Beginnings of a Digital Nomad: The Remote Year – Day 1
Gone are the days of the traditional 9-5; upon us is the beginning of a digital, remote revolution! Woe to the corporate cubicle and cheers to the freedom bestowed upon the online entrepreneur's earning capabilities, who can so skillfully procure countless amounts of revenue with ease by just a few simple clicks of a button or through a handful of select, masterfully crafted messages on their mobile computers.
With the ease of travel—combined with the unlimited access of information available at our fingertips via the internet—remote work/living/travel is becoming the norm more so than ever before. And why wouldn't you choose to live like this? Why would you ever walk the path of the corporate wage slave? Along with the everlasting feeling of uncertainty of where your next paycheck will come from, there's a price to pay for being an online entrepreneur; albeit, in my mind, a minuscule price to pay for the freedom afforded to those willing to take the risk of “being your own boss.” The price? Never-ending uncertainty—or rather, anxiety—inherent in the lack of financial security, along with an insatiable appetite to work/grind due to the feeling that enough is, well, really never enough.
It is with this in mind that I present to you, “Beginnings of a Digital Nomad: The Remote Year.” My remote year.
As I mentioned in my intro post, I would be selling/giving away all my stuff in order to live and work remotely throughout the world. Well, my friends, that day has arrived.
Two weeks later, I'm awoken by the voice of my assistant Marie at 4:30 am. “Angelo? Are you awake? It's already 4:30.” FUCK!!! After going to bed just past 1 am, I had set my alarm to go off two-and-a-half hours later, but managed to sleep through it due to the enormous amount of sleep debt I had incurred over the last few nights...alcohol + the Vegas nightlife + intense 16-hour workdays will do that to you.
After a quick shower, I scramble to get the last of my belongings jammed into the little amount of free space I had in each of my suitcases; all of my life's material possessions tucked away into one check-in, one carry-on, and a backpack. 20 minutes later we're in an Uber en route to McCarran Airport checking in for our LAS-LAX-DOH-BKK travel route, one of the most intense travel routes I've had to date: one hour to Los Angeles for a seven-hour layover, followed by a 15-hour flight to Doha with another two-and-a-half-hour layover, ending with a six-hour flight to Bangkok where we'd wait for the arrival of my business partner Rene @world5list and my girlfriend Christina (Marie's older sister).
LAS-LAX? Piece of cake. Slept the whole one-hour ride through. What I thought would be a relaxing yet productive/work-filled seven-hour layover in an airport lounge—which Rene was nice enough to gift us beforehand—instead turned into a four-hour wait for our flight's baggage drop to open (no airline codeshare between Virgin America and Qatar Airlines so we had to leave security, pick up our bags, and check in again with Qatar) followed by a mass exodus of immigrants, American tourists, and us bottlenecked at security buzzing to leave the country.
We manage to get through smoothly and make our way to the lounge with about three hours left to spare. Eat, pass out on a plush leather seat, wake up, and head to our gate...oh the dread of the 15 hours ahead of us confined in a sardine-like aviation capsule breathing in recycled air and nourishing ourselves with overly salted food. This is the one time in my life that a lack of sleep came to my advantage, for I was able to pass out for the majority of the ride except to eat. Before I knew it, we had landed in Doha.
Enter Doha, Qatar. To the unbeknownst, images of sand, burkas, and beards come to mind, when in reality, we step into one of the most amazing airports I had ever seen! The Arabic inclination for fine architecture and luxurious amenities is present all throughout the facility, leading one to think that the entire country outside these walls is a five-star resort. After making our way through to the proper waiting area, I desperately try to connect to the airport-provided WiFi in order to catch up on crucial, time-sensitive texts sent by my employees, business associates, and most importantly, my girlfriend ;)
He, Marie, and I proceed to gather our bags, head outside for some fresh air, then reenter to find a spacious café table to indulge in some refreshments and talk shop in order to kill a couple hours before Christina arrives. As the time of her arrival approaches, I rush back downstairs and stay occupied with a few more work-related calls. But before I know it, she strolls out like an angel. Dressed in some black yoga pants and a hoodie, I can tell she froze her ass off during her Vienna-Kiev-Bangkok flights...I mean, who the hell wears a hoodie in Bangkok?!?!
Nevertheless, we're happy to be reunited and make our way to the taxi stand. “Sawaree kap, Thonglor soi seep-bad” (translation: “Hello, Thonglor Avenue alley 18”). It's a smooth ride, and an even smoother process of finding our apartment. We all take about 20 minutes to settle in, then it's back to the grind. As I write this, I haven't even showered or brushed my teeth yet due to the countless work tasks I must attend to along with the thousands of business-related thoughts and ideas running through my mind that I want to act upon right here, right now. These days, I so often find myself thinking, “If only there were more hours in a day.” I want to execute each and every plan I've devised, nourish all my brainchildren, and reach all aspirations I've set to achieve. I want the world...and I want it all now.