Passenger Conners, Part Deux: Aw, YEAH, Location Independence

Coconut Grove
That’s no Bali retreat; that’s my new digs in the Grove.

When I returned from 8 months traveling around the globe, I immediately unpacked my backpack, settled back into a life in the Northeast, and enjoyed the simple pleasures of stationary life, which now felt like sheer decadence.

I peaced out. There were no planes to catch, no cities to explore, no backpack to unstuff and restuff with all 64 ounces of my worldly goods. That heady thrill of permanence lasted, oh, two weeks.

Suddenly, I peeked into my closet and felt nothing short of horror: why do I own all these clothes? Who wears this many shoes? Will my surroundings, my routine look relatively the same day in, day out? Yes. Yes they would. I wanted back on the road. Like, yesterday.

But, another part of me knew I was done with hardcore traveling.

I craved much-cherished time with family and friends; I wanted to work, and find a path more true to self, and learn to build a new home in a new city.

Still, beneath it all, ever-present and bubbling, was that spark of knowledge gleaned on the trip: it’s a big, beautiful world out there, filled will incredible souls, and I’m not going to see it or meet them to the degree I crave while here, at home.

And so, I plotted and planned, and wondered and hoped, and thankfully, Ayaz, my number one partner in life, love and all things awesome, felt similar.

For months we pondered, tossed half-baked ideas around until we just knew — we were going to do it; we would take off into the great, wide world we love so much.Β But this time, things would be … different.

We’ve decided to become location independent, or digital nomads, as many refer to the lifestyle. We’ll be on the road, but we’ll be working — my work is already remote, and we’ll finally have time to pursue the passions and projects that have eluded us in these past few months.

The plan is to stay in locations for longer stretches, 2 months or so at a time, immersing ourselves in places, people, cultures and lifestyles. For now, we intend to stay U.S.-based.Β First stop: Coconut Grove, Miami. Next Stop: Santa Fe.

Passenger Conners is back in business! We’re hitting the road in T minus 3 weeks, and I’ll be sharing updates and photos of the journey, my many new homes, and the towns and people we’ll be discovering along the way.

I am so thankful and so gosh darn excited to be, well, BACK.


  1. See ya on the road, chickenhead! Love, your friend in all things location independent

  2. Val –
    Can’t wait to see you in Florida.
    Momala C

  3. Aw yeeeaaah, makin da moveh. Movin n’ shakin.

    OK, I’ll stop now. πŸ™‚ Let’s try for dinner next week! Congrats on everything!

  4. Most excellent. It truly suits you.

  5. Val!!! Awesome that you’re going to be in the grove!!! It’s such a fun, cool spot to be… lots of cafes and totally walkable! I want to meet up when you are here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Valerie Conners says:

      Melyssa – do you still have my email? I would LOVE to meet up while I’m there — you’ll be my first Miami friend! πŸ™‚

      • Val, I don’t… But I’m friends with Dana in Facebook– which means I’m going to be friending you! I’m really excited for you guys to get to the grove– I can’t wait to hear about all your travels over good food and adult beverages!! πŸ™‚

  6. Oh yeah Val! I cannot wait to read and follow your newest journey – so much fun and I love to live vicariously through you until I have a bit more freedom (like in 14 years or so!) Best of luck and that pool is fantastic πŸ™‚

  7. Any chance of some fare-thee-well drinks before you go??

  8. Rhea Auerbach says:

    wishing you life’s bests always…..looking forward to your posts! xxoo Rhea

  9. You’ll love Santa Fe. Beware of those who call it Santa Fake. They’re just jealous πŸ™‚

    • Valerie Conners says:

      I LOVE Santa Fe – I can’t wait to get back and stay for a spell. You should pay a visit – we can get spa treatments and shop for turquoise baubles! πŸ™‚