Life skills I have learned while traveling

Since at the moment I’m on the stage of planning to get to know other continents than Asia, like to have a very long retreat in Italy, experience sustainable living in Switzerland, hang out with friends and family in England, go on a holiday to Playa de las Americas, I also feel there are people who can never understand why some perpetual travelers go on journeys like this.

Some people think that traveling is an expensive hobby. But not many people realize traveling and seeing the world is a great global education that you can never learn if you confine yourself in the classroom or the office cubicle. I have realized those valuable lessons and so I’m sharing with you what I have learned when you think I’m just spending unnecessary money:

Math skills. I have learned how to convert currency from Peso to Dollar to the currency of the country where I am in. I love math when I was studying in College (I suck at this subject in Elementary and High School). But to be honest, I fumble during practical applications. Traveling forces me to put theories into practice, otherwise I will be out of money if I don’t keep track of spending!

Barter and Negotiation skills. I have learned how to score cheap plane tickets and I have learned how to negotiate and haggle in the market, and even in hotels :D.. Trick is to ask different sellers selling the same product/service.. then buy from the one that is offering the cheapest price, and then haggle down more xD

Social skills. The typical traveler for many -> Western people from a rich family.. Well, I don’t belong to the bracket. If people will judge my shy and frail skinny appearance, people will find it hard to believe this wee lady has traveled solo at some point in a formerly closed country, Myanmar; or survived living in one of the poorest region in India, Kolkata, on 40+ degree weather.


grasya in the thai-burma border

I never knew what I’m capable of until I was thrown out of my comfort zone. I also thought I’m that shy frail skinny lady not capable of making any friends but hey, I checked on facebook and I’ve got friends all over the world including Tajikistan and Slovenia! What more if the Universe has granted me a gift to travel around the world ;D


christmas in India
Language skills. I have learned a bit of Italian when I lived with Italians in Tagaytay. I have learned a bit of Bangla when I lived in Kolkata. I now speak a bit of Thai since I lived in Thailand.. and now I still get confused on Karay-A/Ilonggo/Cebuano/Boholanon dialects in the Visayas region but I’m catching up on these languages.

I learned how to live the present moment. I don’t think much of events that is not under my control when I travel. It might be selfish to not think of the typhoons in the Philippines while you’re enjoying the weather in Thailand.. But sometimes, being worried is not helping. I’d rather stay calm, pray, meditate, that all will be well. And of course do the drill – the never ending fundraising and volunteering activities after every typhoon xD..

I now understand the culture and food differences of people. I understand the way that Indians like to eat with their hands even on public places. I have Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu friends and we all get along. I still try to appear that I’m not shocked when some friends drinks, smokes, I hope they do realize health is wealth.

On the other hand, I realized the value of being vegetarian and the health hazards of eating too much sweets.. And I hope my friends also understand why I point on things with my mouth. Or have to raise both of my eyebrows when agreeing. Or respond to someone who shouts – pssst!

But I also realize, even if I have learned life skills on the road and have met lots of people all over the world.. it is another challenge when you get back to the roots and re-learn everything for you to be part of your society again. Learning to reintegrate is another life skill that a person who has come back from a long journey also needs to master.

For those on the crossroads, let me know how we can help you in the transition. I may not be able to cater to your need, but I can refer you to people who is more knowledgable than me in this so called life.


antique road less traveled

For now, let’s enjoy the planning stage of travel again.. ^_^

Project Updates and plotting another long term travel

I’m not traveling at the moment.. coz I’m working hard and hustling harder. I’m preparing for another long term travel… but before that, I must make sure that once I start to travel again, our house will not get robbed, my bank will not hold my money, and people will not pop out of the blue to borrow money… then disappear when I’m on the side of the coin of being distressed *sigh*

Ok, enough negative thoughts :)))

Let’s get back to business. I’m really determined to get these baby projects to work. I think I’m diversifying too much but only thru that way I’ll be able to know which work and which does not work earlier than focusing on just one project at a time. Thank you to kind souls who have been supporting me, my sincerest gratitude to you. Please don’t make me go back and be that lady wearing high heeled branded shoes on that high rise building of a corporate company, I’m trying my best to suppressed my horns :D.. although to be honest, sometimes I miss those high heeled days.. just the dressing up, not the corporate politics :))

I still prefer to work in coffee shops, thank you.


rp_laos-with-backpack-1024x768.jpg


 

 

Enough blah, here’s the updates, if you are reading this and would like to support my sustainable lifestyle goals, please let me know how we can collaborate:

1. Grasya.com and grasya.org – All the earnings from the site are allotted for my travel funds so I can explore more homestays, stay with tribes, do community projects, create a beautiful life.

Top relevant searches for this site:
bohol transient house
things to buy in nepal
5 beautiful spots in Palawan
freebies in the Philippines
comparison of Thailand and Philippines
antique foods

Top searchers are from the Philippines, United States, India, United Arab Emirates, Australia

2. Tech projects – Once upon a time, I was paid to break database softwares but I got busy with other projects I lost this client. I will have to find clients who will pay me to break their stuff.. yes there are clients like that. I need to polish my geeky brain too to provide solutions to sites and softwares that I break. But first, i need a new laptop and a high speed internet.

3. Errand to go – The latest gig was a bunch of translation and transcription projects where I get to delegate tasks to freelancers in different parts of the Philippines. Can’t wait to get the payment so I can roll this in for more projects.

4. Mystery shopping – As a Philippines coordinator, it’s fun to work with elitists, managers and CEOs on this mystery shopping gig. It’s a good feeling when people are getting paid to window shop.. It brings me anxiety too because sometimes we have payment issues from my steady client.. This gig actually takes up a lot of time but I need to find a way to work smarter at this gig so i can focus on other projects…

5. Rental properties – I’m helping my friends rent their beautiful houses in the Philippines and Thailand. So far, a French lady went to the Tboli tribe homestay in South Cotabato and a Japanese guy went to the homestay in Leyte. Lately, I’ve added two beautiful homestay in Thailand. Ironically, I’m still preparing the homestay in Antique despite several foreign visitors who visited the place already because I have to wrestle with my clan’s belief that if you get rid of mickey/minnie mouse, they will wreck havoc in the house and eat your clothes.. traditions are crazy sometimes.

6. Online loading – I once gave this project to my niece, and it didn’t work. I transferred the project to my neighbour for her self sustainable livelihood, now she is ignoring me when I ask updates about the project.. obviously didn’t work. Need to collaborate with other people who will not ignore me once they get funding.

 

Non Monetary Revenue

I was able to travel with my mom last June in Thailand and Vietnam and most of the hotels were free courtesy of sponsors.. thank you so much <3

My other income streams that are not yet earning are my self sustainability site, online store where I promote paintings and other artworks of my friends and my online book store via Amazon.

I’ve come a long way.. and I still have a lot more to do.. It’s tiring sometimes but I’m hopeful. Ok.. now.. while I hustle, please bear with me.. Let’s look forward to brighter days.

Oh I forgot to mention my micro projects at grasya.org… i know i’m working toooOooo much, I deserve a round the world travel holiday ;)

Projects Update and celebrating my 4 years of freedom

Projects Update and celebrating my 4 years of freedom

I never thought I will survive redesigning my life so I can have freedom to have a balance life.. I’m still in progress state but to be honest, I still would like to choose this way of life and would do anything to maintain it.

Most people often wonder how I make money. I often think I’m lucky enough to be generating money while telling stories.. But I also have different jobs too, like I get paid to break stuff and I am paid to window shop so that’s an additional income ;).. Here’s a list of updates of my gigs:

 

1. Grasya.com and grasya.org – All the earnings from the site are allotted for my travel funds so I can explore more homestays, stay with tribes, do community projects, create a beautiful life.

Top relevant searches for this site:

what to do in Laguna
what to do in Antique
tagaytay trip budget
things to buy in nepal
comparison of thailand and philippines
bohol accommodation

Top searchers are from Philippines, United States, India, United Kingdom, Malaysia

2. Tech projects – at the moment, this income stream is a low earner. I got a high paying client back but only for a few days because they need someone who is onsite. Oh well, I really need to sit down and focus on this area.

3. Errand to go – Errands this past few months ranges from language translation to taking pictures of a perfume in a Mall :D… I have added 2 new admins from outside the Philippines so they can spread the project too.

4. Mystery shopping – As a Philippine coordinator, it’s fun to work with elitists, managers and CEOs on this mystery shopping gig. And delegating projects while I’m in the boondocks planting malunggay. Hope for more projects to come.

5. Rental properties – I have to let go of managing some properties of my friends sorry to those who inquired! But I was able to have a French lady visit the homestay in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato. I’m also talking to a rentapreneur about promoting a Bohol apartment too. Awesome days ahead!

6. Online loading – I transfered the project to my neighbhor for her self sustainable livelihood. Let’s see how it goes.

Non Monetary Revenue

1. Grateful for the unlimited food every fiesta in my hidden paradise in Antique. There’s fiesta almost every week in different places and I have to bail out on the last invitation due to food overload. I need to give chance to others. For those who are curious, you can check out my story about Fiesta in the Philippines.

My other income streams that are not yet earning are my language tutorial site, my self sustainability site, online store where I sell beautiful paintings, and a book where I’m featured.

 


Working on the Road small
 

 


Hard life, I know.

To be honest, income streams are not consistent and I’ve experience a lot of dry months, and it happened while I was traveling too! So you see, travel sometimes is not fun :P

But all the more, I have experienced life worth living since the day I quit my regular day job, I never experienced playing politics in the workplace or having serious bad feelings toward someone, except when I fight with my siblings but that is normal right?

I would like to share with you what I have accomplished the past 4 years of freedom:

1. I have traveled more extensively now that I have luxury of time.. in fact, I will be traveling with my mother to Thailand and Vietnam this June, thank you piso fare and discount accommodation of friends and advertisers ^_^

I can’t wait to see those beautiful countries again! And I can’t wait to meet people and eat their kind of food too… Want to meet up? Let me know. ^_^

2. I also have lots of time with family, extended family, and have learned a few skills like cooking and gardening… I still failed 3 times to produce garlic though xD

I moved away from the concrete jungle, so no stress, no pollution, no traffic, hopefully no snatchers or house burglars exists in this hidden paradise.. it is helpful that most people, despite their seemingly poor appearance, are all well fed, thank you to Mother Earth who is generously providing sustenance..

Although this does not happen everywhere. In some villages, some people do not grow their own food.. thus becomes vulnerable and hungry. This mindset needs to change.

3. I can save now even with less salary than my corporate job because I cut on transportation costs and office attires. The cost of living in places where I travel are low yet quality of living is high.. When I was living in Makati, I was spending around 500-1000 pesos a day, now the expenses is significantly reduced. Of course I would like to still have a higher salary and have this quality of living, I’m working on it thru my diversified gigs..

4. I am able to contribute to worthy causes thru grasya.org and was able to help fundraise for different organizations in Nepal, Thailand and the Philippines in collaboration with other international travel bloggers. I am actually taking a breather to these kinds of activities but I can’t help myself specially that sometimes I feel everyone is taking a breather too xD.. there’s a lot of things to do to make this world a better place.

5. I never desire to be famous. But after I quit my corporate job, I see my name on press. Well, it’s high time for simple living and frugality to be on the limelight. Cheers to coordinating luxury clients in posh malls while planting malunggay.. :D


aim high
 

It’s too early to say I’ve reached my goals but I’m happy with what is happening. And you know what, everyone can do this lifestyle too.

And I’m determined to make this kind of freedom work not just for me but for everybody…

Follow your bliss, and choose a job that you love so you will never have to work a single day in your life.

 


job quote

Project Updates and plotting my escape plan

I never learn. After encountering all possible mishaps on the road, here I am plotting my next escape plan. Hopefully this time, while I’m traveling, no one will rob our house already. I’ve been working with my community on their self sustainable livelihood so we can decrease the number of hungry people in the area.. I hope robbery will decrease too!

Hopefully this time, my ATM will work.. the last time was great timing because I needed to have a rabies checkup and my ATM don’t want to spit cash! Want more stories of my mishaps?

We try to remember the beautiful side of travel and forget the not so good stories.. I remember both :D


metrobank issue

Hopefully this time, the airplane that I’m in won’t divert back due to weather disturbance.. this happened just 2 weeks ago. Actually I’ve collected enough misadventures that I can make an ebook out of it already.. Will you buy it? :D

Hopefully this time, all my projects are working and getting profits.. except of course for grasya.org..

And since my projects are all in baby phases, I hope I’ll get a great client that will pay me enough to travel. For those interested on how I am able to live this way of life, and would like to have a similar one (without the mishaps of course), I offer travel lifestyle coaching on a pay what you want basis. Feel free to reach out at grasya (at) grasya dot com.

So what am I doing so I can maintain this way of life? Here are project updates:

1. Grasya.com and grasya.org – All the earnings from the site are allotted for my travel funds so I can explore more homestays, stay with tribes, do community projects, create a beautiful life.

Top relevant searches for this site:
tagaytay trip budget
things to buy in nepal
baking cake with sand
comparison of thailand and philippines
laguna philippines trip

Top searchers are from Philippines, United States, India, United Kingdom, Malaysia

2. Tech projects – at the moment, this income stream is a low earner. Which means I really need to sit down and focus on this area.

3. Errand to go – Since it has started, errand runners has been earning already. However, I have not earned yet xD… Guess I need to start doing some of the errands too!

4. Mystery shopping – I’ve got a steady client already yay! And beyond that, I’m actually helping people get mystery shopping gigs too yay! Hope for more projects to come.

5. Rental properties – My dad’s house in our hidden paradise is up for rent. I’m also helping my friends rent their beautiful houses too. So far, it earned a meager amount last Christmas. I’m actually giving you travel credits if you book thru airbnb. So both of us will be happy

6. Online loading – This was a play project with my niece before but she did not push it thru. So I transfered the project to my neighbhor for her self sustainable livelihood.

Non Monetary Revenue

1. I was given 2 free plane tickets last January and February courtesy of clients
2. I earned 3000 credits for a home exchange platform Trampolinn. I can give you credits too

My other income streams that are not yet earning are my language tutorial site, my self sustainability site, online store and a book where I’m featured.


Working on the Road small

Yeah, they are plenty but it’s still a long way to go to conquer my target monthly goals. I’m pretty much optimistic though, because these are my babies and I’m proud of my projects. Do you want to collaborate together?

I’ll be traveling with my mom on the mid of this year to Thailand and Vietnam. And then I’m plotting an escape plan to a new continent. I really prefer to stay in a place longer and not just point and shoot so we’ll see what the future holds. I want an authentic experience but of course sponsors are welcome every now and then.

Ok.. now.. where to go next?

Earnings report temporarily halted

Earnings report temporarily halted

And I thought I could save for a long trip in early July which I’m currently in right now.. but family expenses and emergencies always finds ways to drain my savings… Plus my cousin says our house got robbed are not very good news.

And this makes me want to not report my earnings anymore.. I really wanted to inspire people to follow their dreams and I live simply and frugally just to travel.. I don’t smoke, drink, rarely go to parties, and I live in the mountains, etc… just to save so I can travel.

But emergencies and robberies are not good omens really.. who knows what will happen next..

I’m getting horrible thoughts already @_@

Although I am inspired that other bloggers are all the way out declaring to the world how and what they are doing to live their dreams so others can get inspired too.. to think that one lives in Africa..

I’m a believer of Ubuntu and its also not right that I’m the only one benefiting from what I’m doing so I’m sharing my thoughts.. but if even if I’m trying to do good, I still get bad results after.. something is really wrong.. or maybe I’m not doing it right.

Yeah it could be my fault that instead of motivating them to follow what I’m doing, I have created a motivation to rob our house XD… I’m such a bad person.

Such a shame really, I wanted to tell people how I earn but I fear getting robbed or kidnapped.. Besides, I’m telling my earnings so people can at least do similar activities that can also fulfill dreams.. I cant really say I’m an expert and I still have a lot to learn since this is not a stable earning strategy.. For now, please bear with me, I’m frustrated too.

For those who still wants me to reveal my earning strategies, kindly email me at grasya@grasya.com