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SymphonicDan

[SymphonicDan] quits his job and travels the world [Level 19]

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I'm serious - it's happening!

 

For the past 4+ years I've been a software developer at a pretty cool company, but it's time for a change. I've always wanted to spend some months travelling around the world, and now is my chance :) I also compete at the international level at mental calculation and have big competitions coming up in September (in Germany) and November (in Las Vegas).

 

My intention is to travel around Europe in September before the first competition while training, and somewhere more exotic before the competition in the USA.

 

As an introduction for everyone new, I'm a 25-year-old British guy who enjoys gymnastics, handstands, bodyweight training, climbing, slacklining, piano compositionfootballsalsa dancing and Spanish. I used to work out ~5 times per week but recently I've lost motivation :( My peak was about a year ago when I created the training video but not sure I could do 100% of the moves there anymore...

 

At the end of July I'm also competing in the Urban Ninja obstacle course race :) ...and I have a driving test in early August.

 

So this challenge I have two main goals:

  1. Prepare for my travelling adventure
  2. Regain the exercise habit

 

The challenge is simply a checklist of items - with points for each:

  • any gymnastics or strength workout, climbing, slacklining or salsa session (1 point each) : 7 (last updated Aug-04)
  • finally learn to do a bar muscle-up (5 points)
  • quit my job! (1 point)
  • make plans to move out (2 points)
  • create detailed packing list (1 point)
  • plan destinations for Europe trip (2 points)
  • book flights for Europe trip (1 point)
  • plan destinations for October trip (2 points)
  • book flights for October trip (1 points)
  • more Spanish practice (2 points)
  • update CV (1 point)
  • compose a piano version of "Sahara" by Nightwish (6 points)
  • create a recording of "Sahara" like the one I made for the Hopak dance (3 points)

 

 

grade A: 50+ points

grade B: 40+ points

grade C: 32+ points

grade D: 25+ points

 

Good luck everyone! :)

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Thanks everyone for the support! I still can't believe that I'm actually quitting my job and travelling around the world, but over the past few days it's steadily seemed more and more real now that I've:

  • made this challenge haha
  • spoke with a friend who recommends a language school in Spain that sounds perfect
  • told my housemates I'm moving out
  • discussed it with friends from work
  • actually handed in my notice to leave work (!)
  • told my landlord that I'll be moving out

It definitely helps to talk about it, otherwise I'd probably have been too scared to hand in my resignation :o

 

In other news, today I went bouldering and made some progress on the routes from last week. In particular there's a crazy route that involves dyno -> deadhang -> figure 4 to grab next hold -> swing to heel hook and I got that far with it before I couldn't find the next move and fell. Then my grip was too fried and I couldn't get past the figure 4 hold again. And it's pretty awkward when you're upside-down in a figure 4 and realize you haven't got the strength to unfurl yourself so you have to drop off and unfurl yourself mid-air to escape haha.

 

And then I went swimming for the first time in 21 months. There's a 90-metre outdoor pool in Cambridge so we went there. Fun, but pretty cold even though it was 27'C air temperature and very sunny, but maybe that's just me having too little fat and being a wimp. I find front crawl so effortful these days - I guess I've lost some fitness there, and it doesn't help when the water's cold so the blood leaves your external organs (i.e., swimming muscles) in order to prevent losing too much heat. And I sink in freshwater :P

 

Ooh, and tomorrow I finally finally have explicit plans to go to gymnastics for the first time since my injury. So hopefully that'll happen...

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That sounds like you're on a great wave up again :)

So much yay to swimming, bouldering and hopefully gymnastics even on top!!

 

Wow, it must seem unreal, I bet it will feel surreal and real at the same time still when you actually head out your door! Isn't that so much LIFE happening? I am totally in awe of you for doing this. And a little jelly :D and suuuuuuuuuuper excited for you!!!! 

You seem to be preparing excellently for it and with every step of the journey more will show, I'm sure. You are aware that we will want to hear and see all about it, right :D

 

How long do you still go to work?

 

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Congrats on quitting your job! That must make it feel so much more real.

 

5 hours ago, SymphonicDan said:

And it's pretty awkward when you're upside-down in a figure 4 and realize you haven't got the strength to unfurl yourself so you have to drop off and unfurl yourself mid-air to escape haha.

 

That does not sound like fun in my books. :wacko:

 

5 hours ago, SymphonicDan said:

And I sink in freshwater


Swim faster. :P 

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8 hours ago, Asa Pond said:

Wow. This is Awesome! I'd love to quit my job and travel the world! One day... 

 

Definitely following along. :)

 

Hey good to see you here :) If you want to travel the world, make a potential plan for where you might go, and you'll get an idea of how realistic it is and what you'd need to plan beforehand. Maybe your initial plan wouldn't resemble what you actually end up doing, but you'll have to answer the same questions for the arbitrary initial plan as you would for the real trip. Things like "where would I stay if I had 5 nights in X?" "how would I travel to A, B, C and D without it being stupidly expensive?" "how many days could I spend in Y before getting bored and wanting to move on?"

 

 

16 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

Swim faster. :P 

 

Aha I would but swimming is so effortful for me now! I can do a pretty rapid front crawl for about 20 metres but then I'm exhausted and have to switch to back crawl.

 

 

18 hours ago, lucky fire dragon said:

You seem to be preparing excellently for it and with every step of the journey more will show, I'm sure. You are aware that we will want to hear and see all about it, right :D

 

How long do you still go to work?

 

Ahh I feel like there is still so much to sort out! I don't even know where I'm going yet :o I have about one month still to work. And yes I don't plan to disappear - I can still do challenges and share my adventures :)

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So today, none of the 3 managers mentioned my resignation to me haha. Almost like they didn't want me to leave so they just ignored it :P But apparently we'll speak on Thursday to sort things out.

 

I did also go to gymnastics tonight for the first time in forever. Fun times :)

  • looks like I can still handstand for 7+ seconds (we were doing a competition as warm-up)
  • strength has decreased on the gymnastics rings but I can still do a muscle-up on them
  • frontflips are mediocre... I tried a new technique of throwing my arms up as I jump rather than just running with them up. I can believe that this will work better for me but I need to practise it more first
  • I can still land handsprings on the tumble track and did some work trying to look at my hands during the handstand part rather than tucking my head to my chin
  • also did some work on bar muscle-ups which I'd like to learn this challenge
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18 hours ago, SymphonicDan said:

Ahh I feel like there is still so much to sort out! I don't even know where I'm going yet :o I have about one month still to work. And yes I don't plan to disappear - I can still do challenges and share my adventures :)

 

Plenty of time. ;) And good, because I plan on living vicariously through you the next few months.

 

 

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Oh, woaaa! You even quit your job! You're ready to take a big step in life! Will be here to follow your amazing adventures and to look at those pictures you will upload for us.

Which day are you leaving? Where will you go first?

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Fkdlaksjdfldld

AWESOMESAUCE

your challenge is going so flipping well!! (pun very intended)

Way to go on quitting your job to follow this goal, you've put so much planning into this. What a giant step!

Ps ignore my question in my thread lol I clearly hadn't read far enough in yours.

Sent from the void

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Oh, woaaa! You even quit your job! You're ready to take a big step in life! Will be here to follow your amazing adventures and to look at those pictures you will upload for us.

Which day are you leaving? Where will you go first?

Seconded!! Same questions here.

Sent from the void

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On 7/19/2016 at 7:21 PM, zenLara said:

Oh, woaaa! You even quit your job! You're ready to take a big step in life! Will be here to follow your amazing adventures and to look at those pictures you will upload for us.

Which day are you leaving? Where will you go first?

 

Not sure yet when I'm leaving.... I really need to sort that out!! Probably I'm starting travels at the end of August :)

 

 

On 7/20/2016 at 1:40 PM, Happienumber said:

Fkdlaksjdfldld

 

I don't know what language this is but I presume it represents excitement :P Good to have you here!

 

Today: went outside into the sun and practised handstands in the nearby park. Seems that when I look at my hands I arch my back rather than just bending my neck, so I worked on that and it seemed to improve things.

 

While I'm travelling I'd like some particular training project to work on, like the handstands video in 2014. It has to be something that I can do almost anywhere and anytime, preferably outside. At the moment my ideas are:

  • get much better at hand balancing
  • improve 5k or 1 mile run time (I never really trained running)
  • learn some other cool skill (what?)

So if anyone has any suggestions, please offer them :)

 

The big thing I'm working on next is planning where I'm going to go... my plan had been to go to Costa Rica in October, but it's the rainy season so probably that's not a good idea. Might travel to Eastern Europe in September, Spain and USA in October and then Central America in November once the rains have stopped? Would also like to get back to South East Asia some time... decisions...

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Saw the little challenge blurb and got so excited for you! Traveling can be so rewarding and refreshing after not being able to do it for a while.

As far as timeline, things are going to be MUCH cheaper if you wait until after school starts at the end of August. We went to Europe for our honeymoon (7 years ago) and hit up four major countries and it was much more affordable in October. However, we ran into people that told us tips for making it even cheaper. Don't bother with hotels they said. An elderly couple from WA told us they just shopped for places on airbnb or similar vacation rental by owner (VRBO) sites and snagged a great little apartment right in the heart of Paris that they could use as a base for all their other travels. They rented it for a month I think, giving them a place to cook, wash clothes, and plan other excursions. We did the hotel thing and ended up washing clothes in a bathtub at one point... haha.

I also called a travel agency connected with Rick Steves and talked with them about my ideas, and the lady actually made up a suggested itinerary for me which helped a lot in guiding our decisions. I hunted airline websites on my own (agencies charge a commission fee for booking) for sales, usually there are discounts the day before a big sale holiday, like fourth of july, labor day, etc. And if you see some kind of awesome fare on an airline's actual website, screenshot it in case you lose it and most times they will honor it over the phone if they can. =)

I think you have a good idea to push south america further down the line towards winter, since it will be nicer then. And language school! My friend just did one in France and he loved it. He lives in Korea and said it was cheaper to visit other countries than come back home to the US right now.

Gah so excited for you. Makes me want to plan another trip. Been meaning to take the family to Japan for a while now...

Sent by my Navi-powered device!

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Thanks for the advice Alexandrite :) I'm definitely not in the budget for hotels (and travelling alone usually I'd have to get a double room and pay double) but hostels should be fine. The language school has accommodation, so that could be convenient.

 

Laundry is the biggest faff when travelling. I've already promised myself to bring 7+ changes of clothes so I don't have to worry about finding laundry services every few days! Maybe I'll still have to resort to the bathtub (like when I hiked along the camino towards Santiago de Compostela, staying in special basic accommodation).

 

I generally don't go with tour agencies because:

  • they're more expensive
  • if the trip is not booked in detail beforehand, there's the chance to make changes... so if I find a nice place I can stay longer, or if someplace is boring I can escape elsewhere

Japan seems a cool place - I hope you get around to it at some point :)

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6 hours ago, SymphonicDan said:
  • if the trip is not booked in detail beforehand, there's the chance to make changes... so if I find a nice place I can stay longer, or if someplace is boring I can escape elsewhere

^This^.

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On 7/22/2016 at 1:50 AM, SymphonicDan said:

While I'm travelling I'd like some particular training project to work on, like the handstands video in 2014. It has to be something that I can do almost anywhere and anytime, preferably outside. At the moment my ideas are:

  • get much better at hand balancing
  • improve 5k or 1 mile run time (I never really trained running)
  • learn some other cool skill (what?)

 

Obviously I vote handbalancing: :P Or rings. Or maybe you should pick up something that you can use to connect with random people, like playing (a small) instrument or juggling!

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