Friday, April 17, 2009

My Trip Is a Success - Sunday 4-12-2009

The guests at Casa Brian are down to Catherine (who is never around) Leonie, and me. Juan left for Nicaragua today. Leonie is leaving for Nicaragua tomorrow. I’m thinking about leaving for someplace else, too, but no other place is calling me right now.

I wanted to accomplish a few things when I booked this trip.

1) Figure out what to do with my life. This has been a success. I can’t yet put a job title to what I want, but I know what lifestyle I want. I absolutely want the freedom to travel at least several months every year. Therefore, I need to find a job that requires travel to strange and exotic places (travel writer?), or I need a job that will allow me the freedom to travel several months per year (contract financial analyst?), or I need a job that I can do anywhere in the world (A company I can run remotely? contract business valuation? massage therapist?).

2) Meet cool people. This has been a complete success. Here’s a quick recount of the memorable folks I’ve met in Costa Rica: Ricardo and Fernando from Portugal and with whom I hiked and barhopped for two days in Monteverde, Rose and Ann who I met in Monteverde and who impressed me with their work in helping the most helpless in this country, the Wisconsin Girls who I met in Monteverde and with whom I had an amazing conversation about religion over dinner, Laura from Wisconsin who I spent an afternoon taking around San Jose while she told me about working for the Peace Corps in Honduras, Nicolas and his dad who I met in Playa Tamarindo and who told some of the most entertaining stories I’ve ever heard, everyone at Casa Brian, especially Leonie, Juan, and Brian Pearson himself.

3) Have varied and memorable experiences. This has been a complete success. Here’s just a bit of what I have done: Hiking through Monteverde’s rainforests by night and by day, road tripping down the Nicoya peninsula, exploring new towns in a foreign country, talking with other travelers around a bonfire at Playa Samara under a nearly full moon, swimming in the bathwater warm Pacific ocean, falling asleep in a hammock to the sound of crashing waves, jumping from rock to rock at tide pools, playing tour guide through San Jose for an afternoon for someone I had just met, enjoying lengthy conversations with Brian at Casa Brian about social control, meeting people I would never cross paths with in my life back home and collecting their stories.

4) Ascertain Costa Rica’s suitability for relocation. Complete success. I am certain that I could live here temporarily or use Costa Rica as a base for further exploration through Central America. I am unsure of whether I could permanently live here. Brian tells me that land is cheap and arable in the country’s interior, which is good to know.

5) Achieve a clear idea of my personal priorities. Success. Here they are: personal freedom, extensive travel, debt-free living, minimal materialism, low stress, and high satisfaction with my life. Never again will I stay at a job that violates my personal values just because it pays well.

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