Welcome to Forever A Wanderer! My name is Becky and I am a nomad by choice. What does that mean? It means that I don’t call any one place ‘home’ nor do I desire a permanent residence. Instead, I set up temporary home-bases around the globe from California to Vermont to Baja to England. I housesit, I stay with friends, I visit family, I camp, I backpack, I road trip… I’m free to go where I want, when I want to and I can’t imagine it any other way.
How do I know?
Well, I lived in a big city for four long years. I rented an apartment, I collected things, I dated seriously and I worked a 9-5 job. Believe it or not, this was after giving up a 7-year career of nomadism that began straight out of college when I bought a one-way ticket to Hawaii instead of entering the corporate washing machine. Ultimately, though, I ended up incredibly unhappy in the city after 4 years. I missed the excitement of exploring new places on a regular basis, I missed the simplicity of minimal living, I missed the adventures of the road – both good and bad, and most of all, I missed the people I met along the way. So I left and returned to nomad life.
You probably have a few questions about how this works for me, so let’s break it down:
I don’t have a trust fund nor did I slave away at a high-paying job for 10 years in order to live off of savings. My primary source of income is working as a wellness specialist (think massage therapist/outdoor guide) on a fleet of small National Geographic cruise ships. I first started working on the ships in 2008 (after the one-way ticket to Hawaii) and continued all the way up until 2012 when I made that ill-fated move to the city. Now I’m back on board and I spend a good portion of the year in Alaska (summer), the Pacific Northwest (fall), and Costa Rica, Panama, and Baja (winter). In between contracts on the ship I go where I please.
Travel! As I mentioned above, I employ all sorts of resources in order to explore the world. When I’m not working on the ships, I like to:
– housesit for extended periods of time so that I can really get to know a place
– plan and execute outdoor adventure trips like backpacking and camping
– road trip, preferably with my mountain bike
– visit friends and family or have them visit me
– get lost in foreign cities
I’ve thought a great deal about this question and the best answer I’ve been able to come up with is: because I can’t not travel. Staying in one place for too long leaves me feeling restless, anxious, and trapped. I crave change and I crave movement. I love to explore, to meet new people, to push my boundaries and get out of my comfort zone. The thought of buying a house terrifies me.
365 days of the year. About half to two-thirds of that time is spent on the ships and the rest is spent wandering the world.
Anywhere! The novel thing about being a nomad is that I can virtually go anywhere in the world based on interests, budget, or time availability. I’ve spend quite a bit of time in Southeast Asia (it’s cheap) and Central America (due to time-constraints between ship contracts) but I’d like to be a bit more intentional in the future about choosing places based on interests rather than convenience. For example, learning Spanish in Mexico and mountain biking in Moab.
So how does all this sound to you? Too good to be true? In many ways it is – a life of open roads, wild adventures, and few belongings. But like any chosen path, Nomadism has its definite pros and cons. Learning how to cook traditional Laotian food in Luang Prabang is fabulous; a 50-hour travel marathon from Bali to Panama is not.
My hope with this blog is to share some of those pros and cons and inspire others out there – particularly women – to build a nomadic life that she craves. It is possible!
Thanks for stopping by 🙂