I’m not sure what “gallivanting around the globe” involves… But it sounds like something worth doing. Talking on the phone with my sister before I left the country last week, those were her words… “Gallivanting” is defined as, “to wander about, seek pleasure“. Which is partially true.
For whatever reason, the uncertain lifestyle and persona of a global adventurer has become somewhat of a necessity for me. Most of my past travel opportunities came about by doing service work in other countries. I’ve taught English to Tibetan refugees, dug trench along the Lao-Vietnamese boarder (to protect pipes that will provide clean water for small villages), and done journalistic work with ex-revolutionaries in eastern Kashmir. This round of travel involves spending the winter in Thailand with my French partner.
What started as an online fling between facebook pen-pals has officially sucked me out of my house and home and secured me the lifestyle of a vagabond for the next 9 to 12 months. “What? you get to go on a year long vacation????“, “Absolutely not, I’m working remotely from the tropics for the winter...”
“Packing all of my worldly possessions into two duffle bags, a day-pack and a satchel on the day of departure. (This includes everything I need to run my business for the next year)”
“How???” Over the last three years, I’ve cultivated a small business building and maintaining websites as well as taking photography and video jobs. At this point it’s allowed me to be flexible in terms of how much I work, and where I take jobs. I own my own tools and set up my office wherever I find myself. The plan for the winter is to work remotely for my clients back in the U.S., as well as take some on the ground photography jobs here in Thailand (and blogging for you all of course).
Why Thailand? There are a few reasons… The first of which is that it’s an international hub of self proclaimed “Digital Nomads“, or simply put, young tech-savvy people like myself who are pursuing lifestyles with low overhead, that allow them to live cheap and work remotely. With a passport and a computer, individuals can now pursue a plethora of work online, and play the international currency exchange for happy mediums in terms of “quality of life“, and “cost of living“. The goal of this endeavor is to spend time with my French lover, travel around the world, all while building my income and paying off some of the debts I accrued starting my business in the U.S.
Pursuing “location-independent” work is a simple yet profound concept, that is now available to those adventurous souls itching for something entirely different than a 9-5 lifestyle. If you are interested in learning about the “Digital Nomad” hotspots around the globe check out the Nomad List. Or if you’d like to see some more information about Chiang Mai, Thailand and why it rocks, check out Lonely Planet – Chiang Mai.
I plan on sharing more stories and insights from Asia over the next few months. Now that you know why I gave up my sweet apartment in Durango, Colorado and life in the U.S. for a while, I’ll leave you with a few photographs from the Night Market that takes place every Sunday evening in the Old City of Chiang Mai. Stay posted because there are more stories and photographs to come on this series titled: “Trail Magic”.