In January 2017, I had an unexpected decision I made in my life. It was to move out due to unforeseen circumstances happened at home. Writing about personal stuff would turn me emotional. I’M DONE! It’s time to get out of this unhealthy environment I’ve been dealing with for how many years while at home.
Finding A Place in Cebu City
Found a place in Cebu City with my own room, shared kitchen + refrigerator, bathroom, and Wi-Fi. I paid P4,000 for the monthly rental + P4,000 for the deposit. Invited some friends to come over during my two months stay in Cebu City (from January to March). I cooked my own food although at first, I sucked at it because I had no idea how to cook. Relying too much on canned goods, bread, and instant noodles were unhealthy.
But Cebu City is boring especially with its traffic and pollution. My ideal place is to be near with nature or to the beach so that I have the time to stroll away from my laptop to cut off the grid for some time. That time, I was processing my visa for South Korea but got refused so I moved on for Boracay trip.
In Boracay, I learned to cook. When I arrived back in Cebu, I was glad to cook my own food and not rely too much on instant food. A friend of mine invited me to Siargao and I was there surfing the waves for a week. Somehow, in my mind, I wanted to make use of my passport before it expires. I found a cheap ticket to Taiwan.
Staying in Taiwan for less than 2 Months
April 3-27, 2017 – the Spring Season
I booked a round trip ticket to Taipei from Cebu for only 7 or 9 days but I ditched my flight back and decided to stay longer. A friend lives in Taipei to teach English so I asked to stay and pay half of the rent for the month. Thankful for the housemates for letting me stay and gave me ideas about Taiwan.
While in Taiwan for the month of April, I collaborated with iVideo Wi-Fi and My Taiwan Tour which I need to write about them on my blog. I spent my time working on some part-time projects online and had a side trip to Hsinchu.
Isn't it #beautiful? This tree is full of #cherryblossoms #sakura while the others lost its charm already. #yangmingshanpark #springbreak #springseason #taiwan #taipei #yangmingshanpark #itravelrox #itravelroxtaipei #itravelroxtaiwan #ivideo #ivideowifi #travelwifi #taiwanwifi #solotrip #soloTravel #solotraveler #digitalnomad
Full-time job on hold since April 10, 2017
In Taiwan, I sent a message to my Swiss client that I was in another country. He told me that I would receive my last salary on the same day. I had a panic because how can I survive in Taiwan without a salary? Although I accepted the fate that I would be no longer receiving a salary over the next few weeks, a client from Israel just sent me a message if I was available for work.
A flight back to Manila
Having a multiple entry visa to Taiwan, I am allowed to stay within 30 days. Fortunately, I found a flight back to Manila for P1,500. I received an e-mail that it was ready to pick-up my Google ads earning from the Western Union. Had my shitty days from the first week of my stay in Manila because of the grumpy guest house owner. I moved to another place through Airbnb. Was glad to found out that I needed to pay P350 for my one week of stay in a condominium because of the Airbnb Credit. While in Manila, I was able to meet my other traveler friends. Somehow, I received an email from Taitung, Taiwan and booked a round trip ticket for 27 days.
May 13 – June 9, 2017, back to Taiwan
A friend picked me up at Taoyuan Airport and had a road trip to Taipei, Hsinchu, and Yilan while taking pictures and a food trip. Took a train from Yilan to Taitung and my host family picked me up at the train station. Most of my days and weeks, I was in Taitung and had a side trip to Kaohsiung and Pingtung.
Good thing, a bike was provided while on my stay in Taitung as the bikes, scooters and motorbikes and cars are the only way to get around the area.
#Cebuanos, remember the days that in order to enjoy our #fieldtrip, we need to ride the #KAOHSIUNG #BUS? #DayCare, #Kindergarten and #Elementary days I could still remember. And finally, I'm having my own field trip in Kaohsiung, #Taiwan. Hahaha! #digitalnomad #ilovetaiwan #taiwantourism #taiwantouchedmyheart #heartofasia
How I Survived with Less Money?
I brought P14,000 with me during the Spring time in Taiwan and paid half of the rent during my stay. It’s cheaper to stay with a friend than staying in a hostel. Mostly, I spent the money on food and transportation. I found a host in Hsinchu and had no problem with the transportation. I paid the food.
When I arrived in Manila, I was almost broke. The Google ads earnings saved my ass and so was the Airbnb credit. My friend owed me some money and sent the money through PayPal. I exchanged my Taiwan Dollars to Philippine Pesos. I did my Math only how to survive my two weeks in Manila.
Booking a flight back to Taiwan was the best thing to do and I brought P8,000 with me in Taipei. With the help of a friend who picked me up at the airport and for the ride, and my host family who let me stay at their hostel/co-working space in exchange for volunteer work. I was able to work on a part-time project during my stay in Taitung. Also met a friend in Kaohsiung and Pingtung to show me around.
The BPI Glitch and asked help from friends
I was in Taiwan during the BPI glitch and read a lot of things on my Facebook newsfeed. I only had P2,000 left in my account. Totally BROKE AF because of the part-time payment got delayed.
Asked my friends to help me. Sent a message to Aicy if she could book me a flight to Palawan as I don’t want to stay longer in Manila. The flight was on sale so I don’t want to miss it. She was able to book me right away and I promised to pay her when my PayPal money arrives and go to her bank.
Jeremy sent money through PayPal as I’ll be working on his website later on. In a way, the money was a back-up if my payment has not arrived yet.
Before my flight to Manila, I asked Alieth to help me pay the extra baggage through her credit card. I was able to pay her back right away through PayPal.
Again, this won’t happen if the payment wasn’t delayed. But I am so thankful that my friends are there for me to the rescue even though I am far away from them and in a different country.
Couchsurfing in Manila
Sent a message to a host in Manila through Couchsurfing and I was glad that he was willing to host me for at least two nights. Currently staying in Makati for 3 nights before my flight to Palawan. As of this writing, I’m here at Starbucks.
Thanks to my friends for listening to my problems
Friends, thank you for listening. You know who you are. You saw me crying while I shared my problems with you. Thank you for giving me advice and on what should I do. Thank you for saving my ass when I’m in need.
Living Independently – What It Feels Like Moving Out and Living On Your Own?
When I moved out, I was able to sleep in the new place I rented in Cebu City because I moved away from toxicity. Somehow, I need to deal with paying my own shite. There were times I’ve been crying like almost every night.
I find peace when I’m alone
While I was on the train or just biking around Taipei or Taitung, I found my peace. I needed to distract my mind so taking pictures and food tripping was also another thing I am fond of doing. A new place and environment are what I need.
Meeting new people and talking to the locals
Meeting new people and talking to locals gives a smile to my face although there was a chance of lost in translation while I was in Taiwan. Kids smiling at me is a sign that I am surrounded by angels. I feel safe.
This is how I deal with stress, worry, and anxiety
Sometimes I thought that I needed a professional help. It started several years ago that I experienced waking up in the middle of the night. I wake up with a fast beating of my heart. Panic attacks. Tired of hearing loud shout or scream in the morning. A threat to hurt me by a family member. Verbal, emotional abuse and a threat are too much to handle at home. I need to run away from these problems as they tolerate it when I am around.
Identifying the real problem
I know what the real problem is. I moved out because I don’t want to tolerate the abusive behavior done by a family member. Two options were 1) to kick out that family never out of the house or 2) for me to move out so I went to the second option. I knew I am not the problem so better live without me at home.
It’s another year of a mixed emotional rollercoaster ride
Despite with all these struggles I’ve been through, I still find reasons to laugh and smile. Of course, finding ways to have a good time. Laughing at my mistakes. Finding solutions to my problems. Learned to become resilient. I say what’s on my mind and straight to the point. No pretensions. What you see is what you get.
What’s next after this?
Currently in Palawan where I am staying with a friend. I am still finding a time when can I renew my passport. No travel plans yet. But since something happened at home, I have to leave Palawan in the next few days to return to Cebu.
After being away from home for 5 months, I really don’t know what to expect.
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Roxanne is an aspiring digital nomad. A virtual assistant since October 2009. She is a hobbyist blogger, photographer and travels a lot.