Last day of ‘normal’ life

This time tomorrow I will be just leaving German airspace, on my way to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. The sun goes down in Sweden in about an hour, and I’ll take off before it comes up again. The last weeks have gone alternately fast and slow, and now time is both flying and crawling.  I…

Sweden vs. The World: Travel Insurance

If you have every paid for travel insurance and you are not from Sweden, you might want to stop reading now. Or start packing your bags for a residence-earning stay in Scandinavia. Wyatt Cenac’s segment ‘Stockholm Syndrom‘ for the Daily Show hardly grazed the skin of the reality of living in this socialist nightmare: “She smells…

Gainful employment is overrated

I’m gainfully employed. I might have my ‘termination of contract’ letter sitting in my inbox, but let’s ignore that. I’m gainfully employed and it is stressing me out. Big time. I have a head cold, which I think is due to the fact that I’m American and my body failed to realise that I wasn’t…

Snakes, no, CATS! on a plane

Today was the worst day I’ll have leading up to my departure. I hope, anyway. At a moment’s notice I found someone to porter Wally the cat over to Canada, where he will stay with friends for the indefinite future. Since I don’t have a partner here in Sweden, no kids and no immediate family, Wally…

Three months to go: reflections

I have a confession to make. I have less than three months to go. Sort of. In a nutshell: my work contract runs out on December 31, and on that day I will board a plane into the great unknown.  But actually, I have received an award and stipend from the Hasselblad Foundation (as in…

Four months to go: reflections

Today is four months until I take off, and about two months since I made my decision to quit my job and travel indefinitely. Here is an update on my progress, what I still need to do before I go and my general feelings on my choice and life in general. Done: Started selling stuff…

Ten things I won’t miss at all when traveling

A couple of weeks ago I posted a list outlining the items that I will miss when I’m on the road. But so far downsizing my life has also been pretty liberating and overall a positive move. For some balance, here is a list of ten things I won’t miss at all when I take flight!…

Budget Cuts: Part 1

How in the world do I expect to go from a reasonable ‘grown-up’ salary to no salary at all in the span of six months?  Well, savings will of course make up a pretty major part of it. I have kicked into high-gear saving mode, and here is the breakdown of what I have cut…

Ten things I will miss from home when traveling

I have begun downsizing. I got rid of the half empty paint cans in the storage locker. I sold my netbook. The tank-tops I somehow still had from my junior high school days are no more. I’ve bid farewell to the muffin tins and my BPA water bottle that had overstayed its welcome anyhow. But…

The planning begins: five months till take off

I’ll be leaving my home and job here in Sweden in just over five months – or 165 days to be exact. This is the close future, but not close enough that I have started to panic yet. As I am still reasonably calm, I am going to use this time to really plan and…