69 days… I can’t believe we’ve lived in Thailand for 69 days. Boy, how time has flown by. We spent months preparing for this, packing, planning, researching and now we’ve been here for over two months. I really do love living in Thailand. Jeff and I had a good life back in California, however working 50 hours a week in an office didn’t suit us. We wanted to see the world and tell the stories the world has to offer. As photographers, we had held our breath for so long that one day we would get the right job allowing us to tell stories and take photos to show the rest of the world. Finally we had waited long enough. If you wait for someone to hand you want you want in life you’ll never be happy. That’s why we decided to move. Why wait when we could just move and make our dreams come true. Over two months and no regrets later I couldn’t be happier. I find myself happier and healthier even though the road hasn’t been perfect.
For me this move has pushed me to become the person I always wanted to be. Its been hard to get up everyday and even though I’m here with my soul mate and best friend I still find myself feeling alone. I miss my family, my friends and the familiarity of home.
The first few weeks were full of excitement and a yearning to explore, yet I found myself struggling to get out of bed in the morning. Everything was so different. I couldn’t just hop in my car and go explore. Oh and the heat. My whole life I’ve been spoiled by the perfect Southern California weather and despite what most people think, California isn’t that warm, but in Thailand it’s extremely humid. The humidity was depressing. It made it harder to want to go outside.
Now, nearly 70-days later, I feel like I’m finally over that hump. The heat no longer keeps me inside and I want to explore and live. Although I’m homesick, I’m incredibly grateful to be here. I get to live a life that most people dream of and I’m fortunate enough to do it with my best friend. We’ll be going home for Christmas and knowing we’ll be going back to visit helps me push through the feeling of missing home. I know all my friends and family will be there and soon we will have visitors!
As a maturing women, Marina has dedicated her life to travel and new experiences. After working a 9-5 cubical lifestyle, Marina sold everything she owned, left her job and begun a new life with her boyfriend and travel companion, Jeff Johns. Together they relocated to Phuket, Thailand and founded Latitude 34 in which they seek to share their alternative lifestyle with the world.
Marina is a Visual Journalism graduate of Brooks Institute of Photography where she studied photography, videography and ultimately caught the travel bug. Through creating several international documentaries, Marina realized there was more to the world than work and wanted something more.