Today is officially my birthday! A lot of people I know dread their day of birth, hate the fact that they’re getting older and would rather just stay in bed. Not this girl! This is my favourite day/week – that’s right, I have a birth “week” each year. A whole 7 days to celebrate me.

I love getting birthday cards, phone calls, going out for dinners, lunches and of course, drinking lots of wine with friends!

tbilisi georgia
Cheers to me on my birthday in Tbilisi, Georgia

As I creep up on the age of 30 (eeek!, I’ll be 30 next year) I get the feeling that people might be judging my lifestyle and I’ve already been given little “hints” here and there to start producing grandchildren.

With no baby in tow (or in sight) no wedding ring on my finger, no place to call home and no plan for the future, am I just being irresponsible in my old age?

jerash jordan
See, I’m responsible. I can make my own lunch! Enjoying the views of Jerash in Jordan

In my opinion, Hell No!

Nick and I may lead a very unconventional lifestyle, but who decided what is conventional? Our generation is a free-spirited one. We live for the moment, we want new and exciting things every day and we are the architects of our reality.

Why would we want to spend thousands of dollars on a wedding when we could put that money towards travelling? Why would we spend loads of cash on rings for one another that we couldn’t even wear in the countries we travel to?! We have no desire to have a mortgage and debt either. If we had a child, how would we be able to be free to do what we want, when we want? Who knows, maybe our opinions on these matters will change, but we don’t see that happening any time soon.

backpacking india
In many parts of the world, I wouldn’t feel comfortable wearing a big diamond ring

We may not be doing what typical people our age are expected to be doing by western standards, but we are loving life, loving each other and possess total freedom.

wine tasting stellenbosch
Enjoying the freedom of our life! Having a wine tasting in Stellenbosch, South Africa

So, turning 29 today isn’t all that big of a deal for me. I feel like I’ve accomplished so many things in my years of walking this earth. I may not have procreated, but I’m still a contributing member to society…well, to the travel community anyways! I’m doing what I love most, with the person I love most.

nemrut turkey
Living life the way I want…while enjoying the views from Nemrut, Turkey

This past year has been an amazing one, filled with a whole new career and adventure. I never thought I’d be living and working as an English Teacher in China, but here I am! It’s been quite a ride and I can’t wait to see what the age of 29 has in store for me…something tells me it’ll be a good year.

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

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It's My Birthday- Unconventional At 29!

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Nick Wharton and Dariece Swift are the owners and founders of Goats On The Road. Together they have been travelling and working abroad since 2008 and have more than 20 years of combined experience in online business, finance, travel and entrepreneurship. Their expert advice has been featured on the Lonely Planet, CNN Money, Business Insider,  WiseBread and Forbes and they also spoke at the World Tourism Forum in Istanbul about the business of travel blogging.

Learn more about Nick Wharton and Dariece Swift on their respective author archives on this site and on the Goats On The Road About Us Page.

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17 thoughts on “It’s My Birthday: Unconventional At 29!

  1. happy birthday love. all the best for 29! life is meant to be loved and love is meant to be celebrated, drink up and enjoy your special day/week… you are an inspiration. cannot wait to see you guys!! xoxo

  2. Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Dee, happy birthday to you…and many moooore.

    Now get up and do your happy feet dance…lol
    We know you will have a fantastic birthday week with your man.

    Love you
    Toni and Bernie

  3. Thanks Christyna!
    That’s so nice of you 🙂 I had a great day…did as you suggested and “drank up”!

    Can’t wait to see you as well! xoxo

  4. Happy birthday! And congrats on such happiness, very few seem to truly find it. 29 years young 🙂

  5. Aw, thanks guys! I had a great couple of days spent with some great friends, and of course, with Nick!


  6. Thanks my dear…and thanks for celebrating my 29 years on this earth with me 🙂


  7. Happy Belated Birthday Deez! I was thinking of you on the 26th but didn’t get a chance to write you. So glad you are loving your life and embracing getting older, I’m doing the same just in a different way. Looking forward to hearing about the next part of your adventure.
    Take care,

  8. Thanks a lot for the comment Lan!

    I agree with you, everyone can embrace life and the fact that they are getting older, it doesn’t have to be in the same way that I’m doing it. I’m so happy that you are happy as well 🙂

    Glad to have you along for our next journey…we leave in 13 days, but who’s counting?!


  9. Thanks a lot Charlie!

    I had a wonderful day/week here in China 🙂

  10. Happy Birthday Dariece 🙂 I turned 29 just a month before you did and celebrated the same way (cards, phone calls, gifts, pampering over a week) – I love birthdays. As for being ‘Convention’, following your heart is always the right way to go. Our engagement rings cost us a dollar – seriously, we didn’t want to waste money on jewellery. Instead of domesticated wedding gifts (crockery, china et al), we opted for a DSLR for our travels 🙂

  11. Cheers guys! Thanks a lot for the birthday wishes. Happy belated 29th to you too!

    I love the fact that your rings were $1, that’s amazing. I think the best wedding gift would be something to do with travel. What would you do with new dishes?! haha.

    Happy travels to you both 🙂

  12. Great blog! I think we have a very similar story. This reminds me of the blog I wrote for my 31st birthday last June.
    Keep living your dreams! You can have responsibility anytime you want it, but you can’t always have freedom. Hopefully we can meet up sometime on our travels in Asia! Take care 🙂

  13. Thanks for the kind words Kristin! I love how you said “You can have responsibility anytime you want it, but you can’t always have freedom” Great quote 🙂

    Happy travels to you!

  14. Hi Fabulous One! After reading your Facebook today, Sept 28 2014 with a reader expressing how you are Inspiring her and the above article keeps her on track, I just had to re-visit it!
    You are so Wise and Empowered! I Thank You for being so Responsible that you follow your Heart and are constantly expanding and expressing that Love… Something you and Nick show and live Happily and Courageously!
    Wishing you many more Marvelous, Miraculous “Beyond My Wildest Dreams”! Always Much Celebration of Love! >3

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