Every time I moved to a different place I always had mixed feelings: on the one hand it felt like home 2 seconds after landing, on the other hand, I always knew that I was going to leave soon, and leave I did, with a cold heart and great memories in my suitcase.
It happened in Mexico as well, although it took me 3 years to realize I wasn’t going anywhere and that I could have bought a car for my sanity (using a taxi every day is not fun).
I loved this country so deeply (and still do), and found myself having so much fun in my job that I was almost sure that this was THE place, the promised land, where I was supposed to settle. Settle…What a word! But really, everything was so perfect: my job, my co-workers, my boss; and after work it was even better. My friends, the beach, the surroundings, the houses where I lived (I moved 3 times you know, intent on not losing the habit of changing). NOT a single thing was wrong here, and yet, every now and then, I felt the urge to think about where the next move would be to.
When friends or family hinted at coming to see me, the first thing that came out of my mouth was, “You had better hurry up, because I don’t know when I am outta here!”
Do I really want to spend the rest of my life in only one place, regardless of how beautiful it was? Would I have time to see the world if I were to go on vacation once a year, every year?
And then another work trip would come up, and off I would go to Barbados again, then Curacao, the Bahamas, Jamaica, you name it: beautiful places, amazing hotels, great business partners (some of whom eventually also became friends). And once more my mind was deceived. I was going nowhere. Look at where I ‘’have to’’ go to work. Am I sure I want to leave everything behind to go and live like a gipsy, in a situation of financial insecurity?
I am a luxury hotels freak, well, who wouldn’t be? I know how to audit a luxury property, what clients can expect from high-end service; I am a very demanding guest myself, and highly appreciative of great service and comfort, and being very spoiled. How could I ever survive with that big, important feature missing from my life?
Plus, during my inner brainstorming, I surprisingly realised that a part of me loves working in corporate jobs and contributing to the growth of the company, with a team where I share the same philosophy and values. It gives me a sense of pride and self-confidence. But then again, this is my comfort zone.
Once again, that monster within rose up strongly and loudly, “it’s time to go and check out something new. You’ve been here long enough, given your all and taken it all in. Get out of that golden cage that you have built around yourself and see what else is there. Don’t set your limits around your comfort zone!”
I believe, paradoxically, that it was precisely the feeling of security and comfort that had been pushing me away from that same “at ease” situation.
What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anythingVincent Van Gogh
I am not saying that everybody needs to leave everything behind and take off. Everyone needs to find his/her own path.
I always had this curiosity to know what’s behind my own world, starting from the comfort of my family. But most of all I wanted to discover my own self in different environments, and that’s the path I chose for myself.
What’s yours? Do you ever ask yourself if you are exactly where you want to be? After all, that’s the point: if you are happy, stay, if not, move!
When I decided to leave Italy, 15 years ago, I had financial security, as I left with a job as a tour rep that took me all over the places; and adding to the fun of that was that I never got to choose where! I was told a couple of weeks before the assignment started where I was going to be the following month. It was exciting and I was always lucky to be offered amazing places; well any new place would have been awesome for me, providing me with a new world to discover. What I loved about that job as a tour rep was the responsibility I had towards my guests. I mean, I wasn’t saving lives, that’s for sure, but it was challenging for me and highly rewarding.
This is how it worked: I got to a new place… let’s say, Seychelles, I then had 1 week to learn about the places of interest, culture, people, transportation, tours and to make friends, real ones and ones who would be able to assist me in a challenging situation. I needed to get the hang of the whole thing in the blink of an eye so that when the guests arrived, I would know how to move around and make sure everything was perfect for them. It was an easy way to travel around and get to know a place and a culture very well. It was the life I had always wanted, every 6 months or year I changed places and started all over again: new place, new friends, new people.
I knew from when I was a kid that I was never going to get married and have a family, that I would never be able to stick to one plan forever, I needed change in my life. Constant change and continuous learning have been my biggest motivation. A reckless soul and untamed heart, but unable to shake FEAR!
It is the monster that grows with my age, my worst enemy which has made me drive my car with the handbrake on. I have been reading and studying about fear. The most influential motivators tell us to embrace it, and not to let it overcome our desires and dreams. That’s all very good, but how…? I haven’t found an answer as yet, but I need to put it aside for now and move forward, hand-in-hand with my fears.
I now talk to it and ask it to be quiet for a while because I need to leave again; this time with no safety net, besides my own self, dreams, and savings.
I have a plan, but I am also open to whatever comes my way, and I will “let my life sing its song” (quote). I don’t have the light-heartedness of a 20-year-old, but I do have the experience of a 40-year-old, and see no other option for me right now, other than to move forward, keep on learning and changing.
I have been asked many questions by friends who don’t understand my choice. One of them was: “After this vacation what will you do?”
After trying to understand the question, I just laugh…
Fast forward 4 years I am still on the road, with lots of bumps and turns, but I am still leaving the life that I want. After lots of frustrations and tears, I keep pushing and working hard on my blog, knowing deep in my heart that it would have been my passport for the digital nomad life where I could work from anywhere and be my own boss with a solid income and the freedom to decide what to make of my own time. Well, I can say now that my determination is paying off and I am living THE LIFE!
Don’t think I am working from a beach in my swimsuit, as many pictures may make you believe. Nothing like that. I am working my ass off while housesitting and saving while building my now 2 sites. The life of a digital nomad has its pros and cons but it’s the life that I want and I wouldn’t change it for the world.
That’s why I have also started a section of this blog about the Nomadic Lifestyle that aims to help people who want to start a new life on the road with free tips and food for thoughts, inspirational stories to show you that anybody can do it. And if you set your mind and your heart to it you can do it too.
- Store your bags in the main cities and walk around freely hands and weight free with Bounce
- Check if you need a visa and get help processing it with iVisa
- Never ever leave without
travel insurance. Get complete coverage from World Nomads or long term insurance from Safety Wing
- I find all of my flights on Skyscanner, Kiwi.com, Google flights, Scott’s Cheap Flights, and always remember to compare
- Book your daily tours locally to support local businesses, or if you don’t find any reliable company, or you prefer to book in advance, check out GetYourGuide or Viator. Some of their tours are refundable up to 24h in advance.
- I rent my long and mid-term apartments on VRBO
- Book hotels with Booking.com or Hotels.com
- Compare car rental prices at Discover Car Rentals
- Check out my travel planning guide if you are planning your trip and feeling overwhelmed