Not every grounded nomad has been willing or able to stay put, sign a longer-term lease somewhere, or otherwise take a break from their nomadic lifestyle to wait out the pandemic. Eager to get back to their low-cost lifestyle as housesitters, Eden and her husband were able to take on a last-minute sit in Hawaii after their extended sit in Egypt this summer was canceled. In this episode we talk about how six months of travel plans unraveled due to the pandemic, why and how they got back to housesitting, their experience with the mandatory 14-day quarantine on arrival in Hawaii, and lots more.
After retiring early, Laura and her husband decided to leave the US and find a country where they would feel welcome to be themselves as a mixed-race couple (which hadn’t always been their experience back home). They’re now enjoying life in Mexico and Laura joined me to share her experience at home and abroad, how and why she’s speaking up about racial injustice, and lots more.
Naomi is a full-time housesitter who has made some big shifts in her lifestyle as a result of the pandemic. (Spoiler alert: she's decided to settle down in Sydney, Australia, for the next year!) We talked about how she made that decision and weighed its financial impact, mourning the loss of her identity as a nomad and feeling excited about new possibilities, her goals and plans during this time, and lots more.
Catch up with the founder of Nomadtopia! How has becoming a mom of twins and living through the pandemic shifted my perspective on my own Nomadtopia—and lots more? Find out in this episode with the fabulous Jill Sessa returning to interview me once again.
Sam and her partner are full-time housesitters who had to scramble to find a place to stay when their next sit was canceled due to the pandemic. We cover a lot of ground in this episode including where they ended up, the importance of backup plans, the future of housesitting (in general and for them personally), and how new/aspiring housesitters can take advantage of the current situation to get housesitting experience. There’s a lot that’s relevant to all of us, so give it a listen even if you’re not interested in housesitting!
Sam and I started out talking about how his Nomadtopia was affected by the pandemic… and quickly found ourselves fumbling through a conversation about black lives matter, freedom, white privilege, the privilege of the nomadic lifestyle, and so much more.
Sarah has been living in a rural lakeside town in Guatemala, writing for the local paper and teaching yoga. When all her in-person work dried up overnight, she had to think quickly and learn how to bring her business online. In this episode we talk about what she's discovered in the process, the unexpected benefits of doing something she'd been resisting and of the pandemic in general, and lots more.
Norm and his girlfriend were back in the U.S. for a visit and as the pandemic escalated they made the quick decision to leave the country again. Norm shares how he's keeping himself busy and, for the first time on Grounded Nomads, we spend much of the episode talking about the future of travel—practically and emotionally, for ourselves and in general.
Seven years in Shanghai came to an abrupt end when Shannon and her husband left for a few weeks of travel in February—and couldn't return. Tune in to find out where they ended up, what it was like to pack up their apartment via video chat, the pros and cons of their current situation, and lots more.
Gustav was in Bali in March when a news report caused him to quickly decide to leave the country that same day. Now home in Sweden, he joined me to talk about having to choose one place to be, mindfulness in daily life and during lockdown, the unexpected upsides, and lots more.
A born-again nomad after a fire forced her out of her apartment in December, Erica cut her time in Mexico short to head back to Canada in mid-March. In this episode we talk about finding places to stay during a pandemic, why she feels like she may not be cut out to be a nomad, and lots more.
Their travels on hold and their bus parked in the driveway, Brittany and her family are staying in a rental house in Canada. Listen in as we talk about why she’s loving sedentary house-life, the transition to motherhood, exploring what’s next, and lots more.
A short trip to Mexico has turned into an indefinite one for Beck, who’s originally from New Zealand and based in Toronto. In this episode we talked about why the current uncertainty feels different than the normal uncertainty nomads experience, the need to make life feel more exciting/interesting, and exploring other aspects of our identity now that that central piece—travel—isn’t available to us.
Julie usually lives in Chile but went home to the United States to take care of her mother temporarily in early February. She's still there. Tune in as we talk about the challenges of a short-term visit that's unexpectedly turned into an indefinite one, dealing with lost income, deciding when/if to return to Chile, and lots more.
The Nomadtopia community is grappling with a whole new set of challenges in the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic. Like planes all over the world, we nomads have found ourselves grounded. Just like the regular monthly podcast, this weekly series will share the stories of nomads, expats, and other location-independent professionals and travelers as we explore what our Nomadtopia looks like right now and in the future.
Pascale didn't set out to be a nomad; she started freelancing simply because she couldn't survive in a corporate environment. But she also loved to travel and once she realized she could do her work from anywhere, she moved to Spain, and she has been nomadic on and off in the years since. Now a business coach, she joined me from her hometown, Montreal, where she was packing up and getting ready to head to Bali for the first time.
Norm had never been very interested in international travel, but in 2016 a short trip to Europe changed his life completely, inspiring him to leave the U.S. permanently and travel continuously. He joined me from Bangkok, Thailand, to share his story and what life has been like since early 2019 when he hit the road with his girlfriend at age 64.
After realizing that she wasn't really cut out for a regular job and feeling eager to spend more time abroad, Lena went independent with her work as an intercultural educator and hit the road with her partner. They tend to move slowly, spending months at a time in each place, which allows them to experience daily life in the local culture and also feel grounded enough to work effectively.
Ciara and her husband have moved five times in the last eight years, following his job postings around the world—and adding two kids to their family along the way. In that time she's experimented with different ways to make money remotely, learned how to quickly get set up in each new location, and navigated the shifts in identity that come with becoming a nomad and a mother.
Over many years of working for herself and traveling the world, Marianne Cantwell, founder of Free Range Humans, has created a balance that works for her. She's recently significantly streamlined her business and is now setting up a new home base in New York City. She joined me to talk about her business evolution, balancing home and travel, creating a life and career that works for you, and more.
Jessica and Will left the U.S. with their school-age children in 2014 and spent time living in Costa Rica, Ecuador, and the South of France before switching to living in an RV and exploring Europe. They join me to talk about how they've made this lifestyle work, including handling medical care, making decisions as a family, and lots more.
After her marriage ended, Lisa wasn't prepared to give up on her dream of living abroad as a family and taking her work with her. She started exploring other ways to make it happen, and eventually she and her five-year-old son headed to Maui for a three-month adventure. Tune in as we talk about the logistics she needed to sort out, what she learned from the experience, and lots more.
Location-independent work and rental property back home eased the way for Julie and her husband to move to Chile in 2017, where they've enjoyed settling into the local community in a seaside resort town. The adventure hasn't been without its challenges, though! Tune in as Julie and I talk about preparing to make this move, sorting out logistics, finding long-term accommodations during high season, and lots more.
Brandon and his family have been traveling the world for 10 years now, and have recently set up home bases in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, and Bali, Indonesia. In this episode we talk about how they've created the life they wanted, how finding meaning guides his decisions, their interest-led approach to educating their daughters, and lots more.
Having spent much of the past six years being fully nomadic, Tommo and Megsy are now more focused on the freedom of location independence to have a home base, travel when they want, and avoid winter. In this episode we talk about their challenges finding income streams that worked for them, food as inspiration to travel, and lots more.
After a few years of full-time travel, Marek found a home base in Lisbon, Portugal. He enjoys connecting with the local community when he's settling into a bit of a routine at home, and also spends a lot of time on the road in support of his travel blog.
Since 2017, Jayme and John (and their two dogs) have been living in a 1996 Chevy Express van, which they built out themselves for full-time living. They enjoy spending time in rural areas of the U.S. where the dogs can roam free and they can spend time on work or personal projects.
An intuitive hit that she was supposed to spend a year on the road led Carrie—a coach who was already location independent—to head off on a nomadic adventure full of powerful and memorable experiences, insights, and challenges. She joined me just after the year had officially ended, as she was reflecting on her trip and exploring what's next.