For those of you who doesn’t know my story, I spent almost 8 years being the breadwinner of the family. I supported my two younger sisters from high school to their college even though I didn’t get to have my own college diploma.
Thanks to Call Center industry in the Philippines which paid well so that helped me a lot to help. Most call center companies hire people without a college diploma as long as you can converse and comprehend in English language well. This industry taught me to be punctual at all times. One second late is late and late is not a good record and I don’t like any bad records. If you maintain a good record of attendance, quality, AHT (Average Handle Time) and a great attitude towards work and co-workers, you get rewarded by either recognition certificate, gift certificate or cash. I also learned how to be patient, how to empathize, how to sympathize and specially how to give an exceptional customer service, all over the phone or through email which I also get to apply in my daily life.
When my younger sister graduated in 2012, I felt somewhat free. When she got a job few months after, when both of my younger sisters are finally making their own money, I finally became free from the financial responsibilities I voluntarily took over for years. Then the ME time started. I work. I travel.
I first started my adventure when I went to Doha, Qatar to visit my best friend. I got a job in logistics after couple of weeks so I stayed. After almost a year, I went back home and worked again in call center for a year. I walked to and from work everyday which usually takes 30-40 minutes. I packed lunch. I resisted frequent clothes and shoes shopping. The money I saved from doing all these went to travel funds. I then quit my job in June 2014 and took off to Singapore in July where my whole backpacking started. I traveled solo for total of 10 months in Asia where I had such a wonderful experience by volunteering. I still remember how tough and fun my first farm experience was.
I didn’t want to stop exploring the world so I took a TEFL course online and I got my certificate after three months which landed me a job in my dream South America in the middle of 2015. The company paid for my roundtrip flights, visa fee and accommodation. How blessed I am that I got to work and travel within Colombia and Peru for total of 9 months. Here, I got to spend my 29th birthday on top of Machu Picchu mountain.
From South America, I went back to Singapore in April 2016, I traveled to Thailand to visit my first ever help exchange host and to India where I attended the Indian wedding of two of my good friends. I then flew back to my home country, The Philippines.
After couple weeks catching up with my family and friends, I felt my itchy feet. I felt like I gotta get out again, go somewhere again, meet new people again, make memories again. I booked a flight to Singapore, then to Malaysia and the next thing I know, I was back in Singapore again for my New Zealand tourist visa.
New Zealand is the 15th country I got to visit and I’d say it’s the most beautiful country I’ve even been SO FAR. I got to extend my visa until December 15th so I am here to explore the country for total of 6 months.
I am jobless right now but of course I have to get a paying job soon. I mainly do help exchange to keep me traveling, to meet new people and to experience the local life. Since people speak English here, teaching won’t work for me. I started doing housekeeping instead. Who likes doing household chores? I just had to do it to keep me on the road. I learned interesting and fun handy jobs though and I acquired new family and friends.
My work varies. Usually only 2-4 hours of work so I still get lots of free time to travel.
I got to feed cows.
I got my hands dirty by doing some gardening tasks.
I walked and played with dogs.
I played with my host’s kids.
I also do help exchange in hostels.
I change bed sheets. Put them in the washing machine, dryer and fold them.
I split kindling and keep the fireplace going for the cat… I mean for the guests.
I wipe surfaces, clean windows, sweep, vacuum, clean bathrooms and sometimes cook Filipino dish for my hosts. All these in exchange of food or accommodation or sometimes I get both. If I don’t get food, (mostly in hostels) I settle for instant noodles and bread but I treat myself to a good meal or ice cream once in a while. For transportation here in NZ, I sometimes hitchhike or just walk for hours to save money lol. Most of the time, my hosts are kind enough to drop me off to places and pick me up.
I go couchsurfing when I’m not volunteering. So far, I’ve got good reviews from all my hosts. 🙂
I’m not a rich kid at all. I am just blessed for having a good heart I guess. I share and give as much as I can and in return, I receive lots of blessings in so many different ways.
“Help someone not for the reward but for the sake of changing a life.”
I may not have a degree nor a lot of money but I have a lot of genuine family and friends all over the world. I have a lot of good and not so good experiences, memories. I learn from them, I treasure them, I share them. 🙂
If you truly want something, YOU make it happen.
So . . . Travel if you can. Travel when you can. Travel while you can.
I am Ryshel. 😊