When did you stop jumping in puddles?

I was walking down the street yesterday morning on my way to breakfast at a café in Prague, and it had just started to rain a little. I pull out my umbrella and put on the hood of my jacket and think, “crap, I can’t believe it’s raining today.” I swerve to avoid puddles and duck under awnings trying to follow my GPS inconspicuously so I don’t look like a tourist. I look up from my phone and walking towards me I see a little girl skipping with her mom wearing Frozen themed rain boots and actively trying to splash in every puddle she comes across.

I could tell this little girl felt completely invincible in her Elsa and Anna rain boots. Every step was an adventure and every puddle a complete joy for her to see the ripples, feel the splash, and enjoy the wonderment of the rain. She giggled as she ran ahead of her mom through the street to find the biggest puddles.

When did I stop jumping in puddles?

Last month I sold all my worldly belongings, packed up a 40L backpack, left my perfect apartment in the North End of Boston, transitioned out of my role at NetSuite as a sales manager from a team I love, and bought a one-way ticket to Prague to join 75 other remote nomads in the adventure of a lifetime across the globe.

My friends and family have asked me if I joined a cult, if I’m taking a sabbatical, if I’m doing a service project, if I’m going back to school, or if I’m just searching for love. Maybe all of these things, maybe none of them.

Before I left I talked to my dad and expressed some concerns that I will be a different person after this, but I don’t yet know in what ways. I just know what I want will be different and that can be a scary thought, especially since I have always been an aggressive goal setter who followed my plans to an exact formula. He confidently told me that he disagreed, that I already am the person I am going to be, that my values are already instilled, and that my experiences will do some refining, but my shape is already molded. I’m not taking this trip to find myself, I am already confident in who I am. I’m taking this trip to have an adventure and reject the delayed life plan.

I’m not trying to become a Tim Ferriss disciple, I like to work and I love my company. But the 9-5 cubicle lifestyle was never for me. Sales gave me more freedom than I ever believed I could deserve so early in my career. I couldn’t have even dreamed big enough to know I wanted this new opportunity as a remote nomad, but I’m so glad I took the risk.

Today I am 2 weeks into my journey and I know there will be challenges and triumphs, but for now I’m just going to remember to jump in puddles and enjoy the simple wonderment of the world passing around me.

Kelli Lampkin

Kelli Lampkin is a writer, traveler, comedienne, and entrepreneur.

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