2) Caribean islands are a cataclysm for your mind. Volcanic tropical islands with colonial remains everywhere. Between the wild gigantism of nature, the palette of colors, the mountains bathing in dark silk sand beaches. The intensity of the sun... I'd suggest everyone to try to visit (if you're not scared by humidity and insects of course)
 ref: the author is a friend of mine. I don’t know how they determined the relationship, but I’ve no reason to doubt the author.
Update: corroborated(?) https://www.notablebiographies.com/news/Li-Ou/Maroon-5.html
I've been living in a vehicle driving around Africa for 2.5 years now. I'm technically a resident of no country (I have not spent more than 3 months in a single country in the last 2.5 years, and in all of those I only had a tourist visa where work was strictly prohibited)
So I have no loans, and technically don't have to pay tax anywhere. I am not a citizen of the country I was previously residing in, so I have been unable to vote for 15 years, so I would say the government doesn't have much control over me. I would have to renew my passport in another 7 years, but I can do that online and just get it mailed anywhere in the world.
I suppose I do pay some bank fees, though those are more than cancelled out by interest.
I personally will run out of money and won't be able to do this forever, but I have bumped into hundreds of Germans who have more money than they could spend in 10 lifetimes, and have been driving and roaming around Africa/the entire world for 10+ years, utterly free. It's not uncommon.
 I'm http://instagram.com/theroadchoseme/
Language and culture changes are not problems, they're the very reason I travel. Once I learned enough French the West Coast of Africa was great, and English has been enough in virtually every country in the East so far. I need to learn more Swahili.
For Latin America once I learned Spanish I was set for virtually every country I drove through!
And it certainly sounds like a lot more freedom than most, but the country your van is parked in would be your "master" as well as you are subject to their laws and at the mercy of their justice system.
That's how challenging it is to be free of any hierarchy in the modern world.
> you are subject to their laws and at the mercy of their justice system.
While that's true in theory, in practice there is a hell of a lot of freedom here on the ground. It's extremely rare that I don't do something because "it's illegal" - i.e. riding on the top of a truck with no seat belt, riding a motorbike with no helmet, and basically anything else you would want to be doing.
There is a lot of personal freedom in Africa (& Latin America)
Because driving around the world only costs something around $1500 - $2000 USD /mo, any kind of "good" retirement from a first world country is a LOT more than you can ever realistically spend. You bank account will always go up.
If you're in a smaller vehicle like your Jeep I can see it being under $2000/m. The retired people in giant Unimog overland trucks can spend hundreds per month on fuel alone. Maintenance on those trucks is expensive too.
I get around 16-18 mpg in the Jeep (it's heavy). Most Overland trucks I talk to get around 12-14mpg. They are also diesel, which is cheaper in virtually every country in the world.
Maintenance can be a thing for sure, but also remember something like a big Merc truck or unimog is designed to go 200k kms easily without any real work done, where-as my Jeep is not nearly that durable.
Remember too, that $/month is almost entirely dependent on how far you drive each month, given that fuel is by far the biggest expense. If you have all the time in the world, you can drive hardly at all and just spend $1000/mo :)
If you stay parked somewhere for a long period of time sure, your costs will be low. But in that case it doesn't matter what you're living in, maintenance costs will be roughly the same.
 However the prices have increased since I last looked. A truck dealership near me used to sell them, but not for $100k+
Your master may be passive and have broad boundaries, but if you cross a boundary, they will become active and enforce their rules upon you. If you are comfortable living within the boundaries your master deems appropriate, then it can feel like there's no master, but in reality it's just the illusion of having no master. But, even the illusion of no master is still pretty impressive in this modern world.
How did you:
a) make that transition from SE to writer?
b) pack away enough money to cover expenses in between articles— or are they regular enough of a paycheck? If the latter, did you save up a nest egg prior to taking off as well?
Also— what's your plan after "the money runs out"? Back to engineering or another kind of writing?
In another post you mentioned Vancouver—is that where you're from?
I just started practicing. Writing and taking photos, blogging, etc. etc. Eventually I thought my stuff was good enough, so I started pitching magazines. I probably got 1 reply for every 20 pitches I send out.. but it's getting better now!
> b) pack away enough money to cover expenses in between articles
Yep, I saved a nest egg that I'm now spending down slowly. Some months the writing almost covers the trip - and it would if I went slower. I get asked about saving money so often I wrote an eBook about it - "Work Less To Live Your Dreams" - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01G4AL8BE/?tag=trcmyt-20
> Also— what's your plan after "the money runs out"? Back to engineering or another kind of writing?
I hope I don't have to sit at a desk ever again... but if I want to own a house or have a family, maybe it's something I'll have to do at least for a few years. I'm not sure what the future holds right now, though I'd love to build a nice cabin somewhere.
> In another post you mentioned Vancouver—is that where you're from?
Australia originally, I've been in Canada for 15 years. Whitehorse, Yukon lately which is where I'll go back to.
If you have any more questions I'm really happy to help in any way I can, I love demonstrating to others what is possible if you work really hard and set your mind to it. My email is in my profile.
I probably will have more to ask, so I’ll likely take advantage!
You must not be from the US because we're one of only a handful of countries that require you to pay tax no matter where you live. It's entirely unfair and barbaric but you can expense the taxes you pay in the foreign country if you do it right.
You can also write off some living expenses. It works out to approximately $125k/year that you can earn before you have to pay any tax. You still have to file a federal return, even if you don't owe. If you earn $150k/yr, you pay tax on the ~$25k, at the tax rate for your full salary bracket.
Source: Not a lawyer or accountant, but lived and worked overseas for three years, so have done all this.
e.g. If you live in Singapore, you end up paying a lot.
If you live in Italy or Sweden, you will never pay a dime.
Yes, those people are part of the class of ”masters”, and the money is the means by which they direct others to serve them. (Foregoing members of the “master” class have set up the mechanisms by which control can be applied, and other current members of the class spend some time supervising and directing maintenance of those mechanisms, but there are masters who just use the mechanisms without worrying about them.)
Being in the class of masters isn't the same as living in a masterless society.
Anyway, there was never a claim to a masterless society, only a free individual.
So you have to do your research and be aware. On the whole, I have felt extremely safe and welcomed. I have never experienced violence, robbery or actually anything "bad" in 2.5 years through 28 countries.
As for costs, most people driving around the world spend around $1500 USD / month for two people in a 4x4 - for absolutely everything. If you want to eat at restaurants and drink alcohol every night, more like $2000/mo.
Cost of vehicle is entirely up to you. I drove a $5000 stock Jeep from Alaska to Argentina and I have met plenty of people in $500,000 Unimogs. Both work just fine.
They also charged him money for the exchange.
Sorry you feel I am perpetuating a negative "myth." I might agree that it is a stereotype, but it is still true. This was 2 years ago.
You just confirmed it’s no myth. Not everybody is smart _all_ the time.
So it's a myth to say "solo women" is a problem.
You should say "solo stupid traveler" is a problem.
Having to find something to eat every couple of days or being at the mercy of the weather is also restricting freedom.
I think freedom is a state of mind which can be compared with "acceptance of the present". From that perspective everybody can be free. (I'm not speaking for extreme situations like sickness or imprisonment)
A person stealing your car violates your rights. The government taxing you violates your rights.
The way credit scores work in simplest terms and theory is a non-coercive way of punishing people who defraud lenders. When your score tanks and nobody will lend to you anymore so you get punished for not paying your debts without any violence happening.
If you lived in a social group, you were certainly subject to the group's rules and decisions (laws and government), including rules about contributing to the group (taxes) and most likely would end up owning favors or property to others at times (loans).
If you didn't, you would likely spend the great majority of your time trying to subsist. Well, for a few years until you got sick and then you would die. That might be true freedom to some, but not something I would choose.
It was perfectly possible to homestead in many parts of the world, and never have to answer to anyone.
It is not possible in the modern world to take some undeveloped land, claim it as your own, and make something out if it.
All land is owned by somebody these days.
Perhaps in the future when we are a truly space faring peoples, there will be room for freedom for those who chooes to be free.