We’re Not Having Any Fun
Perhaps you’re like we were. Your life is pretty good. You’re in a good relationship. Your children are grown and doing well. You live in a safe and pleasant neighborhood. You have friends and family you enjoy spending time with. You have a job that is challenging and rewarding without being too demanding. You pay your bills on time and even save some money. But you’re not having any fun.
After you put in your hours at work, tend to the household chores, and get some rest, there’s no time or energy for much else.
This is the situation in which we found ourselves in 2015. Even though life was good, we knew there had to be something more. Steve and I found ourselves saying, “we aren’t having any fun” quite often.
We decided to do something about it.
Creating Our Vision
We discussed ways to lighten our workload, like hiring a lawn service and a pool service. We scheduled outing days. We considered downsizing now that our children were grown.
Then we thought about what we want out of our last few decades on earth. This was the result of our soul-searching:
Our Vision Statement: Live of life of adventure, enrichment, and discovery.
Our Mission Statement: Create a lifestyle of simplicity with ample time and resources devoted to achieving our vision.
The Sentence That Changed Everything
In the fall of 2015, Steve and I decided to look at apartments in our city of Jacksonville, Florida. We wanted to be able to walk to stores and restaurants and not have to worry about home maintenance.
While driving home after a day of apartment hunting, we discussed how none of these places felt like our future home. How we weren’t “feeling it.” Then I blurted out the words that would change our lives: “We should just sell everything and travel the world.” Steve said, “I’ll do it.”
An Obsession Is Born
It sounded like a pipe dream, but the idea wouldn’t leave my mind, so I Googled “travel blogs.” Imagine my surprise when I saw a result for the top 50 travel blogs. Not 50 travel blogs total, but the top 50!
I found out that there are a lot of people traveling full-time. Some of them share details of their costs. I discovered that a couple could travel the world on around $3,000 per month (excluding medical insurance). That day I became obsessed.
For weeks I dreamt about what it would be like to travel the world. I started planning in my head. When would we do this? What would we do with our house and cars? How much time would we spend in one place? And how much time would we spend out of the US?
Could we say goodbye to our home of 30 years?
And my little red Fiat, Dot?
After weeks of obsessing, I told Steve what I wanted to do. I was sure he would say I’m crazy, but to my surprise and appreciation, he said: “Let’s do it.”
Where Did That Come From?
You may be wondering what made me blurt out those life-changing words. The simple answer is, I’m not sure. Maybe it was the memory of a book I read many years earlier titled One Year Off by David Elliot Cohen. In his book, Cohen describes in delightful detail the year he, his wife, and their three young children (ages 2, 7, and 9) traveled the world. Or maybe I was ready for a big change in my life. Whatever the reason, the seed was planted.
Setting the Plan in Motion
We set February 1, 2018, as the target date to leave the U.S. We spent 2016 and 2017 learning about world travel and getting rid of most of our possessions. Steve retired from his job as a sales manager in January 2017 and spent the year getting the house we had lived in for 30 years ready for sale. I retired from my job as an accountant at the end of 2017 and joined Steve in working on the house.
We decided to go from Florida to Europe by sea, so we booked a 15-day cruise to Barcelona. The cruise didn’t leave the U.S. until early April. This turned out to be a blessing in disguise because we spent all of February and March finishing the house preparations.
On April 7, 2018, we gave extra-long hugs to our daughters, Stephanie and Laura, and set sail towards our new life on the Norwegian Epic.
Steve and me with our daughters, Stephanie and Laura, the day before we set sail.
We look forward to sharing our experiences with you.
Come wander the world with us,