I can’t count how many times I’ve heard people say, “I wish I could give everything up and move to a hut on the beach.” Well, you can. I did! And it was the best thing I’ve ever done for myself. The year I spent in Playas del Coco, Costa Rica, most of the time in a tiny one-room house surrounded by ear-splitting roosters and howler monkeys, was the happiest of my life.
Despite those loud animals, I conquered my life-long insomnia. Plugged in to an adventurous community of expats and travelers like me, I made friends from all over the world. And in my pueblo, I made friends with whom I could truly be myself. In fact, I can honestly say that I was more myself this year than at any other time in my life.
And with that thought, I’m suddenly packing my bags for… Las Vegas. As in, gambling, boozing, up-all-night, neon-packed Sin City.
The justification is simple: The expat life will always be there; in fact, I was one of the youngest in my community. But a job that’s seemingly tailored just for me? Not a chance.
But that’s not why I’m taking it.
Let’s backtrack to Thursday, June 24. I was in NYC, gearing up for the TBEX travel blogging conference. For the rest of my life, when I go over the series of events that’s yanking me out of my idyllic sabbatical, I know without a doubt that sometime that day something inside of me changed. I was no longer tolerating a visit to the city in the spirit of seeing my friends; without warning, I suddenly felt comfortable there again. Coco started to reinvent itself as an exotic, far-away memory, no longer my home. Instead of my thoughts of Costa Rica feeling comfy, like they always had been, it was weirdly So Exciting that I lived there. Daydreaming of my time there felt like reminiscing about a vacation, which by definition always comes to an end.
I put those thoughts on hold, but I knew that whenever the move ended up happening, the idea gave birth that day. As luck would have it, however, within a week I got that cinematic, life-changing email… An exciting job offer was suddenly available: “Would I consider moving back?”
The universe manifested this for me, and I’m not wasting one breath arguing. I will never, ever regret this decision; it wasn’t mine to make.
I’ve taken to saying that my year of adventure is coming to an end, but now I realize that that’s ridiculous. After a year of reflection, peace, centering and rest, I am ready for anything. My adventure is just beginning.
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