Greetings fellow readers! It’s that time of the month again — time for us to read about the story of another wonderful blogger that has discovered a new life through travel. In many parts of the world, the fall season’s just started and my Instagram feed is filled with spectacular fall pictures; but here in India, things are just beginning to get a little drier, though the mercury’s still soaring well past 30 degrees in the day. For November ’15, we have something different in store for The Blogger of the Month series.
Bio: Allow me to introduce to you, Victoria and Elaina — partners, in travel, business, and life, and the two wonderful girls behind The Freedom Travellers. Vic and Elaina come from very different backgrounds, but had one major drive in common — travel. They both quit promising corporate jobs almost two years ago to travel more, and document their stories. They are both very gregarious and pride themselves on having an ever-growing community of international friends. Victoria describes them as spontaneous and promises that they don’t take themselves too seriously. So without further ado, I hand over the reigns to our lovebirds for the day — Vic & Elaina.
Dusky: Tell us a little more about how you two met, your joint histories, and how travel played a part in bringing you both together! (Who doesn’t enjoy a good love-story, yeah?)
Vic: We met at work. In fact, Elaina was my boss! I’m originally from the UK and moved to Australia around 6 years ago now. We’d worked together for around two years, before we got together. We haven’t been apart since. When we fell in love, we realized we wanted so much more from our lives and travel was definitely a BIG part of that. We’ve both lived and worked all over the world, so it was a very natural transition for us when we started this nomadic lifestyle together.
Dusky: What’s the highest item on your bucket list, that you’re yet to tick off?
Elaina: It has to be an over-water bungalow in Bora Bora. This has been on both of our bucket lists for years — also happens to be where we plan on spending our honeymoon next year 😉 (aw! you lucky girls!)
Dusky: You both come from different professional backgrounds. Presently, how do you both earn most of your income, and how do you manage work when you travel together?Vic: We have a few different income streams that allow us to live and work from anywhere that has a wifi connection. I’m a freelance writer (my background is journalism and communications) which is great as I can choose the jobs I take and how much time I commit to.
Elaina also does some project management gigs from home — that’s her background. Obviously, we are working on making our blog a profitable business and are in the process of developing some amazing products for our community.
We also have a network marketing business which is health and wellness, a booming industry right now. We earn a residual income for helping people achieve their personal health goals which is a pretty amazing way to earn a living from anywhere! We’re always looking for savvy entrepreneurial go-getters to jump on board with us in this business. It’s definitely a team effort and we are so lucky to work with some of our best friends on a daily business. We also get to travel the world together, which is pretty cool! (Phew! That sounds like a pretty comprehensive list of businesses, doesn’t it?)
Dusky: One bizarre incident on the road that will stay with you forever!
Vic: Being chased down by police in Papua New Guinea when I was living over there (it was a case of mistaken identity)… not something that’s easy to forget! (HAHAHAHA! I’ve got to hear more of this story.)
Elaina: When I was traveling in Colombia, I hadn’t had my passport stamped which is apparently a big no-no when entering the country. I asked the locals what I should do and they totally freaked out and called the police! I had to get back to the bus stop and get back to the border (a five hour drive) asap to get my passport stamped. It was a very scary experience that will definitely stay with me forever!
Dusky: One random/hilarious thing you’ve both wanted to do (need not be the same for you both) but haven’t had the gall to pull off, just yet!
Elaina: I want to sail a boat around the Caribbean. I have no sailing experience but it’s something I’ve always wanted to do. I got a crew job on a boat that was sailing from Chile to New Zealand, but the timing just didn’t work out in the end. Since then it’s always been something I’ve wanted to do. (Wow! You better hit me up when you end up doing this — this is right down the alley, for an ‘aspiring pirate’!)
Vic: I really want to do zorbing. Google it. Looks awesome! (HAHA! Really? Me and some friends had a vendor offering zorbing as an experience for a college event — we just thought nobody’d want to do it! Silly us!)
Dusky: This one’s particularly sacred to me and immensely personal. Describe one moment from your journeys that you’d point out as a moment of absolute clarity – one where you felt the most absolute of absolutions about anything.
Vic & Elaina: Sitting in the surf in Sri Lanka as the sun was setting. A moment that we’ll never forget as it was in that moment that we got super clear on what we wanted our life to look like. After that, we went home and quit our jobs!
Dusky: Describe one place you stumbled upon that is relatively off the tourist map and you deliberately didn’t speak about on your blog. You don’t have to name it, just describe the moment and the place!
Vic: There are heaps of special places that we love to duck off to, here in Australia. Hidden beaches, no phone reception or wifi. Just the ocean, pristine beaches and getting back to nature. When we decide to take time off, there’s one particular beach that we head to. The closest store is a 20 minute drive away, so it’s pretty secret!
Dusky: One item you carry with you on your journeys that has absolutely no right or reason to be with you on the road, but you still can’t leave it behind!
Vic: Our gym gear. We take it everywhere and never end up using it. But we always take it…you know…just in case! HA!
Dusky: Name your favorite beer and the languages you can order a beer in.
Vic: We actually gave up alcohol this year, but before that we were partial to a Dos Equis beer. As such, we can definitely order a beer in Spanish!
Other languages that we’ve mastered this in are French and Portugese. A good trick is to simply say the brand name of the beer you’re after…that works a treat!
Dusky: How do your families feel about what you do? How do you manage to maintain a balance between your social lives from back home and being constantly on the move?
Vic: Our families don’t really understand what we do now. They think we just travel and not much else. We have a home base in Sydney so when we are in between trips we are back in our apartment, training at the gym every day and catching up with our friends. They all understand the kind of lifestyle we have now, in fact many of them are entrepreneurs and bloggers themselves so it’s easy to slip back into our friendships for that reason. I think when you’ve lived abroad for an extended period you realise who your friends really are.
Dusky: Describe one funny/bizarre local ritual/tradition you experienced on your travels. How do you think people would react back home, if this became part of their everyday lives?
Vic: The food in Asia can be pretty bizarre. As a westerner it can seem crazy to eat insects on a stick! Guinea Pigs are a staple food item in Peru…and we keep them as pets! So that would seem pretty bizarre to anyone who’s ever had one as a pet. (HAHA! Can’t disagree with that one.)
Dusky: 13. Name the person you’d want to deliver an eulogy for you. Give a short version of what you’d like to hear in it!
Vic: This is honestly something I have never really given much thought to but I guess I’d want my eulogy to be given by someone who I love and respect…and I’d simply want to be remembered for living an extraordinary life.
Elaina: I don’t really mind who delivers it, but I guess I’d like to be remembered for always having fun and adventurous!
That’s it then, folks! It was wonderful to catch up with this super-couple. Where I come from, same-sex couples are still an underground phenomenon, and people are just beginning to realize they are the exact same person as we, except for one minute detail which shouldn’t matter to anybody except the individual themselves. Naturally, it was refreshing for me personally, to know I share so much common ground with another two heroes of my life! You go girls! You’re awesome.