Making it Happen!

Burlington Travel Blog

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Hey everyone!  My name is Kerrie and I’m taking a six month leave of absence from my job as an environmental consultant to travel!  Yikes!!  I leave on Oct 25th with a very flexible agenda, but a firm plan to see Hong Kong, Borneo Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand.  There will be more countries added to the list as I go, most likely at the end of the trip, but for now this is it! 

I’ve wanted to take this trip for a long time!!  Some of the countries have been on my “must see” list for over a decade, while others joined the list only a couple of years ago.  The places I will see are from a long list of countries I want and plan to visit over the course of my life.  I’ve travelled a lot all ready but still have a lot of places I want to see and experience while I still can.

So how did I get to this place?  Well it started with some big ideas.   

Everyone has that list of things that want to do before it’s too late (insert whatever  "too late" that means to you here).  My list includes visiting new places and experiencing new cultures.  Oh, let me just say, I’m a goal setter.  One of those odd people who makes lists of things they want to do, things they want to obtain or create in their life.  I post them on a bulletin board in my room and get busy getting things done.  I check in on them often and change things up when needed.  Some goals are simple: go to the gym three times a week, others are not: obtain enlightenment (!).  Two years ago I sat down again to do some soul searching.  What did I want from my life?  What did I want to accomplish in the next 5 years?  1) Buy a house, 2) Travel to a long list of countries, 3) Pay off my car, you get the idea.  I wasn’t married, had no kids, didn’t own a house (obviously), had a great job, and nothing was holding me back from living my life to the fullest.  I wanted to take advantage of my freedom instead of complaining about it.  All I needed was the ways and means.  Dreams are one thing, making them happen is another.  It requires a lot of support and let’s face it - money.  Ha!  

I looked at my budget and realized unless money grew on trees none of this was going to happen.  So I got a second job.  I’ve spent two years working days in consulting and my nights and weekends as a waitress.  It was a lot to take on.  The goals seem insurmountable at the start.  But every week I’d make progress towards saving the money I needed for one goal after another, and two amazing years later, I accomplished it all.  Bought a house with my fantastic friend Erin: took possession in Sept, paid off my car, went to south east asia and saved for this 6 month world tour.  Let’s just say I saved nearly every penny I made at that restaurant. 

So what about support?  I approached my boss at the consulting firm over 8 months ago to get his opinion on me taking a leave of absence.  I wouldn’t entertain the idea of going if it was going to jeopardize my career.  My boss was supportive and appropriately cautious.  As was I!  After a number of conversations with him, my family, other layers of authority and approval at work, the time was agreed upon, human resources had me sign the paperwork, and it was set.  They’d say goodbye to me on Oct 25th and welcome me back May 10th.  Everyone at home was supportive.  My parents, brother and sister in law, grandmother, and friends wished me a safe and happy journey. Well holy crap!   Now that dream was a reality.  It was the final goal on my list.  Now I get to focus on making the most of this opportunity.      

So here I am getting ready to go.  Balancing planning, with moving into a house, wrapping up work, and saying goodbyes.  I’m not rested and all of it seems surreal.  How it will all get done is anyone’s guess, but thankfully I have a great family, fantastic coworkers and a housemate that rivals the best of people.  This is going to be an amazing journey.  I can’t feel it in my bones.  I’m not nervous to go or to be doing it all alone.  These places are waiting for me to visit.  First stop Hong Kong…!  See you on the other side of the world…

gingerbatik says:
Great blog, congrats. Enjoy your trip and let me know if you want to meet in Christchurch New Zealand:)
Posted on: Mar 05, 2010
livelovelaugh87 says:
What kind of consulting do you do? That's what I want to get into (after my 6 month and master's) yay for serving jobs! I'm working 2 of them right now and can't wait to have Thanksgiving off on Thursday!
Posted on: Nov 24, 2009
esposabella says:
This is great and inspiring, wow...im only taking one month off and i feel freeeeee,
Posted on: Nov 24, 2009
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