Some people have itchy fingers. I have itchy travel feet. Since returning from my six-month round-the-world (RTW) trip in 2007 I’ve continued to travel in the U.S., staying on the road more than 50% of the time. I’ve been longing to strap on my backpack and head back out for another round of international travel but the timing just didn’t seem right. Last year was especially difficult; I finally had to tell the bank to take back a property I still owned in North Carolina, because I could no longer pay the mortgage. It was a gut-wrenching decision, fraught with irrational fears. After a lifetime of building up sterling credit, how would I live once it was ruined? Could I ever obtain another credit card or qualify for a car loan? Would bad credit keep a potential employer from hiring me? What if I settled down in one place – would I be able to rent an apartment? Even worse, I felt like a bad person, a lowlife, a loser. I had never even paid a bill late, much less default on a loan contract.
Things got worse. The bank decided to sue me rather than foreclose on the property. I won’t bore you with the gory details, other than to say my attorney is still battling this in court, but the whole experience has elicited yet another shift in my ever-evolving view of life. It all began in December of 2006, when I walked away from a successful career. For the previous ten years I had been selling real estate. I had no passion for the job, quite the opposite: even though I was a very talented Broker, I hated going to work every day. Deep down I knew I was selling my soul, yet I plodded along because it paid the bills and gave me the resources to travel a month each year. I never considered that it took every last day of those month-long vacations to regain my sanity, and that with each ensuing year my Continue reading