Beyond Remote : Meaningful Connections
Living in Canada means that you generally have to deal with some pretty harsh winters. Some places are worse than others but, in Montreal, it’s the real deal. Although the snow and the cold over winter make Montreal a beautiful place, the snow and cold gets old and by Christmas people are dreaming about escaping somewhere with some sunshine and heat. Sometimes it’s all you can think about when the temperature drops down too many ridiculous degrees below zero (we’re on metric) and your nostrils stick together when you take a deep breath. The struggle is real folks.
In 2016, I started working as a developer for Clevertech. Being a fully remote team comes with some inherited perks — the biggest one being the freedom to travel. Being in the middle of another harsh winter, I decided I had had enough and I made the decision to travel to Mexico for a month. A WHOLE MONTH of sunshine — I couldn’t get there fast enough.
Having been to Mexico before I knew I loved the place. I love the food. The beaches. The sunshine. The affordability. Did I mention the beaches and the sunshine? I also knew that I wanted to keep the timezone within reason so I could continue to manage availability with clients and colleagues during regular EST working hours.
When you are working for a remote company and have the freedom to travel anywhere, one thing is pretty critical. An excellent internet connection. Spotty or weak ISP was a definitely deal breaker for me. Plus it’s just super annoying.
So I did a bit of reasearch and found a place on Flipkey where I rented a private room in a big Mexican Villa that provided me with access to some amazing communal areas. Best of all, they provided two ISP options. This sealed the deal. I booked the place for a full month and bought a one way ticket South.
Working from Cancun was incredible. Knowing I didn’t have to shovel snow for a whole month was blissful. I ate amazing Mexican food, met some really good people, got some great work done (with all the ‘Vitamin D’ I was getting!), travelled around, explored and just generally laid back and recharged.
What’s next? I’m taking my younger brother who has never travelled away with me next. The plan is to take the days to work on projects and then we’ll explore together in the evenings. I’m really looking forward to that. Spending time with my brother will bring us closer and provide some amazing experiences — that’s definitely not something I could do with a traditional commuter job grinding out the nine to five day dreaming about the next vacation. Remote work isn’t for everyone but it’s definitely for me!