Sasha and Rachel – that’s us (Sasha is the dude, by the way) – from Detroit, MI and Johnson City, TN respectively. Music is a huge part of our lives. Our favorite music comes from jam bands, a genre of music that was started in large part by the Grateful Dead.
As most of the music played by jam bands is improvised, so too are our lives. To improvise means “to create or perform without preparation.”
We don’t have 5-year plans for our lives; we can’t even tell you what we’ll be doing this time next year. But we do know that it will be awesome and you should follow along!
We want to show the world that your life doesn’t have to follow a clear cut path. Let loose and see where it takes you – improvise your life!
It is our belief that we live on both a very big and very small planet and traveling is an important way to understand and appreciate people and our diverse cultures. However, traveling isn’t always easy and it’s certainly not cheap. We’ve funded our world travels by teaching English both in the classroom and now online. Our goal is to show you how you can do the same – live abroad and travel the world as an ESL teacher.
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Read on to hear our backstory….
We first met at Rothbury music festival in the summer of 2008. It was fleeting and Rachel didn’t remember it so well. Perhaps the bag of wine Sasha was toting around had something to do with that. Sasha remembered and two weeks later at Camp Bisco (another music festival) he proposed with a Ring Pop – down on one knee and everything – and just said: “Will you?” That certainly had Rachel’s attention.
Sasha already had plans to move to Beijing, China – talk about bad timing! He said the only thing that would bring him back early was if the band Phish got back together. At the end of that year, Phish announced their come-back tour for summer 2009. We made plans, bought lots of tickets and spent that entire summer seeing music, living out of tents and on couches, making long drives across the country and partying like rock stars. In the midst of all of it, we professed our love (for each other, love for music had been expressed long before) and decided to continue the fun past the summer.
Because of our love of music, we moved to Nashville in 2009. We lived in a friend’s attic. We searched for jobs for six months. Not a nibble. We scraped by on food stamps. Then, our house and car were robbed. No fun!
We bought one-way flights to Sasha’s beloved Beijing. Best decision ever! Teaching English in China allowed us to travel to places we never thought possible.
After working for over three years in Beijing we took a leap and hit the road for a 14 month long gap year around the USA and SE Asia. After that we moved to Kunming (also in China) for a year, teaching English and blogging.
Sasha was accepted into the 2015/2016 Darmasiswa program in Bali, Indonesia where he studied the language and culture. We lived there for 9 months and had an amazing time jet-setting around on our motor scooter, making new friends and taking in the beauty of the Island of the Gods. From volunteering at the Bali Spirit Festival to participating in the annual Nypepi festival, our time was nothing short of amazing.
The summer of 2016 saw us back on American soil for an epic month of music and plenty of time with family and friends. We decided to stick around through the holidays – mainly so we could catch Phish’s Halloween run in Vegas – and save up energy and money.
We kicked off 2017 by hopping on a bus down to Mexico to try our hand at digital nomad life. After hitting up Mexico’s three biggest cities and a couple of smaller towns, we realized we needed to slow down. Traveling as a digital nomad is not the same as backpacking! So we settled (temporarily) in Puerto Vallarta on Mexico’s Pacific coast.
It didn’t take us long to get itchy feet again. After only six months of life in Puerto Vallarta, we hit the road again, this time to South America. We spent 7 months traveling the continent while teaching English online. We made a list of all the big things we wanted to do in South America and I’m happy to say, we did them all!
That all brings us up to now, 2018. To celebrate knowing each other for a full decade, we decided to call 2018 the year-long party. Check out the announcement post to see what we’ve got planned! The idea is to hit up a festival, major sporting event, or cultural celebration every month for the entire year! Make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Instagram so you don’t miss any of the action.
When we’re not out partying, we’re chilling at our temporary base in Puerto Vallarta. We loved it here so much we just had to come back for more 🙂
How We Can Help You
The primary purpose of this website is simply to share our experiences traveling and living on the road. Whether you’re simply bored at work, looking for travel tips, or just enjoy reading a good story, looking at photos, and watching videos, we hope you can find something both interesting and helpful here.
Below you’ll find a description of the types of articles on this site. Whenever you’re ready, click here to get started!
Travel Tips – Stories from the road plus tips and photos about places we visit.
Teach ESL (English as a Second Language) – The profession that lead us to our location independent lifestyle. We’re you’re #1 resource for learning how to live abroad and travel the world as an ESL teacher!
Digital Nomad Life – Everything you need to know about being a digital nomad and working from the road.
Live Music – Read about our experiences at concerts and music festivals – our biggest passion in life.
Musings – Just our general thoughts, opinions, and stories.