Change of Plans

I was in my mid-twenties, living the bachelor life in Detroit, Michigan. I had my “dream job” in medical device sales and was living in an apartment with some of my best friends right above a bar.

I had everything I thought I ever wanted. But for some strange reason, I had a strong feeling of unfulfillment and wasn’t sure why.

I took to the internet, reading about people who used to feel the same way. Many of them dropped their whole lives in the United States and moved to a foreign country where they didn’t know anything, even the local language. This was fascinating to me because somehow they were able to adapt and completely submerse themselves in the culture.

I never traveled much, nonetheless lived in a foreign country. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that becoming an expat is exactly the crazy action I needed to do. It had to be done before I got too old, or it would be too late.

Flickr/Photo by Markus Spiske
Flickr/Photo by Markus Spiske

Why South America? I had taken some Spanish in highschool, the exchange rate was highly in my favor, and South American culture had always intrigued me. I read online that the easiest way for expats to make money was to teach English. I committed to taking an online TEFL certification course starting in June, and the first week of January I would book a one-way flight out there.

One day, my professor asked me what I was looking for in a foreign country. I told her that I wanted to be near the water in a huge exciting city, and it should have incredible food, especially seafood. She told me to forget about Buenos Aires and to go to Lima, Peru. Before then, I had never heard of Lima. I always pictured Peru filled with Incan temples and alpacas eating grass on an Andean mountain range. I took to the internet, and to my surprise Lima was exactly the place I was looking for. It was the perfect spot to start my traveling journey.

I booked a one-way flight, found a family to live with, and said my goodbyes to everyone I had ever known.

A few weeks before my flight was scheduled, a facebook post in a group called, Expat jobs in Peru caught my eye. They said they were looking for an experienced sales rep who was a native English speaker. Fitting both of those qualifications, I thought I might as well give it a shot.

I researched the company and their mission. I was pleasantly surprised to find that they were a company who were trying to connect potential hotel guests to the local culture they were traveling to. After emailing him my resume, a phone interview was scheduled with Arrivedo’s Director of Sales, Miguel Aramburu.

When I spoke with Miguel, he asked me why I would leave my life in the United States and completely relocate to a different country. I told him that traveling to a new destination wasn’t enough for me. I wanted to completely submerse myself in the culture and try my best to obtain a life as if I were a local. He told me that was their mission at Arrivedo. Shortly after, I was offered the Sales Representative position. I immediately accepted, less than a week before stepping foot in Lima.

Lima, Peru/Paul Brucker
Lima, Peru/Paul Brucker

Maybe it was simply a lucky coincidence, or maybe it was destiny.

I think it is incredibly important for us all that we live life with a sense of adventure, a will to go out of your comfort zone, and a passion to see the world. Think about what you could learn, how you can grow, and the memories to be created which will be cherished forever.

Paul Brucker
Arrivedo Sales Representative

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