Today we have a post from my new friends Jonathon & Quinn who write the blog Life Out of the Box, enjoy!
Ten months ago I remember sitting in my cubicle looking at Rob’s experience of leaving his office job so that he could travel the world on iyashinoshigoto.info. I was especially interested in what his life was like in Nicaragua. My girlfriend Quinn and I knew that we had to move to Nicaragua so that we could pursuit our dream of starting a business that gives back to the community. Everyone thought we were crazy. Perhaps they were right. No one understood why we would give up everything we own for a dream. We didn’t fully understand it either, but we knew we had to go. We had to take the leap. So we bought a one way ticket and never looked back because we couldn’t.
There we were flying to a country neither of us had ever been to, knowing only as much as the Internet could provide, in hopes to learn Spanish and eventually start a business of our own. The trip was initially shocking. Managua at night was not a very fun place for us to be in because people everywhere targeting tourists (us) to see if they could make money. We were used to begging in San Francisco, but this was different. It was more desperate.
We eventually ended up in San Juan Del Sur where we forced ourselves to speak Spanish and further understand the beautiful culture that Nicaragua has to offer. We constantly searched for business opportunities but as a wise man once said to us before we left, “Opportunities come and go, you just have to be ready for them when they come your way.” After three months of getting used to the Nicaraguan life near the beach we decided that we needed to move out of town in search of more opportunities. We jumped on the bus to go to Granada for the night and saw a sign asking for a couple to run a hostel, bar and restaurant for a few months.
We were ready for this opportunity to save money on rent and perhaps make a little money on the side, so we signed up. We lived on the edge of a volcanic crater lake called Laguna de Apoyo. It was beautiful. We were on a spectacular piece of property that truly took our breath away. We loved it, but something was still in our stomachs telling us that we had to do more.
After being asked to extend our stay, we said goodbye to the wonderful staff and we began our search for handmade products that we could sell. We walked around rural towns, going door to door, asking locals if they could make some of the designs that we had come up with. It was a long and exhausting journey, but an amazing adventure that has made us who we are. We eventually found awesome local families that could work with us and from that point on we just made it happen. We work very hard to develop our products, as well as make sure that for every product we sell we give a product back to a child in Nicaragua and then show the buyer.
As you can imagine, it is a long process that takes a lot of work for just the two of us–but we love it. It is what we live for. We can’t think of anything more rewarding than giving children the tools to help them succeed. It’s wonderful and we love sharing it with others. So here we are. Living in Nicaragua (in large thanks to Rob’s inspirational website) and working hard to live our dream. If life’s not about following your dreams then what’s the point?
Go live your life out of the box. It’s a crazy ride but as long as it’s your dream you can’t go wrong…