There comes a time in a man’s life when he must let go of his worldly possessions and move on to new places, faces, and challenges. Thousands of years ago, this would probably mean leaving your bed of leaves and grass in your cave, then travelling on foot to a new location, and moving into a new cave. Perhaps you’d even have to kill another man for that cave. Maybe even a bear or a velociraptor. Nowadays, we put as much of our stuff into a suitcase, jump on a place, and move to the other side of the world.
With that said, my time has come, and seeing as I don’t know any good caves nearby, I’m packing up my life and moving around the world.
The plan is to spend 6 months checking out the United States, with a base in New York, and then head over to the United Kingdom to find a job to pay for my travels around Europe and the rest of the other side of the world.
I’ve been busy organising a 6 month tourist visa for the United States of grand old America, and a two year working visa for the jolly old United Kingdom. First up, starting on January 23rd, after an overnight flight from Auckland to Los Angeles via Tahiti, it’s 4 days in San Diego to check out the city, along with SeaWorld and the San Diego Zoo, and then onto Anaheim to check out Hollywood, LA, Disneyland and Universal Studios. From there, it’s a flight across to the East Coast to live in New York, and then the next 6 months will be decided later.
Now, moving to the other side of the world is less like a move than it is a transformation. Firstly, you have to quit your job, so I am now officially unemployed after three years of working at a respected New Zealand television and media company.
Next, you have to give up your home, and this is harder than it seems. As you’re not just putting everything into boxes and moving it into a new house, you have to divide all your stuff into three piles: stuff you are taking with you, stuff you are throwing out, and stuff you can convince people to look after for you. At first, it may seem easy to decide what to keep and what to throw out, but you quickly realise that it’s hard to throw things out just because you won’t be needing them for the next two years. For example, it’s hard to throw out old Christmas cards because of the sentimental value (these things either provide house clutter if you keep them, or guilt if you throw them out), and it’s hard to throw out odds and ends because you never know when you might need them to create a makeshift bomb defusing unit.
You also have to sell furniture (if you can) to empty out your abode. I had written previously about using honesty to try to sell my old washing machine online, and I have now successfully sold it for $10.50 using slightly less honesty. Another appliance I had to get rid of was my old refrigerator, which I managed to sell for $30. The hard part about selling a refrigerator without a replacement is consuming all its chilled contents, which makes for many unhealthy meals with excess condiment cocktails on the side.
Once you’ve sold your furniture and appliances, thrown out all your junk, and packed away your clothes, it’s time to focus on the little things, which really make the transformation a reality. I just cut up my Subway sandwiches rewards card. It only had $2.68 on it, but this is me taking very drastic action. Next up, it’ll be goodbye to my Foodtown rewards card, and any other loyalty stamp cards I won’t be needing anymore. I’ll never reach that free tenth sushi box.
And with that, my metamorphosis into the traveller is officially underway. As of tomorrow, I will be unemployed and homeless, as I move out of my apartment and move in with my girlfriend and her family for the next few weeks until it’s time to say goodbye to everything I know.