, this story does have a happy ending. With that being said, I hope all of us introverts have the opportunity to find our place like this couple and find a way to be happy in this ever-growing and ever-changing world.
What about you? Would you leave it all behind to become a lighthouse keeper, like Taylor and Jesse did? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Featured image: Wikimedia Commons/Instagram @thelighthousekeepers
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This Post Has 2 Comments
Hi Sherrie, great piece! I think everyone want some level of respite from the pressures of our crowded cities and even the more rural country sides… I know I do prefer the peace and silent solitude of Nature and all it’s Glories… I do have a thought though… Are people who consider themselves ‘Introverts’ perhaps somewhat on the Spectrum??
We are all on the spectrum. We are just in different places. Then there are different mental disabilities that go with that place on the spectrum. While I don’t like seeing introverts and extroverts on any spectrum, we are at opposites ends of having too much or too little narcissistic ways. But then again, some people have a mixture of behaviors according to their environment, genetics, and so on…