Introducing Remote Year's latest 4-month itinerary: Saudade.
When choosing a work and travel program, there are many factors to consider. First, the destinations, then, the unique cultural events and festivals that you’ll get to take part in based on each program’s specific timing.
Then, there is the factor of fate.
Each program has its own direction, its own heart and message that strikes a chord in potential participants. It draws in those who feel a keen sense of connection with its theme, and repels those who don’t get the point. Some may say that luck is involved in the discovery of an opportunity that seems to have heard your inner wishes - we like to think it’s something a bit more intentional.
On Remote Year Saudade, this underlying theme is about a ceaseless searching for something that may not even exist, something that fills the void that has always felt unfillable. Fortunately, those who join this 4-month program that travels throughout Europe and Africa won’t have to continue their search alone.
Saudade is a Portuguese word that is nearly untranslatable in English. It symbolizes a part of the Portuguese psyche, a feeling that is embedded in the souls of those who speak the language. Our best attempt at a translation is: a longing for something that does not exist, a feeling of nostalgia for something that hasn’t happened… yet. As this program spends a month of its time in one of Portugal’s most beautiful cities, Lisbon, the name seemed only fitting.
This program was created for those who have experienced that feeling that something is missing, but haven’t been able to say exactly what they’re lacking. It is for the restless, the confused, the concerned, and the hopeful - those looking for an opportunity to take their feeling of saudade and turn it into an opportunity for growth and change.
In every city this summer, you’ll find the answers to the complex questions that you’ve been asking yourself - and stumble upon a few new queries to consider. You’ll see that, although you’ll never lose that signature wistfulness that you feel in your heart, it’s okay to set it aside for moments of world-shifting, boundary-breaking, fully-present action.
On Remote Year Saudade, you’ll spend four months living and working remotely in Europe and Africa, exploring your inner motivations, seeking out new experiences, and creating memories that will give you real reasons to be nostalgic.
The first place that will stir your heart is Split, a stunningly beautiful city by the sea. This is the spot where you will take the first steps in your journey, a city that will force you to slow down and see things the local way. Your naturally-harried tendencies will meet their match in centuries-old buildings that beckon you to stop, look up, and appreciate the way that time doesn’t stop for anyone, that this life is too short to miss out on even a moment of bliss. Spend your days in the Remote Year-designed workspace, and your lunch hours in the waves of the Adriatic. This is the life that you’ve been missing.
Next, you’ll travel to Lisbon, the city that gave your program its name. Here, you’ll become immersed in a wonderful mix of tradition and innovation, and experience a musical twist on the concept of saudade for yourself if you choose. Embrace the warm sunshine, the positive vibe of this city, and its iconic beaches - this is the start of the European summer, and you’re in the perfect place to experience it to its fullest. When you’re not hitting the surf and sand, make some time to experience a local festival honoring a popular saint. These events take place throughout the month of June, and your participation is a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence
Then, on to Valencia, a shining Spanish city that will fill you creatively, gastronomically, and energetically. You’ll bike through breathtaking parks and beautifully-planned community spaces to get to the workspace, then embrace the tradition of the siesta when you’re feeling a midday dip in energy. When it’s time to close your laptop, you’ll hit the beach with your travel family (your “tramily”) to enjoy the sunset, then sip wine late into the night, passing around tapas and discussing life’s larger themes. Why are we here? Who do we want to become? The dying art of conversation revitalized when you embrace your connection to these people in this moment. A sense of community is no longer something you’ll have to search for.
Finally, you’ll find your home in Cape Town, the Mother City. It’s an incredible place for self-reflection, as the city itself is wrestling with its own complex history. Here, you’ll meet people who are full of hope, a capacity for forgiveness, and an openness to change. Take on their perspective as you stand atop a mountain, having scaled it with your support system at your side, or in a township, after having helped paint a community center. Consider the ways in which these past few months have changed you. Are you stronger? More relaxed? Cape Town has a way of cementing itself in your heart, so although you may leave it behind, its lessons will stay with you far beyond your final braai.
Are you ready to find what you’ve been longing for on Remote Year Saudade? This is where your journey begins.
Remote Year Saudade launches on April 28, 2019 and runs through August 24, 2019.