This week’s Travel Blog interview:
Traveling 9 to 5
1. Who are you and where are you from? Caroline and Josh Eaton. Coffee addicts, wanderlusters and hot sauce connoisseurs. Most recently we lived in Chicago, and have been location independent ever since leaving in 2011.
2. Favorite thing about your hometown? Before becoming nomadic we lived in Chicago, but I think we still consider our hometown to be Carmel IN where our family is. Carmel is a great city, it was just ranked best place to live by Money Magazine last year and I think for being in Indiana suprises people. It’s clean, friendly – big enough… and still small enough.
3. #1 Reason you travel? The people we meet along the way. Some of our favorite memories surround who we were with in that location. We love the guesthouse owners, locals, and fellow travelers that you run into. Hearing others tell their own travel stories and reliving ours through story is awesome.
4. Job you left behind? Both of us were corporate 9 – 5 ers. Josh left behind a job with a big 5 consulting firm where he traveled every week… not the enjoyable fun travel 🙂 I was a personal trainer at Equinox, a job I actually loved and it was hard to leave my clients but for the experience of the past 2 years I wouldn’t trade anything.
5. What did you give up to save money for travel? Morning Starbucks Coffee, $15 cocktails in Chicago, Shopping (if it didnt fit in our backpack we didnt buy it). Ever $30 item we wanted to buy we thought, “that’s one more day we could spend in Thailand”. It’s amazing how quickly you can cut down your expenses and save a lot of money in a short amount of time if you set your priorities!
6. What kind of backpack do you carry and why? We carry an osprey 36L. We opted for carry on only. I have memories of walking 4+ miles with my little 36 L backpack, I cant imagine carrying anything larger! We were able to get it on almost every flight for the past 2 years. We mostly traveled in warm weather, so instead of packing for the month or 2 of cold weather we just bought clothes along the way and then gave them to locals when we were done with them. We didn’t travel with a lot of toiletries, just picked them up as we needed them.
7. Funniest Travel/WTF moment? Riding for 4 hours in a cabbage truck in Laos. We went to the bus station to catch the bus to 4,000 Islands as the time schedule told us to. Without really understanding what was going on we ended up climbing onto a cabbage truck with locals and getting a ride down there while sitting on straw brooms, corn husks, tomatoes, apples, ____, you name it, we were probably sitting on it or around it or it was piled on the roof. The locals were laughing at us the entire time because our big American bodies didn’t fit as comfortably on the truck as everyone else’s. We couldn’t stop laughing ourselves because every stop somehow we would pick up 10 more people with 10 more loads of fresh veggies and fruits.
8. Favorite ‘Off-the-beaten-Path’ place: Botswana. We drove ourselves through Botswana and Namibia, camping on a self drive safari for a month. It was terrifying, but more than that one of the most incredible experiences we have ever had. The star filled night sky, the herd of 40 elephants that would cross our path, the lions coming back from a kill, driving for 3 hours and not seeing a single other car… Everything about Botswana was unbelievable!
9. Your MUST HAVE(s) while on the road: Caroline – Sarong ; Josh – Mac Air
10. Laundry: Send it out or use the sink? Shower with your clothes… is that an option :)?
11. Favorite book:
12. Stay out late or get up early? Josh likes to stay up late, Caroline is more of an early riser… we compromise usually and just don’t sleep.
13. DSLR or Point & Shoot? We travel with both. I usually get my DSLR out on the big travel days, or I do a photo walk through the city and shoot everything during that one day. Typically I use my point and shoot.. but I am starting to use my phone camera more than anything now.
14. Favorite kind of Pizza: Caroline – BBQ Chicken Pizza; Josh – Pepperoni and Banana Peppers
15. What is your average daily budget? Totally depends what country we are in! In Thailand we tried to stay under $40 a day for both of us, in Rio we tried to stay under $100 a day – right now we are traveling in the US and our goal is to stay somewhere between $75 – $100 per day all Inclusive. (Eating, Sleeping, Insurance, flights, etc.)
16. How many countries have you visited? 64 Stamps in our passport