If you’re new to following my blog (thank you for supporting my journey, I do truly appreciate each of my followers -and please feel free to tell a friend, I try to keep my topics relevant and authentic to me as a person and life), then you likely know that I am …. wait for it …. an empty nester (gasp!)
Yes, at the ripe old age of 42, I was an empty nester – my youngest spread her wings and flew the coup in the Fall of 2016 when she decided to go to Ryerson University in Toronto (at the time we were living in Manitoba). And my oldest flew off to Ottawa for school in 2012. So, for the last year and a half, I have been trying to “do me” … I’ve been trying to do the things I like and love to do, take up new hobbies and interests. I’ve been catching up with old friends and making new ones, trying to travel more and have been thinking about what I want my future to look like.
Which was an interesting question, what did I want my future to look like? When did I want to retire? Where? Is it a reality?
“Don’t live the same day over and over again and call that a life. Life is about evolving mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.”
― Germany Kent
I’ve been working since the age of 13. First as a Waitress in catering (I even served alcohol to the armouries – I don’t even think that was legal lol), then at a pizza shop where the Manager saw fit to leave the new kid in charge by herself on her 4th day – I was 15. I worked as a Cashier at Canadian Tire through my high school years. I went to College, and started working full-time by the time I was 20 at variety of law firms, the government, and insurance companies.
This brings me to June 2018 … I want to retire or at least semi-retire and I want to travel. Enter, South East Asia. Many of you are likely wondering why SEAsia and others of you are likely aware of the absolute wonders of living there.
I have spent months (probably about 6-7 months) researching living and working as an ex pat there. Reading every article, statistic, blog and watching many YouTube channels from those who are also living as ex pats in places like Vietnam, Cambodia, Bali and Thailand. Not only are these episodes entertaining, but, they give you a real life peek into their everyday lives insofar as living in those places – the benefits of course and some of the struggles of being a foreigner.
FAQs as I have been slowly sharing this dream with ppl:
Which Countries comprise SEAsia?
Maritime SEAsia includes: Indonesia, East Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, East Timor, Brunei, Christmas Island, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands of India, and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands. Taiwan is also included by many anthropologists.
What will you do your first year?
The first year I would like to do nothing but TRAVEL – I’m so excited to explore this part of the world, the culture, the people, but most of all the FOOD – I’m a huuuuge foodie …. authentic Thai, Vietnamese and Malaysian cuisine got me like “let’s go”. I’d definitely have no problem filling my first 12 months up with things to do and places to go … that is for sure not the problem – the problem would be knowing that I would have to stop the full-time traveling and put down a root or two so I can work. My own kind of Eat, Pray, Love kinda deal …
What would you do for work?
I’ve done tons of research, and to be honest, I’m not too concerned about finding employment once I’m over there – most countries are in search of native English speaking individuals to work at schools, businesses, online work and in the hotel industry – the best part is that I wouldn’t have to work full-time, so there’s still time to explore.
Where would you lay roots?
If I had a choice, I’d settle a root or two in Vietnam – likely starting off in Ho Chi Minh (Saigon) but ideally ending up in Da Nang. Da Nang especially appeals to me because it marks the halfway point between the capital city in the north, Hanoi, and Ho Chi Minh in the south. It’s the fourth largest city in Vietnam with about a million ppl. Bordering the city are long ranges of mountains to the west and the East Sea to the East. It’s also well known for its beautiful beaches. Plus, it has an international airport, so that’s excellent for flights back to Canada or travel to other countries.
How often would you come home?
Right now I’m thinking I would come back to Canada during the summer months (obviously while it’s hot here and to avoid rainy season there – which runs roughly between June and October), to spend time with family and friends. See my rugrats and maybe do a bit of exploring around Canada with them.
Won’t you miss your family and friends?
What kind of question is that? Yes, of course I will, madly. But with the advent of FaceTime and Skype I’ll probably talk to them more there than I do here lol.
Plus, many ppl do this everyday – move away from “home”, whether it’s to America, the other side of the country, France, Egypt, Japan, moving your consulting business to Mexico (yes, these are all ppl I know who’ve done it) so, if they can do it why can’t I move to SEAsia? It’s a fact of life, it changes.
I’m hoping to rent a two bedroom apt, so I can host family and friends who’d like to visit.
When is this happening?
I’d like to leave tmrw, but, reality dictates in about 3 years – which is longer than I’d like – but you know …. cash is King and I gotta keep saving,
Why are you doing this?
At the end of the day, you can’t deny yourself your best life or your dreams for fear of upsetting other ppl. This is YOUR LIFE. YOURS and nobody else’s. Don’t let other ppl tell you you can’t do it or it’s not a good idea – because they’re afraid to fly. No one is holding you back. You are the only one that is responsible for what you can and cannot do.
People think those who achieve their dreams are special people who have a certain formula. Truth is when you pursue your dreams, sometimes formulas work. Sometimes they don’t. That’s how new formulas are created. That’s how you improve. Create your own formula to achieve your dreams.
IF you’re thinking of doing something like this, just remember, NOTHING is permanent, you can always come back home. But in the meantime … fly 🙂
Anyone out there right now living abroad and have some insight to share?