For the truth is that I already know as much about my fate as I need to know. The day will come when I will die. So the only matter of consequence before me is what I will do with my allotted time. I can remain on shore, paralyzed with fear, or I can raise my sails and dip and soar in the breeze.
– Richard Bode, First You Have to Row a Little Boat
Bienvenidos! We are John and Susan Pazera, residents of El Retiro, Colombia. In 2001, we took our last sail out under the Golden Gate Bridge and set off on the trip of our lives: a three-year journey down the Pacific coast and through the Panama Canal. Although that “making a living” thing has interfered in the meantime, the sailing adventure has never left us – and it’s driven a passion for travel and new experiences that informs almost every major decision we make.
And now the adventure continues. After almost a decade of “what ifs,” dreaming, and planning, we moved to the highlands of Western Panama in April 2015. We arrived there from Long Beach, California with two big dog crates, two sweet dogs, and not much more, to find out what lay around the next bend. In 2018, the four of us made another move from Panama to Colombia, the jumping-off point for our South American travels. After two years in Medellín, Colombia’s second-largest city, we’ve now relocated to the nearby town of El Retiro.
Our original decision to become expats was in the works for many years. After it came to fruition, we started this blog as our way of sharing our experience. Our hope is that you too will be inspired to jump out of your comfort zone and find the thing that floats your boat — and perhaps even plan an escape of your own!