We’re Having a Baby!

We're having a baby!

If you’re on my mailing list, you’ll already know that Motoko and I are having a baby. He’s only about six weeks away now. That will obviously bring some big changes. After 15 years of marriage, here are some of thoughts on our new lifestyle. I really like whether everything is going so far.

I am Canadian

We’ve decided to deliver the baby in Canada. Before and after the delivery we’ll need to have regular doctor visits and some stability in our lives.

We were considering Hungary, Japan and Thailand, but Canada was the clear winner. Our first two checkups were with a great doctor in Budapest, but it made more sense to go to Calgary. My immediately family is all here and everyone speaks reasonably good English. 🙂

We’ve tried medical services in about half a dozen countries, Canada is the best by far. All doctor visits are 100% covered by our free health care system and the quality and service are first rate.

Many Canadians complain about the long wait times, but I’d suggest they try other countries to see just how good they have it. Winters can be long and cold, but Canada is a pretty amazing country.

Our First Home Base in 5 Years

We’re super excited to have our first full-time flat in a long, long time. It’s really nice to have our own place and it’s right downtown in my favourite area of Calgary.

I can’t say that Calgary is the best city in the world, but it is home. There is a burgeoning arts and culture scene that I’m excited to be part of and the economy is absolutely booming.

There is so much work and business that it’s easy to forget how much suffering is happening in most countries around the world. I’m certainly grateful for all my good fortune.

When Digital Nomads Grow Up

We definitely miss our travelling lifestyle and hope to meet up with some of our international friends soon, but for now, we are very happy to have some stability in our lives.

We’ve committed to living in Calgary for at least a couple of years. I’ll still need to visit to Japan every year to keep my permanent residency and we also have a wedding to go to next year in Hungary.  Hopefully, we’ll have time to fit all that in.

Once we know the baby is healthy we’ll re-evaluate our options, but for now I’m a Calgarian again.

John’s Note:

Most long-term travellers and digital nomads tend to be single males in their twenties, it’s going to be interesting to see how all those people I’ve met around the world transition to marriage and families. I think most will probably stay single because it’s difficult to find the right person for this type of lifestyle. I got very lucky.

Triple the Living Costs

Calgary is a very expensive city. Our living costs here are triple that of Thailand and more than double that of Hungary. That means I need to earn more money. Most of my work has been volunteer over the past several years, so now I’ve had to get more serious about work.

I’ve taken a part-time business development position with a local non-profit music group that I absolutely love. It’s an opportunity to work with musicians on a lot of interesting and creative projects.

I’ve also started a partnership with a local marketing agency.  So far, this work is also going really well.

Calgary is an extremely wealthy city so it’s quite easy to make a good living here. It’s far easier to sell high-end services to local clients than to slug it out online. I probably should have done this a long time ago.

I Lied

I have to take back my words on something important to me. I said, on many occasions, that I’d never own a car again.

I guess I should never say never. A pregnant wife and an imminent baby have the ability to change even my mind. 🙂

Having a vehicle sure makes our lives easier right now. I bought a small, used car to minimize my environmental footprint, but I am driving daily. In fact, I don’t think I’ve cycled at all in the last month. That has to change soon.

The End of JetSetCitizen

I’ve been hinting at ending this website for a long time. That time is coming soon.

I think the way most people travel is destructive to the planet and local cultures. I stopped the digital nomad interviews long ago for exactly this reason. Those of us fortunate to live in richer countries, need to do more to alleviate some of the poverty and suffering around the world. Travel can be rewarding but it’s definitely not enough.

I’m working on a new website to focus on social entrepreneurs bringing positive change in the world. I’ll write about this again in the near future.

Life is Great

Overall our life is fantastic. I’m still doing exactly what I want to do, but now I have to be more focused on the new life we are bringing into the world. I’ve been selfish for long enough. 🙂 I’m a little afraid about all the uncertainty of taking care of a new life, but I’m definitely excited as well.

It’s pretty amazing to see that new life developing in my wife’s body. It has helped me realize just how precious and valuable every life is.

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My name is John Bardos. My wife and I gave up our business, house and possessions in Japan to search for more meaning and fulfillment in our lives. We've discovered that a satisfying life is about rich experiences, quality relationships and meaningful contribution, NOT consumption.

12 Responses to We’re Having a Baby!

  1. janet says:

    John, I feel the same way about travel and the digital nomad lifestyle. It feels to self-serving whereas more can be done with the cultures we visit and in social entrepreneurship. It’s definitely the way to go, and the way I’d like to head as well (while still traveling, but perhaps with a homebase). I’m a bit jealous you’re Canadian. 😉 But living in Portland, OR again for awhile isn’t so bad either. I look forward to following your future endeavors and congrats on this new chapter of life!!

  2. Wietske says:

    Wow!! How exciting for the both of you!! Good luck to Motoko and enjoy the ride.
    Love from Holland 😉
    Xx

  3. Great post John and I am very happy for both of you! You won’t believe but I was sure you would have this change in your life. I have that ability to sense upcoming things. So all the time meeting you guys I felt that a baby is coming soon. Actually a few weeks before you sent that email I was looking at your photos on Facebook and for some reason had a thought: “Motoko must be pregnant right now, can’t believe she is not”. I got surprise by that thought, but then in some time after that we had got the email from you 🙂
    Anyway, congratulations and wishing you both happiness and lots of health for the baby and his mother 🙂

  4. Audrey says:

    Congratulations to you both! Sounds like you are embarking on the most exciting adventure and journey of all.

    I am also looking forward to the new site focused on social entrepreneurs. While I still believe in travel to break down boundaries and fears, the consumption/collection oriented style of travel be detrimental to everyone involved.

  5. Cody says:

    congratulations to you both! miss you (I’m back here in CM but no John and Motoko now)

    • John says:

      Hi Cody,

      Thanks for the message. We are jealous that you are in CM, but also happy to be delivering the baby in Canada.

      When are you coming to visit?

  6. Congrats to you both!

    We are just a few months behind you, expecting in April 😀

    Good luck!

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