Alumnus Dominic Boyd graduated in 2008 with a degree in Sport and Exercise Science and has since embarked on an exciting adventure around the globe. From meeting Ed Sheeran in an off-licence in Australia, to marshalling aircraft in New Zealand, Dominic, now 32, has travelled to multiple countries across the world. In this week’s blog, he tells us more about his experiences…
“Since leaving university, my life has been anything but mainstream. I tend to do things in an unorthodox manner. All my close friends are married with careers and children. Me? I have no children, currently no fixed abode, and I’m jobless. How did I get in into this beautiful, thrilling, mess of an adventure?
“When an opportunity arrived for me to work in India, I didn’t hesitate. The idea of learning about different cultures, being able to travel and make some money at the same time, ignited a passion in me to explore the globe.
“After about one and a half years, my working days in India came to an end, and I found myself working in recruitment, making my way up the ranks. I loved it. Helping people is truly satisfying and rewarding. However two years passed and I realised there had to be more to life.
“So in July 2012, I left for Australia – armed with no fixed plans, a one-way ticket and endless possibilities. I spent nearly a year travelling around. After working in a vineyard for three months, I spent 12 days driving to Darwin through some of the hottest and most barren lands I’ve ever been in. Not quite the 52 degrees I once worked in, but close enough. Add to that it was three blokes in a two-man camper and you can imagine the smells!
“From Darwin I moved to Sydney. I’d saved some money now so I was working for fun, not for purpose. I got a job in a bottle shop (aka an off-license). My claim to fame here is serving Ed Sheeran – a real gent!
When the year was up, I wasn’t quite ready to go home. And in my unorthodox manner, I decided to head to New Zealand via Indonesia, Singapore, and Thailand. My initial idea was to spend a winter in Queenstown snowboarding and then make my way back to the UK to start a ‘normal’ life. But by the end of winter, I realised I couldn’t do a winter season without doing a summer. That being said, I also realised I needed to reignite my recruitment career.
“With that in mind, I traded in my job with Air New Zealand. Marshalling aircraft for a day job is a lot of fun – serious but very fun! I was then offered a role in a medical recruitment agency. I intended to stay with that company for 12 months and no more. I’d not seen my family for three years and I had left the UK on good terms, so I was happy to return. And return I would. Seriously, this was it now.
“Hold up!! Add in another winter to the schedule and it was obvious that this cycle of ‘just six more months and then I’ll go home’ was blossoming into something more. The life I had created for myself in New Zealand was ticking so many boxes. I adopted the outdoor, adventuring lifestyle: I ran regularly and hiked to some of the most awe-inspiring and remote places you can imagine. I managed to meet my partner, Sira, while 19,000ft up in the air. Pretty early on we discovered our joint interests in food, fitness and travel. It became clear we had a connection and so, without realising it, I’d just signed up to another two years.
“During the next two years, Sira and I travelled around New Zealand. For us, the hardest part was living nearly 500km apart from each other. We realised that the situation wasn’t sustainable and we wanted to move forward. Europe kept on creeping into the conversations. Sira is originally from Belgium and we both felt that pull of being closer to home becoming stronger and stronger. So one day, on a plane to Fiji, I started writing a plan. I showed Sira and she smiled, and that was it, the stars aligned. We were going to travel the world again, and make our way to a new home. Wherever that may be!
“The long road home has taken us to the beautiful Coromandel, Western Australia, Hong Kong, China, Japan, and Canada. Currently we are travelling the USA, next we’ll fly to Iceland before starting the long walk along the Camino de Santiago. Right now I pinch myself. When this is all said and done, we will have made a complete circumference of the globe.
“Long-term travel definitely comes with its own set of challenges. We want to see and do it all, and we certainly want to eat it all. Luckily the budget helps to balance our food intake and activity level. Being on a tight budget means we walk pretty much everywhere. Many days we walk over 20km. To date there isn’t a single activity we have passed on or meal we’ve turned down because of budget.
“Since starting this blog post, we’ve spent six nights in Seattle, flew to San Francisco and drove along the Pacific Coast. For the last five days, we’ve been in LA/Hollywood. This place has blown me away. From visiting Disneyland, attending filming for The Late Late Show with James Corden, to hanging out at the world famous Wild Card Boxing Gym spending time with Freddie Roach (a hall of fame boxing trainer). Then there was Courtney Cox and some Youtuber I’d never heard of… But this is tinsel town after all!”
Dom and Sira are now sharing their adventures on social media. You can find their YouTube channel here.
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