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This is my first blog post in a while because I’ve been grinding away on new businesses for the last three months. I’m writing this from Australia where I’m living with my cousin and her family! I have two more weeks here before heading to Bangalore, India for a month. After India, I’ll be heading back to South Florida for the holidays before spending two months in South Lake Tahoe, CA. What initially started as a 3-6 month trip through Asia has evolved into a (likely) permanent lifestyle change. I love nomading. And I’m going to nomad for another two years and probably forever. I am officially hooked, and it’s hard to imagine going back to a “normal” lifestyle at this point.
This year has been wild, exciting and incredibly fulfilling. I’ve had the opportunity to meet lots of amazing people and immerse myself in a number of different Asian cultures (Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, South Korea, and Taiwan). The unpredictability and adventure that comes with nomading has certainly kept things interesting. The continually changing surroundings have led to a lot of memorable experiences.
Since realizing that you can live like a king in many parts of the world on $900-$1,500 per month, my viewpoint on money has changed dramatically. If my bare necessities are covered (a bed, a roof, A/C, and wifi) then everything else is gravy and has a relatively minimal impact on my happiness.
I’ve been loving life while living in certain conditions that I couldn’t have imagined before starting this trip. Life is what you make of it though and everything is a matter of perspective.
Some quick apartment highlights:
- I waged a month-long war against a colony of massive ants in my bedroom in Bali (and prevailed). As a bonus side effect, I spent a lot of time watching National Geographic ant wars on YouTube – fascinating stuff. Here’s a personal favorite (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W8vFFM_k1FI).
- While in Bali, I slept on a mattress that is the least comfortable mattress that I will ever sleep on and is best described as a cage with small pieces of cotton in between the wires
- I battled an endless amount of flies in the shower of my Chiang Mai, Thailand bathroom and it took me about six weeks to finally wipe them out
- I lived in a 7-foot x 8.5-foot studio apartment in Taipei, Taiwan (but it had a real mattress 😃 )
While I will try hard to avoid some of these again, they make for great stories, and I don’t have any regrets!
Here are some more exciting highlights from my trip so far:
- Lived five minutes from fantastic surfing in Bali
- Hiked a 14,000-foot volcano in Indonesia with some new lifelong friends
- Crashed my motorbike in the rain in Thailand and walked away with only a small road rash
- Accidentally scammed a tuk-tuk scammer in Bangkok
- Lived with a Vietnamese host family in Da Nang
- Sang on air at a radio station in South Korea – in Korean!
- Lived with close college buddies in both Seoul and Taipei
- Became a dumpling addict during my time in Taipei
- Lived with my cousin and her family in Brisbane!
This has been an extraordinary trip, and my life outlook has evolved significantly since I started traveling. I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on society, conformity and human nature. Will be writing more about these topics soon!
Business Update and My 2018 Plan:
From a business perspective, things have been going really well. I’m running a collection of eCommerce and lead generation businesses that are cruising along and have turned nomading into a sustainable lifestyle.
My original next step after reaching a satisfactory income stream was to shift my focus to impact-oriented businesses. That plan has evolved a bit because I’m learning so much that now doesn’t seem like a good time to stop. My evolved plan is to continue to learn and build businesses while funneling excess profits into impact investments. What exactly does that mean? It means that I’ll continue to nomad next year and as I continue to scale my businesses, I’ll start dabbling in early-stage impact angel investing (with tiny check sizes) mainly focused on climate change, education and health-related endeavors.
I’m not sure exactly where this will take me, but I know that I’m on a clearer path to achieving my life goals than ever before and that life is good :).
If You’re Interested In Traveling:
Traveling the world is much cheaper and easier than most people realize. You don’t need to be rich, you don’t need to know the local language (in most well-traveled areas and major cities), and you don’t need any fancy gear or clothing. You can fly round trip to Asia for $800 or less from the U.S. and then live on $1k per month or less when you get here (including local flights). Plus most of the cities I’ve lived in feel significantly safer than major U.S. cities. If you’ve ever wanted to wander, now is a good time to start!