Welcome to The Passport Memorandum!
Whether you’re looking for travel tips, inspiration, a new start, or photographs from around the world, we’re here for you! We’ve left our corporate offices to get some fresh air and – don’t tell anyone – but we’re probably not coming back.
Who are we?
We’re Marta and Robert, the bloggers behind The Passport Memorandum. Prior to creating this blog, we discovered that the “traditional” life we've been taught to follow as kids is just one of infinitely many options.
We both graduated from college, worked our fair share of random jobs and corporate jobs for several years, and eventually got to a point in our lives where we figured we'd both be happy. What's more, about a year before starting this blog we found even better-paying jobs – and yet we still weren’t any closer to feeling truly happy or fulfilled on a day-to-day basis.
That was the moment when reality sank in: True happiness isn’t a measure of the things you can buy.
We had come to understand that the most valuable thing we have in life is time, and we didn’t want to spend our best years not being fully in control of it.
So what did we do?
Well, once we had had enough, we decided to set a date and quit our jobs. We needed time to pay off debt, save money and plan meticulously. Because, once that day came, we would be leaving our established American lifestyles and embracing the wild (and somewhat crazy) adventure of becoming full-time travel bloggers.
The Passport Memorandum
The Passport Memorandum – born of Marta's passion for traveling and planning, and Robert's love for photography and creativity – was our chance to create a new life.
To start, we've mapped out two years of traveling:
Once we take off, we'll be touching base in Norway before getting to Southeast Asia, which is what we’ll be exploring our first year. The year after, Spain and the rest of Europe. Follow us along on our journey to find out what comes after!
Meet Marta: Wanderluster, Budget Master, Addicted to travel planning
I was born and raised in Spain, in a beautiful city named Vigo. Without a clear calling for what I should do, I graduated with a degree in “Labor Relations.” Two short months after that, at the age of 22, I moved to the US.
Ever since I was a young teenager, I craved traveling. Growing up, I used all of my Christmas and birthday money, scholarship money, and any other money that I made while working and studying, to plan getaways.
Then came adulthood. Becoming an adult meant having to get a job (whether you wanted to or not), buying your a house/apartment of your own, having kids, and paying bills. Lots of bills. I never liked the idea, but what was I supposed to do?
In 2016, after three-and-a-half years in the US and seven jobs later, all of my hard work was paying off and I had objectively accomplished more than I ever had before. And yet, I still felt like something was missing.
I was tired. Tired of a monotonous life. Tired of having to choose whether to visit friends and family in Spain during my 15 annual vacation days, or to explore the world. Tired of trying to find a way to live a meaningful life from within a cubicle.
Once I reached my tipping point, I decided to start researching how I could find this “freedom” that I’d always wanted. My wanderlust made the choice easy for me: become a travel blogger, share my journey with the world, and find a way to make a living out of it.
I’ve always believed that if you want something badly enough in life, you have to work for it. This is my attempt to prove to myself and others that, if you’re willing to work and sacrifice, there are no limits to what you can do.
Meet Robert: Photographer, Tech Enthusiast, Minimalist in Training
I'm from the tropical city of Miami, Florida, where I was raised in a single-parent home with all the love and support a kid could ever want.
All of this support led me to explore a wild range of artistic interests, constantly finding something different to sink my teeth into.
So, I’ve lived many lives: I’ve at times been a musician, a dancer, a writer (mostly terrible superhero stories as a kid), a math and chess club supernerd, and a basketball player (I only won a total of two games - both by forfeit; you could say sports weren’t my thing).
Photography was the first interest that I didn’t actively seek out - I began taking photos instinctively.
Why? Well, life had a very roundabout and convoluted way of showing me two things:
- Memories, and making good ones, are all that matter throughout life – they’re all you take with you when you leave.
- My memory sucks.
As soon as I realized that, I started photographing everything I could to remember as much as possible. Eventually, I found that the act of taking and editing photographs made me intrinsically happy. Not just the digitizing of memories, but purposefully and deliberately composing photographs.
So – what about the practical version of me that paid the bills throughout the years?
I graduated with a degree in Psychology, and then promptly sank into a career in Finance for a half-decade. I had been on my own from around the time I went to college, and I was in dire need of a way to buy nice things and pay big bills. I mean, how else was I supposed to be happy?
Popular opinion seemed to dictate that the more money I made, the happier I’d be. Well… Not quite.
Because when a third (or more) of your day is unfulfilling, what could you possibly buy or do in the remaining hours to find an equilibrium – to strike a balance that leads to overall happiness? This was the equation that proved to be impossible to solve, and one that I found worth rewriting entirely.
So now here we are.
Or there, depending on when you’re reading this.
And, we’re determined to find happiness and fulfillment not through the traditional path, but on our own terms.
Above all else, we’d love to have you along for the journey. Welcome!
Marta & Robert