Did I Just Sell Out?

Cubicle Farm

I often talk about following your dreams and doing in life only what we want to do. I have spoken of moneyless travel and I have lived an unplanned life. I even took the time to justify why I don’t get a real job.

Last week I started a job in which I wear a tie and smart shoes. Did I just sell out on every one of my principles? Am I a massive hypocrite?

Let me explain. I am in Turkey. More specifically, I am in Istanbul, the sprawling city of fourteen million people that is over three times the size of Turkey’s capital city. I came here with the aim of living in an old and interesting city, relaxing, and earning enough money to get by on a day to day basis as I planned what to do next. I do simple things that make me happy like walking on the islands, climbing castles, brewing my own wine, and making peanut butter amongst many others. But quite simply, Istanbul is not for me. It’s too busy and it’s not the old city that I dreamed of.

Last week I started thinking that it is time to move elsewhere. Out of the blue, I found a job that offered a decent salary until the middle of June and I took it. The job was originally listed as a sub-coordinator, an organiser of teachers for an agency and it’s short contract sounded perfect. Unfortunately, in the two days between me accepting and starting the job, it changed. Turkey is a disorganised country and that is quite OK. You must learn to go with the flow and not fight it.

The first six days of my new job have involved me getting dressed into smart shoes, trousers, a shirt, and a tie, then doing nothing whatsoever. I’ve drunk tea and chatted with some friendly people, then I go home. Tomorrow I hope to have something a little more fulfilling to do.

I now take a step back and look at what I’m doing. Am I doing what I want to do?

No I’m not. But yes I am. Istanbul is not my city, thus I am doing something about it. This job will enable me to go onto something else that I feel truly passionate about. It’s a stepping stone and I am grateful for it. I am excited for what comes next.

Did I just sell out? I don’t think so.

12 Comments

  • Jamie… Fantabulous Video !… Love the animal expressions and the blowing trash bag. For me, your message of Istanbul truly came thru ! The layout of ur blog is Awesome ! I relate to many of ur thoughts & musings you write about in this blog ! For 37 years i have traveling freestyle; building treehouses, living outside, wilderness adventures, bicycle lifestyle, freeganism, sharing with children, commune living & still wonder what 2 do next in this Great beautiful mess we all live in. I dream of an Urban wilderness village where we collectively live wisely, build shelters & trust each other, creating community that speaks to the wild enlightened ones we are. Cheers fellow Traveler !

    • Thank-you, I’m glad you like the video. Your life and dreams sound quite perfect and the wilderness village is something I too hope to experience one day. I feel collective living is far more conducive to the happiness of our beings than the capitalist world we have grown to know.

  • My new job is going to be a stepping stone for me too. There’s nothing wrong with it. 😉

    • You’re right. There is only a problem if we sit stagnent and never change. Good luck with where your path leads you, I hope it is somewhere amazing.

  • i love the movie. it’s genius. love it. i use roxio- what are you using. let me guess, you’re a mac user. amazing….. can’t wait for the bicycle adventure. it suits you…

  • I hate to put a downer on things but I didn’t think I was selling out either by moving to Japan to teach but every day I strap on that suit and walk into school, a little piece of my soul dies.I continue to do so because I love the kids, but I fear I cannot do this for too long. I used to be a hitchiking vegan for god’s sake.

    • That is quite a change George. If it’s not what you want to do long term, set a date for changing it and hope that you can enjoy the kids in the meantime. That’s all I can do at this moment in time and that is providing some form of meek salvation for me.

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