I’m leaving my job to travel the world

View of the Hudson River outside of my office in New York City. I’m going to miss this place.

I submitted my two weeks’ notice a few days ago. It feels like I’m about to plunge into a dark pit on a ramshackle roller coaster. And it’s exhilarating.

Like a lot of people, I’ve always wanted to travel the world. Back in 2012, a fresh college graduate, I taught myself to program for two reasons: 1) To build interactive books, and 2) to someday, with the financial security afforded via tech skills, buy a one-way ticket to a faraway country.

Even in 2010, during a study abroad in Buenos Aires, I craved traveling in large doses – the sense of possibility approaching a new city, knowing you could end up anywhere the next day, the sense of freedom watching the landscape from a bus or train window – whenever I’m sitting still, the desire to go somewhere is always in the back of my mind.

In other words, this moment has been more than 6 years in the making. And like a cat that finds itself escaped outside an apartment door, I initially felt paralyzed by the possibilities – it’s a lot to process.

Now, I’m planning to be abroad in a few weeks, and it’ll be the first time in my life that I have no imposed goals or obligations. Graduate high school, go to college, build a resume, get a job, pay off loans, etc. – we’re always chasing one of life’s pillars or another. So when external obligation comprises so much of what we are, what does it mean to exist beyond that?

I guess that’s the question I want to answer. Recognizing that I’m incredibly lucky – having a supportive family, living in a country with tons of opportunity, and countless other details that have allowed me to get to this point – I’m trying to make the most of it.

AltSalt has also, in one form or another, been my baby for more than 6 years. As mentioned, it’s the reason I taught myself to program in the first place. So I’m hoping to devote more time to this studio for next few months, and see where inspiration takes me.

I’ll try to write about the ups and downs as I go through them. Recently I came across a dilemma: Do I start my trip in India, or Costa Rica? I did eventually figure it out – but will save that for the next post.

About the author

Ricardo Morales

Ricardo Morales is a programmer, digital literature enthusiast, and founder of AltSalt. Perpetually stricken with wanderlust, he enjoys playing music, social dancing, and making awesome work with talented people.

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