Don’t you love lighthouses?

Lighthouses.

You know the buildings they build along the coast line, often at the confluence of stretches of water that can and often will be treacherous to the sailor bobbing like a cork in the sea. We were inspired to write this post after reading and enjoying the beautiful photos of lighthouses from around the world here.

This is a compilation of lighthouse photos we’ve captured over the years. Its a humble collection and nowhere near the spectacular ones in the link above, but it’s a start. Perhaps some day we will have a collection of these venerable structures standing up to the elements.

Do you love lighthouses? Climbed up one before?

We are voyagers, not travelers!

Yes. We picked up this term well over a year back in IG. Not that it is new. After all, the gutsy folks of the late 15th century were known as such when they set forth for the unknown, seeking for a shipping route from Europe to the fabled ‘riches’ of the far east.

Like many words, its meaning has evolved over time.

And today we are attaching one more meaning to this word. A noun more than a verb, we’ve replaced the title of “Tribal Chief” to “Voyager” in the certification roll of honour. Remember our business plan here?

You know all about nomads. They move about a lot and perhaps follow the seasons too like those folks waaay back. And you have to be persistent. Not just doing it for a year and expect to be accredited as Voyager. Because a Voyager is more than a nomad and takes committment. This is a person who charts out the unknown (to the rest of us at least). While the nomad has no permanent home, the Voyager calls the four seas his abode (四海为家)… heck we all call planet earth our home! Hmmm…

Well over the last 12 months we had been shuffling around spending time in various places for work (project mainly). And it we did it for more than a year. Add the >8 years we were outside of our country we think we qualify ourselves as Voyagers. Heheh…

So ends our meaningless rant for today. Voyaging matters to us. Does it matter to you? Still interested in getting that accreditation?

Financing a life of travel

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Imagine if this stack of money was real and yours!

Ever wish you had an endless stream of income that would finance your traipsing around the world? Wouldn’t it be nice to not worry about how to pay for making the journey? Well we’ve read quite a fair bit of bloggers writing about getting around the world in the cheapest way, seeking out activities that are free to do etc. There have been quite a few who journeyed around the world on bike or foot or public transport too (here and here)!

To us that is all well and good.

But would the journey to Pisa be the same without paying for the climb up the tower that leans? Would one really climb all the way to the Great Wall instead of taking the cable car? Hmmm….. Some things in life are indeed free to enjoy, but many of the experiences would probably not.

Today though our post is not just on the boon and bane of traveling on the cheap.

It’s about financial preparedness. And it is applicable not just for paying one’s travel journeys, but also the journey we call life. When we were young (and your heart was an open book), you might say live and let live…. heheh… sorry cannot help it because it was ringing in Mel’s head (for those G&R fans out there!). Before one get carried away by the travel bug and “squander” one’s youth away, would it not be wise to look a little ahead? For we have said repeatedly; time is but the only thing one cannot claw back or keep in store for later use. You do only live once, but you are also only young and energetic once.

Having a portfolio of assets that repeatedly produce income would be wonderful don’t you think? Like the proverbial goose laying a golden egg everyday. We call our finance independence theory the “Golden egg Goose” concept. You heard about it here first. What do you think?

How much of the world have you covered?

How well do you compare with the Queen or the likes of Sir David Attenborough when it comes to scouring the earth? Check it out here. Now they might not have covered ALL sovereign countries like James did (we wrote about it here), but they certainly have been places that we would be restricted from entering! But that said, we’ve probably also been places they would not be able to.

Do you count the number of countries you have visited? Hopefully not because of the bragging rights it is supposed to confer! Ok, we admit that our handprint maps do border on that… heheh. Hypocrites we are… sigh. Sorry.

How much have you coveredWe are regular contributors to Tripadvisor. And whenever you put in a review, they will clock in the city you have visited to your tally. Of course you can also go to the map and clock in the cities  without a review too. That takes integrity though because you must had visited. So be honest!

And the interesting thing is they have a little counter that tells you how many percent of the world you have traveled to.

So it’s not about how many countries but the number of places one’s touched. According to this tool, our tally comes in at 42%. Not too sure about the distances traveled though. Perhaps it has to do with where one is based. Wow. Would you believe in such information? We wrote in our post on how things change (here) that there is a lot of space on our spinning spaceship to cover (such as the last continent). So not for one moment we believe this, though it was the first time we noticed it.

Why do you count the number of countries you visited?

Look at that flag counter

Sometime last year, we added a free flag counter to our blog. The purpose, as most of you who do the same is to “track” how many people visit our blog and from which parts of the world. If you click the counter you will be brought to the actual counter page.

There are additional attributes that feature details of which state in the US the visitors come from. This feature is free for the US and Canada only, and you will need to pay if you wish to get even more ‘granular’ information about visitors from other large countries.

But today we are not promoting the use of the flag counter.

Rather it is the flags in the counter that we are focused upon. When we look up the flag counter site every now and then, we look at the number of countries that have been captured based on where visitors to our blog came from. And it surprises us to see the names of countries that we don’t even recognize. 196. In case you were wondering how many countries are there in the world. Good as of this year we guess unless we have more secessions…

So by the personal record, we are still around 74 short… heheh. Talk about collecting flags we are also short of 1 state in the US. For some reason we do not have anyone from North Dakota visiting our site. Oh why?

Did not know that there are so many countries in the world? Well, watch out for the handprint stories we are posting on micro states in Europe! Without looking it up, how many of the flags do you recognize and can tell which country it represents?

A job that brings you places

Imagine that. A job that actually requires you to live in a different city each month even as you worked on a full time, permanent role. And be paid with benefits too… Isn’t that the dream of nomads of this world (hey the certificate is still available here) to have such a sweet spot?

If this (read article here) is truly available to you, would you jump up and take the offer?

Some time back, we wrote about mobile talent (here). It may not be exactly the vision you get when looking at the instagram posts of those who claim to be successful digital nomads. In fact it’s more conventional. More like working 9-5, what a way to make a living (barely getting by) but for shorter stints and in different locations. We gave some examples in that post but we are sure some of you dear readers would know of more. Care to share any?

Our own experience was one of moving around the world not many many times over a short period. Instead, we stayed for a number of years in a different location each time. And on different continents too. That gave us not only the opportunity to experience very different work environments but also the chance to explore a broad area while domiciled temporarily (albeit for a few years) in a fixed spot. And it gave depth to our soujorns too.

Our rationale: being in a particular place for too short a period of time may not sufficiently give you an all rounded experience. For the slightly longer durations we stayed facilitated us learning a new language, being able to prepare local food and building life long friendships.

Would this not count as being a nomad?