I can now feel safe in using a Sound of Music song title since I have FINALLY gotten past the age of being mistaken for Kurt von Trapp. Kurt is now a computer software analyst/designer for oil and mining companies in Seattle. I wonder if he is past the age of being recognized as Kurt von Trapp?
Unlike Kurt who moved forward from actor to fire fighter to computer software analyst, I am going back to a career I had twenty-five years ago–English teacher abroad.
Though not a particularly lucrative career choice, it is portable and one that I can do for many years. Plus it gives me flexibility to take time off between contracts and the opportunity to work in different countries–two things that are increasingly important to me.
And with several years experience as an English teacher, I have a head start when it comes to confidence that I will do the job well.
During my years as an expat, I have known people who do all sorts of jobs abroad. One of the best lists of location-independent jobs I have seen was written by Corbett Barr here.
I have also met many people who simply convinced their company to allow them to telecommute. This method of working has become easier and more seamless with the advances in VOIP, chat, video chat and real time document sharing.
Employees with jobs in accounting, finance, law and a host of others now have the tools to be able to present good arguments to their bosses that they can carry on as if they were still working in the office—but live abroad.
If you want to live and work abroad, it’s not necessary to revert to doing a job you did 25 years ago (like me) but instead keep the job you have and lessen the financial risk of making your big move overseas.
I am really enjoying being back in the classroom and am especially grateful that this job does not require me to wear lederhosen. I wonder if Kurt’s job does?