Wednesday, November 7, 2012

High-Flyin' Rootlessness

"Hello, Dubai! It's me!"

My mother sent me this Wall Street Journal article in the mail: The Sell-the-House, See-the-World Retirement, by Lynne Martin (one half of the article's subject couple).

The Martins conduct slow travel around the world, staying in one place for about a month at a time. It's a nice way to do things.

And not so different from any traveler who's sold her house and stuff and taken off, comme moi, or a backpacker, or location-independent entrepreneur (including even that subspecies nomadic entrepreneur, the shudder-inducing"lifestyle designer" - never heard of it? just google it), or ESL teacher who relocates every year or two.

We all have the same budget items: lodging, food, entertainment, clothing, transportation, etc.

The difference is primarily in the amount of money we all have to work with. In the Martins' case, they've got $6000 per month (plus their Social Security).

If I were to add anything to the Martins' article in WSJ, I'd say reassuring things to all of the folks in the middle, the people of more modest means who aren't in the Martins' travel stratum, and are uninterested in the backpacker or just-above levels, but who really want to chuck it all and travel full time. 

I'd say, yes, it's doable, and research doesn't cost anything. So why not look into it?

Western Europe is mind-numbingly expensive for a long-term traveler (not to mention the crush of humanity you'll be sharing it with), but there are wondrous alternatives in eastern Europe and the Caucasus, which are just as chockful of history and both manmade and natural beauty, and which are much gentler on the wallet.  

There are less costly, but just as sensory-rich alternatives to most all of the big-ticket travel destinations. Check it out.

Just take a look at this sigh-worthy place on Lake Atitlan in Guatemala - $700 per month (sometimes less!).

Credit: HomeAway

The laborer on the cargo boat at the top of this post? He's seeing the same sights as the tourists - like me - enjoying pricy drinks at the restaurants along Dubai Creek. 

No comments: