After graduating from UC Berkeley in 2007, I hit the open road and headed to South America. I didn’t have a specific agenda or goal – just to travel abroad, see some interesting places and try not to get robbed. I didn’t realize until then that I wanted to live overseas, but by doing something that I found meaningful. I didn’t blog or write about it, and I don’t intend on writing about why you should go travel abroad or advocate doing anything more than sitting on your couch. I think you should do what you want to do in life, and try to make that work for you.
After the recession hit in 2008 I was at a crossroads. I had graduated school with the typical guidance a young American gets “Go to the best school possible, get the best job possible that makes the most money, and then get a huge untenable mortgage and live the American dream”. But what is that dream? How can you decide what you want to do if you haven’t had the experience yet to know what would make you fulfilled? From Hallmark, from University, from your parents who grew up in a different time with different expectations with different opportunities presented to them?
I had been on the road for over a year and had finally taken the plunge to solve these tough life questions by starting a youth hostel in Cali, Colombia, when I woke up to find Lehman Brothers and AIG go belly up. And as they went belly up, so did the economy, my little capital and my dream of living overseas. But like our forefathers before us, when times get tough, you can sit around and play spread around the blame, or you can man up and make shit happen. I try to live by the latter.
Where to begin though? How do I make money for travel and live overseas? Like most people, I looked to big brother Google for the answer. And all I got was a pile of vague websites built for SEO clicks, sites riddled with Adsense with no valuable information, or websites trying to sell me Cialis. Online job boards faired slightly better with the promise of shoveling sheep shit in Kazakhstan, volunteering to save the turtles for the “course fee” of $3623, or offering cheap Cialis. However, I didn’t want sell my kidneys to save a turtle, become an indentured slave who pays to make photocopies, or sit hunched over a computer screen in paradise praying I could make a buck before adult onset spinabifida kicks in. These options didn’t seem to help me with my two goals: How do I live overseas and what do I want to do in my life?
Desperate, I did what one has to do if they really want something: hustle. Ergo, the intent of this blog is 4-fold.
- To find my muse (gainful employment)
- To travel abroad & live overseas
- To fund these escapades by doing interesting travel jobs abroad and chronicling what happens when you give the road map the finger
- To show other people travel job opportunities abroad so that they too can give the road map the finger
Thanks for joining me on my path towards enlightenment, or possibly complete self-destruction.