Becoming Vagabonds

Vagabonding is not a lifestyle, nor is it a trend. It’s just an uncommon way of looking at life — a value adjustment from which action naturally follows. And, as much as anything, vagabonding is about time — our only real commodity — and how we choose to use it.
 Rolf Potts – Vagabonding

Hello world!  The time has come for Ashley and me to quit our jobs in San Francisco, get rid of (most of) our stuff and travel the world for nearly 7 months.

Anyone who’s known us over the last five years has heard us talk about making this adventure happen, but from inception to action, there’s a long road to walk. In this post, I’ll walk you through who we are, what our plan is and why we’re leaving the comfort of our current lives for the unknown.

First of all, a bit about who we are:

Ashley: 29 years old female from Atlanta, USA. Singer & marketing consultant for tech startups. Previously ran marketing for Sauce Labs (where we met) and was an early instrumental employee in the company. She is an adventurer who blends pragmatism with a spirited, see-what-happens-next approach to life.

Santi: 31 years old male from Rosario, Argentina. I’m a software engineering professional who has been working for over 10 years in the industry. I spent the last 7 years at Sauce Labs, a fun, and successful startup. I was very lucky to join Sauce as the first employee and the company has let me grow my career immensely through a fair share of hard work.

We lived in Russian Hill, a hilly neighborhood in San Francisco, in a bright and quiet 1 bedroom apartment that we loved so much. We hosted at least 1 visitor per month at our place, between family, friends, and friends-of-friends who came to visit us or our city.

We have a lot of local friends that we love to hang out with and do fun activities with, like sailing in the bay, indoor and outdoor rock climbing, CrossFit, and plenty of dinners and drinks.

So why are we leaving this great life behind and risking not being able to pick it back up 6 months from now?

We believe that real change and being outside of your comfort zone are fundamental components of personal growth.

We see money and material assets as tools to live life, experience new things, collect memories and help others.

We know life is a marathon, not a sprint. To achieve the most in the long run, you need to play the long game.

We’ve learned that life is short and it ends out of our control. Of course, we hope to live a long healthy life, but we strive to be ready to part ways happily if that were to happen tomorrow.

We have been working hard over the last decade, which we view as a time investment. Now we are collecting the fruits of that and paying ourselves back with fun and pleasure so we can get back to it in a few months.

But enough philosophy for now. Now let’s chat about the plan!

We quit our jobs and paused all professional activities. Gave most of our stuff away to friends and family. Terminated our apartment rental, bought some backpacks and plane tickets and left San Francisco! The idea is to plan visits to specific countries, spend at least 2 weeks per destination and leave as much room as possible for serendipity.

Here’s what our current itinerary looks like:

  • Sept 22: Bye bye, SF!
  • Sept 23 – Breckenridge and Boulder, CO: Christine and Danny’s wedding and Ido Portal‘s Movement X workshop
  • Oct 3 – East Coast USA: Visiting Ashley’s family
  • Oct 12 – Argentina: Catching up with my family and friends. Taking Ashley to other spots in my country than my birthplace.
  • Dec 1 – New Zealand: Hiking, WWOOFing, bungee-jumping!
  • Jan 1 – Australia: Surfing and scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef
  • Jan 15 – Bali: Beach, hiking, scuba, who knows
  • Feb 1 – Thailand / Cambodia
  • Feb 15 – Vietnam / Laos
  • Mar 1 – Myanmar
  • Mar 15 – Israel
  • Apr 1 – Brief Europe visit: Visiting some friends along the way while we head back west
  • Apr 15th – Back in SF ready to rock and roll at our new gigs

So that’s the current plan. We only have plane tickets up until New Zealand so far and are completely open for it to change along the way. We expect recommendations, lucky finds, new friends and accidents to change things as we go and have no doubt each of them will make for amazing memories and stories.

img_20160922_072337
Ashley and I, leaving San Francisco at 7 a.m. after a long night of packing

3 thoughts on “Becoming Vagabonds

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