Kim’s note: This is the fourth in a series of guest posts from fellow travel bloggers about the moment they decided to trade in their conventional life for long-term travel. The topic, specifically: describe the moment that you decided to change course. Today’s post comes from the awesome Erica of Over Yonderlust.
From Vacation to One Giant Trip
Shaun and I have always loved to travel. When we were both working in the video game industry, we would save every moment of vacation throughout the year and spend it on a 2-3 week hurrah abroad. What I didn’t realize was the cost of the work we were involved in and the toll it was taking on our lives.
A quick note to anyone thinking about working in the video game industry: It isn’t all glitz, glamour, and nerdy awesomeness (some of it is).
For two years straight Shaun and I worked mandatory 50 hour weeks at work due to the workload that was present at the time. We were also competitive gamers that were putting in an additional 25-30 hours a week playing World of Warcraft. This not only presented us with more involved knowledge of the game to help out at work, but also came with bragging rights in the gaming world.
So, to sum it up, we were in front of the computer for 11-12 hours a day, every day.
I was at my heaviest and everything started to spiral a bit.
Luckily, Anthony Bourdain saved us.
We were on weekend when we decided we needed to catch up on No Reservations that we had recorded on the DVR. Anthony Bourdain’s Ecuador episode was queued and it immediately caught my attention.
I wanted to go to Ecuador.
So I mentioned it to Shaun and he agreed that it would be an awesome place to visit – maybe when we were on our way to Peru?
Then it dawned on us. There were so many places we wanted to visit in Central/South America. Why didn’t we just make it one giant trip?
It seemed a little crazy… but it seemed so right.
Yes, we had really good jobs and were making enough money to live comfortably but something was missing. We have never been attached to our personal belongings and have always done things the “Shaun and Erica” way. I don’t think anything we do surprises our parents anymore.
And just like that I quit World of Warcraft cold turkey and focused my attention on getting all of our planning ready for leaving in the beginning of 2011. After being free of video game addiction, I realize how much more there is to life and I honestly can’t imagine ever going back to being that way.
We are currently 4 weeks into our trip and there is no looking back.
I feel so incredibly blessed to have had that moment of realization. All we can do now is look to the future, live with no regrets, and make the best of our travels.