Yeah, it happened.
I managed to get to the great palindromic age of 33.
Some people imagine their lives as adults when they are still kids, how their lives would look like. For me, it wasn’t that. I mostly tried to make it at least 5 years into the future. After all, I couldn’t really imagine much from post-communist Romania, in a quiet corner of north-west Transylvania.
But little did I know.
Without further ado, here it goes:
- I traveled to over 30 countries. I think this year I was supposed to be up to 33, but then corona happened.
- I rode a 1700 cc Harley at sunset, near the Golden Gate bridge, in San Francisco.
- I went snowboarding for over 20 days in a season, up at Tahoe.
- I lived in London, UK, for 2 years.
- I moved far, far away from my hometown for college. Like a 12 hour train ride away, or 600km in Romania.
- I lived in Salt Lake City, UT, for a month just to snowboard and work remotely while at a crypto startup.
- I moved to San Francisco with about 2 months of runway in the bank and zero safety nets.
- I got married in a foreign country. After meeting her on a beach, at 3am, on the Romanian seaside.
- I camped in the mountains and on the beach.
- I built a website in 2009 and bought my first car with the money from it. Then decided to become a marketer.
- I graduated from an Executive MBA at 26, an age where most of my colleagues had more business experience than I had life. Also, I didn’t really know how I would eventually pay for it.
- I commuted by plane from Bucharest to London every month, for 2 years.
- Swam and snorkeled between continents in Iceland.
- Saw the northern lights, several times, also in Iceland.
- Saw the Niagara Falls while in Toronto at a decentralized identity event.
- Bought an investment property in Ohio.
- Paid $4,000 rent for a 1 bedroom. Per month.
- Earned $1.5/hour as my first real job, without a college degree, in 2009.
- Dropped out of my first college adventure in finance, banking and stock exchange.
- Finished college as a distance learner, with career switchers and high-school exam second timers. Also graduated at the same time as my wife, even though she’s almost 4 years younger than me.
- Lost money on the stock market using leveraged instruments and derivatives.
- Lost money in crypto ICOs
- Made enough money to pay that $4,000 per month rent in SF.
- Worked from home for over 10 months before we all had to. It sucked then, still sucks now.
- I organized tech and entrepreneurship meetups in London and San Francisco. Still organize them in SF, only virtually while we get rid of the virus.
- Worked in advertising, mining, consulting, food delivery, fintech, AI, crypto and identity, with vending machines, data. I’m actively interested in quantum computing, so who knows what’s next.
- Owned an Audi A1 at 23, bought with my own money.
- I surfed in the Pacific Ocean. It’s cold.
- Got laid off from a controversial gold and silver mining project and left my birth country to pursue tech.
- Won the Green Card lottery, even though when I first found out about it in 2012, i thought it was a scam. Applied a few years in a row to get it. It’s real.
- I jumped from a plane, at 30,000 ft, with a parachute.
- I traveled to Hong Kong in a business class seat with my wife, for fun.
- I started writing, again and again.
There’s a ton more things I could add here, but I’ll save some for other years. I’m sure there’s plenty more to come.
Happy birthday to me!