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  • Writer's picturenacilia mccarthy

Why I Decided To Travel Full Time

Remember that horrible thing that happened in 2020? It was awful for so many reasons. One of those things was that we had to be isolated from everyone for too long. There was no travel, no events, and no real kind of socialization. At a moment’s notice, all of those things had ceased. The irony was that I had planned a month-long trip to Europe which would have started in London. I bought a round-trip airline ticket on January 2nd of that year. I remember the ticket cost only $399, round trip from JFK New York. The plan was to spend some time in the UK, spend some time in France and Germany, and then make my way back to London and ultimately the United States. That plan changed in March 2020 when it was announced that all outbound international flights were canceled. That same year I also had planned to go to Canada for Caribana. I hadn’t bought an airline ticket yet but I had prepaid for the hotel package. Needless to say, I had to put those plans on hold. I didn't realize how much on hold that would later become. Like a lot of other people, I got laid off from my job at the time, I did get another job but would subsequently get laid off from a job each year for the next four years. Yes, you read right. I got laid off from four jobs between 2020 and 2024. During that time I was living in Los Angeles and my rent was ridiculously high, so it’s safe to say that at the time most of my money was going towards rent. Fast forward, in 2021 I started taking local trips whenever I had a long weekend. I would go to Catalina Island, Sausalito, Napa Valley, and a couple of other places. Then in 2022, I wanted to get away for my birthday but didn't have the budget for it so I decided to go to San Diego. To help make the trip feel a little more elevated, I booked a business class Amtrak ticket and booked a night at a hotel. This way I knew I wouldn't have to rush back to LA. The train ride alone made the trip well worth it. The following year I decided to take that long-awaited European summer trip. And what a trip it was. I visited three countries, two cities in one of those countries, and had one long layover in Morocco which left me curious enough to want to go back and visit. The main countries I visited were Portugal, Spain, and France (Southern France). Lisbon was my first stop in Portugal and the Azores was my last stopover on my way back to the US.

I had traveled solo before as a child, but that was only a plane ride from Jamaica to New York where I was escorted by a flight attendant and greeted at the airport by my parents, and I was with my younger brother, so that doesn't count. I had also taken a solo trip to the US Virgin Islands when I was 19. But that was by accident because I was meeting my family there for a wedding that ended up being canceled and I only ended up going because we had already prepaid for the hotel, so that doesn't count. And I had taken solo getaway trips locally and while that counts, it wasn't the same. This time was different. I felt a freedom that I had never felt before. I knew I wanted to do more trips this way.

Now here we are today. I have decided to travel full-time and make the world my office. I have always wanted to work overseas but wasn’t sure how to achieve this. Now you get to watch me do it in almost real-time. After getting laid off so many times, I realized that it was time for me to change things up. Of course, I will still be working, but it won't look the same way it used to look. In terms of ambition, it feels like I have already achieved the goals I had set for myself here in the US. I worked in entertainment for multiple TV Networks and brands, I had my work featured in publications and I even got to work on four ads that were featured on billboards in Times Square. It’s time for me to move to take the next step in this next act of life and you get to see it.

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