The New Zealand plan is something I’ve been saying since 2018. What was once a goal to get some job utilizing my degree in New Zealand, or fail and write a cautionary tale to students? Turned into a plan to get residency and an MBA. Taking it a step further, I wanted to go to Antarctica with a purpose beyond tourism.
Originally, I wanted to work at a University so I could bullshit on my resume that I applied my degree; because I’m working on campus, I must be using it. Then my focus became gaining a transferable skill so I could work on a research vessel heading to Antarctica. A University seemed like a fine place to find that kind of job.
I wanted to write an independent research paper on globalization in the Frozen Continent. Exploring the emerging sub-cultures. The growth and effects of tourism; how it benefited or hindered, the researchers, nation-states, and global conservation efforts. I wasn’t sure how to propose such a paper. I figured if I worked at a University, I’d meet people and have conversations, and figure it out. Or, I could get a job doing something, anything in Antarctica, and write the paper in my spare time.
The book was no longer going to be a cautionary tale. Instead, one of triumph and persistence. Despite having my bank hacked in Indoneasia, a terribile sickness upon returning home. Tiny setbacks while working across Canada and heartbreak in Vietnam; I would go to Antartica with a purpose.
And return with a way to use my degree. To get another degree!
Why Get A Masters When Experience Gets You Paid
While homeless in British Columbia, I realized I valued school and wanted to continue learning. I wanted specialized knowledge, and to be a credible source of information. The achievement that put me into a higher class of thought appealed to me. However, I had no idea what I wanted to specialize in. Getting another degree for the sake of getting a degree seemed frivolous to me; and while trade school and college had its appeal, I knew that path would deviate from using my degree, making the four years a waste.
The two universities on the South Island didn’t work out. Though I told myself to hold out and make the New Zealand plan work. Get sponsored, get residency. As long as we work towards going to Antarctica, getting the MBA, becoming a resident, and finding meaning in the work that we do it’s ok. Every plan requires flexibility.
2019 introduced me to the world of sales. And while Tree-planting will be the first job that I loved. Sales has become the ‘day-job’ skill I want to master. At least I thought it would be. Loving the idea of commission I held out for weeks in Dunedin, seeking a higher level sales job. I bombed my one shot, and after three weeks of temping, I realized that time was being wasted so I left for Christchurch.
The Gateway to Antartica.
And Then Shit Went Side Ways
On my second day in the city, I had an interview for a job. I biked back to the hostel, and a crying German girl told me Alert level 4 had been declared. I had 48 hours to figure out my flight home.
Unlike her, and many others in my hostel. I chose to stay.
I’ve gone broke from COVID. Holding out, doing my best to make my commission sales jobs work out has put me in debt. The promise of sponsorship, and running a travel team was the carrot on the stick to make me hold out for weeks. Working 6/1s, 6hours a day, for sometimes as little as 80$ A WEEK. It was always technicalities… That’s why the company wouldn’t pay me for my sales. My confidence dropped, and I fell into a depression. But no one else wanted to hire a foreigner without a car.
I can’t afford to leave the city I’m in. I’ve asked for too much from those who opted to help me, exhausting my external resources. The temp agencies have all told me they’re only hiring local, as they need to help Kiwi’s first. I didn’t see a value in working on a farm, but I hardly see value in being caught in the rat-race I find myself in. Working for hours, barely able to afford rent.
My Greatest Fear Came True. The Rat-Race
Three months of work. No new skills, no new memories. Nothing but defeat and a loss of confidence. I didn’t even save anything, because I’ve sucked at selling. The sob story could go on for hours, but it would be just another COVID sob story.
Everyone tells me I’m lucky. Lucky to be a traveler during the COVID times. Lucky to be in New Zealand, lucky to have my health, lucky to have a job.
Those same people get stimulus cheques. They have friends nearby, who on their timezones. They have vehicles… The list goes on.
All I can do is try again. I’ve still got 5 months on my visa. I have a new job, commission-based, but It’s not working out.
I spent close to a year saving and preparing for the New Zealand plan, and things have fallen apart. Once again, it seems i have tasted failure. But unlike last time I failed HARD. I will be persistent in my goals. Will I stick to sales? I don’t know. I don’t think so. People buy, but door-knocking has shown me just how many are losing their jobs and livelihoods.
The economy is crashing, and so is my enthusiasm. But I’ll push on. For if this blog’s been anything, its been a daily diary of my journey to success. And what an exciting time to start reading. A time when I’m on the cusp of piecing myself back together or collapsing completely.
I’ll keep you guys updated on the New Zealand plan weekly. It’ll hold me accountable to staying focused.