Throwback 20s

Throwback 20s: How I Travel-Hacked a Trip to New England!

So every now and then when I binge read other FIRE blogs, I wonder what the heck I was doing in my 20s when they were all seemingly frugaling away their coppers.  To keep my head up and not get too bogged down with what I wasn’t doing, I decided to start this series as a gentle reminder of the adventure portfolio I was building with a FIRE twist.  So instead of bemoaning my twenties, I want to take some time to celebrate that part of The Journey! Come along! I urge you!
We’re back in The States!


I had emailed about 20 hospitals across the US for an externship when I was finishing up my degree. One responded. It was in Massachusetts in Boston. Which turned out to be a highly expensive rental market. I texted my family members and posted on Facebook for any housing leads. It took a few tries and I almost cancelled the externship because there was no way I could spend $2,000 on an apartment for a month. Finally, my cousin who was doing a graduate degree about an hour away responded that a friend of theirs was going to have a vacant apartment for two weeks in May. That solved half of my problem. A few days later, a friend from a college summer program 10 years before, responded that she would be vacating her apartment in May 2 weeks early. Praise Jesus! It literally worked out perfectly.

The commuter train from South Hamilton, Mass to Boston I think ended up costing $100/wk x 2 weeks. I gave the absent host about $100 in gift cards as a thank-you. The apartment my friend let me sublet cost me $100 as a courtesy for utilities for her roommate for allowing me to stay even though she was technically moved out. Total: $400 + a couple parking tickets ($1600 savings from advertised rentals for a month)

With a home base in Boston, I got to explore the New England coast. It was so mild in May in Massachusetts, I wanted to move there. At the time, I was living in NC and it was already boiling hot. I loved the rush of living in Boston. I loved walking and commuting. I didn’t like the dirty train but I liked being in the midst of the masses. I loved being in South Hamilton. That campus was so green and lush and quiet! I wanted to live there too. On the weekend, I visited all the states! And that rounded out my 40 states! I loved Maine! I loved Maine lobster. I loved the little island and ferry boats and the sea! I’d be graduating soon and finally having to face adult life. So I was on a pendulum between being too tired to think straight and trying to get a few little joys in before I worked my life away. That is honestly how I saw the workforce without ever articulating it.  It was a must; everybody did it…well 99% of us.


Daily trek on the commuter rail. I felt like such a grown-up!


My first accommodations in South Hamilton, Mass


View from my window…so much lush green


My externship


Seaside… I know it’s an ocean..sea sounds more romantic


Lobster roll


more romantic seaside


had enough yet?


My travel route that month


Running out of photos that I’m not in


Can’t go to Maine without having lobster


My favorite food


The sample


I know you wanted a close-up of the cup


Forget the humans, look at the blue sky!


See you next time!
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  1. That month sounds like you had loads of fun and how fab you sorted your housing to save so much money! My 20's weren't nearly as interesting, got married, already had a kid, kept on working full time, was skint!

  2. Twenties seem fun now…who knows what I thought when it was happening. I really like New England's weather in the summer though I must say. Married? I've never even had a bf! Yes, I am 34. I'm not ashamed. Meghan Markle took the last good one. 🙂

  3. She most certainly did! But you have your 6 month sabbatical to plan and look forward to (presuming Aunty doesn't scupper those plans). Maybe 3 months in 3 different places to get around the visa issue?

  4. That window has passed. After so many clicks and no real plans, I just kind of let it go. Next fantasy plan is seeing if I can't take my aunt somewhere fun…maybe UK to visit the palace? We had fun watching the wedding. But as I type this…maybe given her mobility…a cruise might be more appropriate since everything would be contained. Ugh… I get motion sick.

  5. Yeah I don't do boats either, bleugh. Mobility might not be the death knell for a UK visit. Mobility scooter would get her most places? If you stayed in central london Aunty could scoot and you could walk, wouldn't need to get the tube?

  6. Hadn't thought of a scooter. Hmmm. You make a good point. I saw some more sweeping landscapes of England the other day. ugh…maybe the grass is greener on the other side….

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