You may or may not believe it but two weeks ago was my thirtieth birthday. I can’t believe it either. I certainly don’t feel or act like I’m thirty. Though what does it mean to ‘act’ or ‘feel’ like a certain age? Are you meant to have a list of things checked of some sort of list before you are thirty? What if you haven’t done ‘those things’? And what are ‘those things!?’
For a lot of my friends who have already turned thirty already say that thirty is no different from twenty-nine. Many of my friends, myself included, aren’t married, don’t have kids, still live at home and don’t own a house or flat because of the ridiculous deposit rates for a mortgage. Forget about out right buying property, who has that kind of cash anyway?!?! As most of my cash goes on food and travel. Especially Nachos.
By the time many parents of my friends where thirty they had two or more children, nearly paid of their mortgage and were midway up their chosen career path. Today, what is expected of you at a certain age has changed dramatically from the 1980s. You will probably not have one life-long career like your parents (unless of course you are Doctor, Teacher, Lawyer etc.) and will likely have different jobs in different cities across your lifetime.
You may not own your own home until your mid or late thirties and like many European’s you may rent all your life. Being thirty means I have significant debt in the forms of student loans for both my degrees. One for a shitty degree from a shitty university and one from an excellent degree from an excellent university. My degrees are a bit like Greek Salad; some places do Greek Salad, some places do crap Greek Salad. This Greek Salad was excellent.
Society has expectations for people when they turn thirty (especially for women!). That they will want to get married, have children and settle down in normcore suburbia. Boring. As. Hell. If you ask me that is my idea of an absolute nightmare; I’m not fond of children and get anxiety when there are too many children in one place, I think the idea of being ‘normal’ and living in suburbia is a hell on earth. Although I would like to own my own house for financial security.
I plan to live in several countries (and continents) over the next few decades of my life. I might pick one place I like to live in I might pick no places I like to live in and end up living back in Ireland. Although, long term me and my partner plan to ‘test out’ several European countries for quality of life, price of living and what it can offer career wise. The countries we want to try so far include: Holland, Spain, Italy, Poland, Sweden and Australia or New Zealand. We may hate all or some of these countries after living in them for a long period of time. We may love all of them and decide to settle in the one we love best and travel to the other’s as and when we see fit.
Most of all, I want to travel like most people of my generation. I want to go everywhere and anywhere it is possible to go to. All seven continents and as many countries as possible. I want to have a portfolio career of working for museums, being a dress historian, blogger and YouTuber. I feel a career like this will enable me to travel but work simultaneously whilst travelling.
So being thirty isn’t really any different from being twenty-nine or any other age after the age of seventeen for me. I still want to travel the world, live abroad and experience as much as life can offer whilst I’m here. I had my first taste of travel when I was seventeen and traveled extensively throughout Eastern Europe. I was hooked and have travel extensively in Europe and further afield ever since. I am proud to boast that I’ve been to every country in Eastern Europe bar Croatia and Bosnia. Though that is to change this September with an extended trip to Croatia, Mostar and Sarajevo with a friend of mine.
To say that travelling, blogging, museums, friends & family, craft beer, reading etc. make up everything that is important to me is an understatement. As I get older I find the things that bring me happiness are simple things; reading a book in the bath, going out for beer with friends or simply getting on a plane to a new destination. I don’t need fancy cars or clothes (except designer Vintage of course!) to make me happy and I abhor waste and materialism that seems to be so prevalent in the blogging world. To me to have a simple life where I can eat my own body wait in gelato whilst reading a murder mystery is heaven to me! Happy Birthday to all fellow thirty year old’s this year!