Consider this required reading for anyone dreaming of escaping the 40 hour working week.

Every morning, many of us battle our way through the morning commute, to sit in an airconditioned office with horrible lighting for 10 hours, only to come home and repeat the next day. My day, however, started next to a river bed on the mid-north Coast of New South Wales, Australia with birds singing and only 7 glorious steps from the bed to the office.

A few months ago, I was living in the constant hustle and bustle of Sydney.


My partner Tom and I, were in the middle of launching our online handmade marketplace Kargow, when our landlord hit us with a rent increase. It’s fair to say that tensions were pretty high! Sydney can be pricey at the best of times and with both of us working on the business full-time, it just wasn’t feasible.

So we set off on a soul searching bush walk to clear our heads.


Halfway through the walk, the fresh air got to our heads as we realised, we really didn’t need to be in Sydney to work. The next day we gave our notice, sold all our belongings on Gumtree and three weeks late,r we were the proud owners of a 1997 Toyota Coaster!

It was a spur of the moment decision that had been building for a long time. Three years ago when I first met Tom, he had big dreams of buying a bus and travelling around Australia. I was in love with the idea. We’d both done a lot of overseas travel, but hadn’t seen a lot of our own country.

Finally it was time to take the jump!


It took a couple of months, a few cases of beer, and a lot of help from friends and family but we kitted out the bus to feel like home. We put in a shiny new kitchen, office area, double bed and bathroom (including a hot shower). The best part? We live completely off grid. Our computers, fridge and lights are all run from our solar panels. No more pricey electricity bills!

Even though we have only been on the road for a short while, we both agree that the the biggest improvement has been the quality of life. Being out of the city and in nature has instantly reduced our stress levels. Each morning we work five or six hours straight and get more done than we used to in an eight hour day. Some days we work in the morning, others we work in the evening. The flexibility sure beats the 40 hour working week.

The most unexpected but incredible part, has been the amazing community we have joined.


There are so many travellers out there willing to share their story and help you out. Just the other weekend we ducked to a small country pub and met the publican. He introduced us to a few friends who took us out on their houseboat! We spent the day just floating, drinking and jet-skiing. The people you meet are incredible.

We plan to spend the next year making our way around Australia and running our business from our four wheeled home. I feel incredibly lucky that we have built a business that allows us to travel and that I have found someone to go on this adventure with. What next after this? We hope to do the same across parts of the US and Canada.

It isn’t always easy making a change, but it is certainly more rewarding. If you sitting in an office wondering what’s next, my advice? Take the jump!

Catherine Coomans

Catherine Coomans

Catherine Coomans at Kargow
Catherine Coomans is the co-founder of Kargow, acreative community is driven by one belief - handmade is better.
Catherine Coomans

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