updated in December 2015
Do not worry, I will not subject you to misery and boredom of reading all details of our life story, but just enough to know who we are.
We are Andrei and Elena. We met at the university where we both studied Computer Science: Andrei because of his geeky nature, me – because, back then, I believed that it is easier to deal with computers than humans. Naturally, now I know from first hand experience that they both can be assholes. Back to our story. So, we met, fell in love, got married, graduated from the university, had a kid when we were pretty young… So far, it was an ordinary story. Then, on one faithful day, we made a life-changing decision and moved to the Unites States. Leaping through half of the world with just one bag and a small kid in tow perhaps looked crazy to some people, but we did not mind: it was a brand new chapter in our lives.
So we settled in: learned the language and customs, got jobs, bought a car, then another one, bought a house… Unbeknownst to us, we were living the American dream. Years flew by pretty quickly… One day, while doing some household choirs, I was struck with a thought of how predictable our lives became. I knew what exactly we both will be doing on any given hour of a day in 10, 20 or 30 years from that day. It was… both, boring and frightening. There was no room left for imagination, surprise, unexpected… Tellingly, we came to the same realization almost in unison. Long story short, we sold the house and cars, left steady and comfortable 9-to-5 jobs in favor of freelance consulting and ventured on our next adventure: travel places we like. Thus, we became digital nomads.
Our first destination: Northwest US. We rented a car and traveled across the United States from Washington DC to Seattle. Our immediate goal was to establish a base in Seattle and explore the West Coast. What we did not take into consideration is how vast, different and rich in history the West Coast is. Originally, we planned to spend about half a year in Seattle with a couple “side trips” to Europe and Hawaii. Six months morphed into a year full of adventures and discoveries. By the time of departure to our next destination, Chiang Mai in Thailand, I was almost in tears. Ok, to be honest, I was mightily scared of abandoning comfortably established life and diving into unknown.
Thailand came and went. Six months there taught me more about humility, been able to adapt and enjoy whatever happens, human rights and history than a decade spent caught up in career rat race.
The important lesson we learned from Thailand adventure: 6 months in one place was about 3 months too long. By the end of our stay there, I was again getting into the routine of settled life, aka exactly what we wanted to avoid when we started to travel.
Hence, we adjusted our modus operandi: 3 months in one place with a couple of short vacations (usually, long weekends) is what we are aiming for for each leg of our journey. It works perfectly because 90 days is what the US passport allows in most countries without a visa. Anything shorter than that and you end up spending too much time moving from place to place which is less fun that one might imagine.
Up until now, we visited:
- Thailand with short trips to Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur
- Andalucia, Spain with short trips to Algarve, Portugal and Montenegro
- Montevideo, Uruguay
- Costa Rica