Hi, my name is Rob and welcome to my blog about business, daily life and travel. Think of it as the perfect combination of work and pleasure, the way life should be.

Being one of the original “digital nomads” for lack of better words, I’ve been living and earning abroad for over a decade. I’ve always been a fan of business, internet marketing and living in tropical locations.

Besides business, I’m also very interested in everything to do with in and around the home. I’ve built two homes from scratch and can appreciate a home at a whole new level after being nomadic for so long.

These days, I’m living in Bali working for myself and running some real estate projects in the Caribbean off the coast of Nicaragua. Life is what you make of it having a business makes the dream work.

Wherever you live, daily life is roughly the same when you get right down to it. I’ve left a category there for talk about in and around the home, thoughts, tips and tricks relevant to all of us.

Hopefully you’ll find the information on this blog useful and entertaining.

91 thoughts on “About SHABL

  1. Hey Rob,

    I’m so glad that I had the opportunity to catch at the bar the other night ! Thanks for some great moments, you are a ‘one of a kind’ dude !

    I hope and believe that people will be inspired by you.

    But dude, at first we have to survive the full moon party.. I’ll catch you on the flipside!! πŸ™‚

    / Mr.Grandt Denmark !!

  2. Hey, was your damsel in shining iphone and you, knight in no-local-credit-phone distress at fort canning. Thought your action to leave the real world was whacked up great goodness. Carry on this nomad spirit and spread the message and hopefully inspire others.

  3. Shariffah,

    Thank you for your comment and most certainly your iPhone, it was most appreciated! Signed up for couchsurfers – stophavingaboringlife is my username.

    Thanks again πŸ˜‰

  4. Rob, thanks for reading my blog. I think yours is a helluva lot more interesting than mine; I’ll be a regular reader of this for sure. You’re doing exactly what I want to do. Travel hard.

  5. You followed me on twitter, so I checked you out. And glad I did! Ride the wave, and good luck to you. I collect global nomads, wayward spirits, and other adventurous types the way some folks collect travel souvenirs. I’m going to tweet you and blog you when a moment presents itself. Cheers.

  6. Hi,

    This is a wonderful blog! It was a very good read.

    I was wondering if you would be interested in guest blogging on my blog. It is a collection of my travels and the travels of my guests. If you scan the site you can see that now almost 100% of the posts are from guests. Lately I’ve been finding many people interested in guest posting.

    Included in your post will be a link to your website using whatever anchor text or key words you wish and a description of your site (if you choose to include one.)

    My blog (onetravel.wordpress.com) receives about 1000 visitors a day and that number is steadily growing.

    So if you are interested in being a guest, please let me know.

    Send me an Email:

    Warm Regards,
    George Christodoulou
    Travel Blogger | OneTravel
    Phone: 1(212) 478-0335 ex:90098

  7. Interesting philosophies, I love how you don’t put a timeline on your travels. Looking forward to reading some more.

  8. Hi Rob,

    Came here thru Jonnyvagabond’s site.

    Travel is my passion too hence its nice to see people like you taking such actions. This is LIFE, isn’t it.

    Hope to travel myself some day.

    Bon Voyage.

    P.S. : Dont see India in your list! ?

  9. You are seriously worldly traveled. I recently went to Amsterdam for the first time. It was a desperately needed getaway. I had the time of my life. My travel companions left on time but I stayed behind for an extra week. I still didn’t want to leave but due to prior obligations I had no choice. Before that it has been years since I have traveled abroad.

    Rob, I sure like your blog. After viewing all of the interesting photos I feel like I just took a trip. Keep enjoying this one time only journey we were chosen for.

    Drew Franklin
    Austin Texas

  10. I loved your Bali article, and I was looking to do the same but just don’t know how to go about it! When I look for cheap places to stay online I find nothing, which makes sense because why would they be able to afford online publicity if they’re charging like 20 dollars a night,
    In any matter I was trying to find a way to contact you so I can get a better understanding of what exactally to do, I’ll probably be heading there in August for a month, if I really can afford it.. I was looking to save a little over a grand for there + the flight, Bali just seams amazing, and North Americian culture and society is really dampening my spirits, if you have any more advice please respond !!

  11. It’s really great to travel around the world!
    I do plan to do the same someday…. You must be having a great bunch of life!

    By the way, do visit my blog….

  12. Hi Rob,

    I’m Jeevani again from Sri Lanka, I like your blog. I’m glad I visited it. I have never been to another country & I haven’t even visited my own country in whole, only few places! I like the way you take life. You do have guts to do it. I wish you all the best! Safe journey always!

    1. I loved Sri Lanka. Take the time and visit your country, it’s one of the most diverse and beautiful in the world.

  13. Hi Rob, you say that you wanted to settle in Asia and create a web business like the one that you own? I would love to do something similar (I am a web developer, you see), and would love to hear more about how you went about it, and the type of business you do? I am going travelling soon, and would love to be able to work from anywhere so as to be able to continue travelling as long as possible with income along the way.

  14. I’ve been reading the RSS feed, and notice that you manage to move around quite easily, and with pace. I guess it comes with the experience of travelling since 2009. Ive only just started, only been moving a-month-and-a-half. I’d say dreaming up the next destination, figuring out the public transport system, and getting tickets/accomodation is the hardest part on a whim. Would love some tips. You have my email now. Cheers Rob.

    1. Flip me an email with any questions you have. Will make them into a post. Accommodation is the hardest, by hardest I mean hard to find a reasonable deal without some planning. Have been on the expensive end of the stick a few times, sadly.

  15. Just read this and had to tell you that I am also one of the people who loves Vegas but couldn’t care less about gambling. My husband and I just went there for a few days and loved it – and we never even went into a casino. It’s a fascinating place!

  16. Hi Rob!
    My husband and I had quit our jobs and begun traveling. We’ve gone through Europe and are just finishing up China. After some stops in SE Asia we will be going to Australia where we have working holiday visas. Hopefully we can find something to sustain ourselves. We had hoped to try to get some multiple income streams going but it hasnt happened so far.
    What type of business do you do?

  17. Hello Rob, my husband and I have been following your blog since 2010…We took a sabbatical and went to SE Asia, Europe and Brazil where I am from….We love your posts…you were a big inspiration….we dreamt about travelling without having to come back to work, just traveling…we love your blog….we live in Sydney, Australia…when are you going to come here??? Contact us…we would love to meet you…Verena and Rob

  18. Without being rude, may I ask roughly how much money you set off with back in 2009 and did you earn along the way?

    I have always wanted to do something like this yet always stalled when I worried about how much capital I’d need!



    1. How much I set off with is irrelevant.

      Believe 10K is minimum you’d want to really “give it a go”. Also nightlife will be your #1 money sink but provide some of your best times.

  19. Wow, it’s lovely to be able to travel and live life fully. You should include India in your plans, my country is truly incredible!

  20. Hey Rob..

    some point interesting & blog posted has good moral value.
    when you traveling to Vietnam & Indonesia again ?
    I done India trip last couple weeks & this coming Dec try to travel solo and one month. BTW, do you have FB ? would like to chat with you sometimes. Thanks.

    1. Send me an email through the contact form for further discussion. No idea when going back, big world out there and currently in C. America.

  21. Hi Rob,

    I just met you tonight with my girlfriend in Granada while playing pool…you seem like a pretty interesting guy which sparked up a conversation about potentially more travelling. I hope everything works out for you with your travels, and know that IΒ΄ll be reading what your up to. ItΒ΄s pretty cool that you went to Jamaica last week on somebody elses dime!

    1. @schaudj If traveling is something you want to do, go for it but make sure you document your adventure. So many people want to do this and there is plenty of room in the industry for anyone with a story to tell. We’re living in interesting times. Safe travels until we cross paths once more.

  22. So true, we only get one shot at this (unless you’re of Hindu belief) and I too would rather go to my grave having at least attempted to live life the way I want. My boyfriend and I are off RTW early next year and it’s great to stay inspired by reading blogs like yours, especially when fear and doubt creeps in. Cheers, look forward to reading more!

  23. GREAT BLOG- I have tweeted you AND listed you on my new BLOG under: Kickass section. Keep up the fabulous adventures & tips.

  24. You followed me on Twitter, so I thought better check you out and visit your site! I like what I see, you have a fine selection of articles going way back. I have therefore followed you on Twitter and look forward to your posts. I recognise many of the great blogs on your travel blogs page and I can recommend many of them too – a great list.

  25. thank you for this . i am 40 and i am at the same stage you were. i plan to go to bali to surf for a month this sept and take life from there .


  26. I was one who,did wait till he was 60 ( well, 59 actually). But you know, it’s never too late. Currently in New Zealand (from Canada) and loving it…..

      1. Hi! Rob,

        Greetings from Myanmar (Burma). it’s so great to know u, see ur blog and reading how u started it. I’m inspired.
        I have to say that first thing that attracted me was ‘ur blog title’. πŸ™‚
        Haven’t thorough ur blog in details, but feel so much envy u. πŸ™‚
        Hope u’ll drop to my country one day.

        Good luck on ur travels,

  27. Sometimes you just have to do it, Rob. Inspiring to come across you! My blog (www.burningthecouch.wordpress.com) stems from exactly the same sentiment…Nice work πŸ™‚ Briony

  28. hey rob,
    just peeping ur blog, looks like there’s more to read… keep walking!!

    salam from Indonesia…

  29. β€œYou’ll never know unless you go.” Amen to that. That’s what made me move to France for a while after 28 years of longing for the ex-pat life in Europe (from Toronto). Packed up all my stuff into storage so I couldn’t turn back and set in motion what eventually led (10-ish years later) to my current adventures – photographing the (tasteful) erotic subcultures of major cities for ladies (and men who are curious about how women think about that stuff). Didn’t see that gig coming!! πŸ˜‰ One small leap sets in motion major shifts; just do it. Thanks, Rob, for the Twitter follow! Good to be in touch.

    1. Thanks for the comment and I *love* hearing success stories like yours. It takes a lot of guts to leave because you have no idea what might happen. I’m finding more and more people finding jobs / professions or gigs they love that they never could have imagined – much like yours!

      Safe travels and thanks for saying hi!

  30. Hi Rob,
    Your blogs are so much of life and adventures. Would want to join up with you mate someday and continue with this epic voyage. Do get in touch when you plan of coming over to India and me will do the same if I am travelling to the same part of the world where you are. happy travelling. regards….

  31. Hey Rob,
    I seem to have come to this backwards. I recently made a decision to give up the rat race and go travelling and through researching have come across your blog. Planning on Asia for as long as my funds will last. I plan on taking in Vietnam, Cambodia, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand and possibly China. Where would you suggest I begin my trip and what time of year? Oh and I’m travelling solo.

    1. I’d leave when the weather gets crummy where you are and you’ll love that area. Start in Thailand as it’s a soft landing then make your way north and into Laos, Cambodia etc… The Thai islands are fun but more a party spot where you’ll burn your funds with people on their 1-3 month adventures.

      GOOD LUCK!

      1. Well I live in Scotland so that means any time of the year πŸ˜‰
        Thanks for the advice…I’ve got a plan now!!

  32. Hi Rob: Thx for finding me on Twitter. Glad we’re now connected.

    I left corporate live nearly 20 years ago and have been a freelance writer ever since, primarily focusing on travel, and for the past 3 years … chocolate travel. I really admire you for leaving it all behind and just hitting the road. Personal obligations prevent me from doing that, but I do hit the road every chance I get. So much chocolate to discover!

    Looking forward to reading more of your adventures. I hope you’ll drop in and read some of mine.

    1. Hi Doreen,

      Love hearing success stories from other people who just “went for it” in life and who made a living doing what they love. Glad we connected as well and safe travels and don’t eat too much chocolate!

  33. Hi Rob,

    Saw your name via Twitter, and just discovered your blog. You’ve put into words how I felt and what I did too – selling the house, leaving ‘normal’, safe life behind – and just heading off! Left the UK and now find myself on South Island, NZ, half a planet away. Stunning part of the world here. Was scary just leaving, lot of doubts… turned into best thing I’ve ever done! Its reassuring to know others feel/do the same!

  34. Hi Rob,

    Just had to write you a few words!

    Your blog just made ??me stop for a moment. A real eye-opener here I’m still at the office buried down in emails & appointments! I often dream about living the dream trough travel, but it stops there. Fun to see that there’s someone out there who dare to live out his dream. Tough made.

    Deepest respect and best regards, P.

    1. Thanks for the kind words P.

      I know how you feel and want you to know you can make the move if you want.

      That said, it will be a real brain buster as you give up security in search of more.

  35. Hi Rob! I found you through instagram and love seeing your photos there. I was born with wanderlust in my veins and the love of photography. What advice would give to those who aren’t single and have families and yet still want that sense of adventure and that “not a boring life”? Thanks!

    1. Thanks man!

      Save your money, become ruthless about it. The more ammo you have the longer you’ll last in a gun fight until hopefully you reach the “other side” which is a permanent solution. Also look around and focus on what you can do to earn income anywhere in the world…

      Figure that out and you’re golden if you have enough ammo and guts to get out the gates.

      Good luck!

  36. Hello Rob, thank you for follow me in twitter. I can believe they are so many people who feel the same as I do.
    I’ve been thinking about traveling the las six year , an finally I’m going to Africa in 30 days. The country name is Guinea Equatorial an the place Malabo. I have to said I’m a bit scared. Is not the firs time I travel, but north America and Europe is not the same as Africa . So I need some advice .

    1. Just go and be open minded but cautious and you’ll have a great time.

      Enjoy and congrats on FINALLY making the move, no looking back now!

  37. Interesting bio comments about not being able to find a blog when you started your transfer-to-travel life. In 2003, my partner and I gave up the big house, the big jobs, car, lives and travelled around the world for a year. We kept a travel site going: http://www.followsummer.com only to NOT send canned email replies to family and friends with ‘having a great time’ commentary. I guess we were blogging before there was such a term. I am currently moving the antiquated website to a wordpress doc and reliving the day to day, 2004 incredible experience. All of this igniting the writing itch that needs to be scratched again…doing some contributing writing for my buddy’s http://www.thesceneinTO.com but plan to keep up http://www.followsummer.wordpress.com. Join the ride if you like and thanks again for the twitter follow!

    1. Glad to see you’re someone from the original guard!!

      Make sure you move to your own self hosted .com and never look back my friend!

      Safe travels!

  38. Hi Rob,

    As a 17 year old my dream is to travel the world as a way of life to become a nomad. I have recently obtained an office job with hours of 9-5 and I find it such a waste of time and boring. Im really passionate about travelling and its the thing I want to do the most in life, I want to live the adventure and live life to the max. As a 17 year old do you have any advice which you could give me on travelling I would much appreciate it I think about these things everyday. I really want to make the jump next year im inpatient I could have 10k by then but if I wait till im say 19 I could have about 30k saved up. Im going to make the jump for sure I just don’t know when would be the best time to do it and how much money I should bring with me I was going to try and start a website or a blog when I start my travels for some income or even little jobs for free accommodation I was thinking of travelling cheaply like hostels and mostly travelling to Asia and South America.

    Thanks very much for reading this.


    1. First off congrats on know what you want in life, you’re ahead of the gang.

      I’d recommend you hustle and work hard doing whatever it takes until you’re 23 and have $50-100K saved up. Don’t get into all the wasteful activities of people your age but keep your eye on the prize. Better yourself, your bank account and try and learn some portable skills you can take with you anywhere.

      Then, when you do leave you’ll be free to spend 3-6 months just wandering around without a care in the world. Then, start to find places you like but better yet, the world will take you where you should go and embrace it. As for blogs, you don’t make cash on travel blogs. Some people sell theirs out but it’s a short term kinda thing.

      Look into ways to deliver value on line, learn about internet marketing etc… Do write a blog but realize it’s for fun and it may open the door to some incredible experiences…

      You’re in a good spot, keep your eye on the prize and start accumulating!

  39. I’ve been following this blog for quite some time now but I’ve only gotten to clicking the “read more” link on your “About” pane today. Hah!

    Thanks for caring to chronicle your adventures! This blog is public service for the likes of me (and perhaps for everyone, really). I look forward to more awesomeness! Have fun in Singapore!

  40. Hi Rob,
    Just wondering if you think you are ever too old to pack it all in and travel. I’m 32 now…really love reading your website and am thiking of leaving my job at the end of this year and travelling for an indefinite period…but am I too old. Seems like most backpackers are pretty young! Liam

    1. You are perfect age my friend. Most “backpackers” you think of are the stereotype gone for 6 weeks to a year and into prolific partying.

      The world is waiting as you will meet kindred spirits your age, older and younger. The world is a massive choose your own adventure. Make the choice to go then watch all the options that present and make the next choice.

      Your path will lead you to wherever it is that you are going. You just have to go. I am 33 now and it all works well; just make the decision aka ride the course.

      Let me know if you have any questions anytime and no, you are never too old.

  41. I stumbled on your blog looking for photos of the Expo Olympic train station in Lisboa, and after your nice comments of Canadians was delighted to see the photo of your Kitimat fishing trip on your “about me” page. If you are ever back on the west coast of Canada drop me a note, I host couchsurfers in Victoria BC and would love to hear a few of your travel tales in person.

    1. Adrianna,

      Right on and I have a good crew in Victoria so I will be back and definitely down for a meetup! Safe travels until then!

  42. Hey Rob,

    You are superbly genius Dude !!

    Your blog is really very much interesting ..!!!

    I also read that you have visited to Singapore and Salt grill & Sky Bar , they both are such a wonderful places… πŸ™‚

    Great Job Rob .. !!!


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