Trip Start Feb 24, 2009
81Trip End Ongoing
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For you to understand why Elance has become so vital in my life, I need to give a little history on how I came to love Elance.
I was the owner of a successful industrial coatings company in the United States. About two years ago on a whim, I went to Beijing, China. This sparked the old, forgotten travel bug in me. The rusty traveling wheels started turning once again. I was now looking at some extensive, future travel after retirement. That future came much sooner then anticipated.
My business partner had one of those bad home mortgages we have all read about. Combine this with his overspending and high debt, well this just spelled disaster. His solution was to take the needed money from the company. This effectively ended the partnership and put the company out of business. I liquidated all assets, paid the debt and closed up shop. After working so long and hard for the success of the company, I was devastated.
I soon discovered this nightmare would turn into a dream come true. As the liquidation process of the company was proceeding, I ran across a book called “The Four Hour Work Week”. This is where I was first introduced to Elance. This book took the travel spark and turned it into a raging inferno. Along with closing the business, I sold practically everything I owned and became a modern day vagabond.
I began my grand adventure in February of 2009, starting with India. The main purpose of India was to learn yoga and get into good physical traveling condition. You see, I had become pudgy and weak with all the long hours behind a desk. After six weeks in India came Nepal, leading to a self-guided tour of Asia. No need to go into all the travel details, you can see that on my blog.
As I traveled those four plus months, I was always on the lookout for new business ideas. Several good ideas came to mind, but nothing fit the lifestyle I wanted to live. I was changing, no longer thinking that work was something you did for fifty years, then retire and enjoy. I wanted to enjoy life now, but still needed to work and feel productive. I also required a way to fuel the fire of my travel addiction. The idea was to design my work around my life and not the other way around. Oddly, I didn’t discover the business idea till I returned to my hometown. What I am doing is still somewhat of a secret, since it is still under development. I can say the test marketing has been more successful then anticipated.
My next travel adventure was a three month trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina. I love springtime and was looking forward to it in the southern hemisphere. I knew I had a lot of work ahead, and this is where Elance became such a crucial partner. Through Elance I have been able to hire qualified professionals that helped with the developing business. If I was to do the work myself, this would take me months, if not years just to acquire the necessary skills. I have also had the good fortune of working with Elance providers who have suggested better, less expensive and more efficient ways of getting the job done. Elance has become my virtual back office. I am proof that a person can be anywhere, anyplace while developing, managing and running a business.
2010 is shaping up to be a great year. I plan on spending time with my daughter and her family in Florida. Then down to the Mexican Yucatan for the remainder of the winter. Next it is springtime in India once again. I plan on visiting friends I made on my last India trip. I also will be attending the worlds largest festival, Maha Kumbh Mela in Haridwar. Then on down to Puru for hiking the Inca Trail, leading to Machu Picchu with a new Argentinean friend. Next to Sitka, Alaska with my daughter to visit old friends and family. After this I think its back to my hometown for a couple weeks and then up to Montreal for the remainder of the summer. I am then thinking about Egypt with my father and maybe a return to China. All this while running a business with the help of Elance providers.
As far as special talents, good looks, intelligence or any other thing we think makes a person successful, I have none of these, I am just an average, ordinary guy. What I do have is the ability to hire people much smarter and more talented then me, through Elance. As Willie Nelson said "Most people have that fantasy of catching the train that whistles in the night." I caught that train. I owe this all to Elance, without them, none of this would be possible.
Darn, I wasn’t thinking, I should have had an Elance provider write this for me!