My name is Maricet, I am 25 from Brighton in England. Born in El Salvador. I met Max in Phnom Penh 2 and a half months ago. We are currently working together preparing to open a hostel in Siem Reap.
I have asked myself many times how we got here. Travel life is a different reality. You learn that you can do whatever you want, the possibilities are endless and whichever path you take will lead you a new and interesting venture.
I have travelled for the majority of my life, moving from country to country but based in the UK. The last stint was a 6 months backpacking adventure through South East Asia.
Opening a hostel was an idea I thought of a long time ago during a summer vacation in Nicaragua. When you travel you meet all sorts of people. The stories you hear inspire you. You develop families abroad, a mixture of travellers and locals. Sometimes you spend a week or two with them and you develop a bond that could last for a lifetime.
We all have a story, a reason we travel. A big interest of mine is hearing these stories.
Aged 24 I left the UK with a Business Management degree specialising in events. I had worked as an international account manager for a travel company called Equity for nearly 3 years. We created educational travel packages. During my time at Equity I worked closely with people who had travelled the world, most of them multilingual and every one of them had explored areas of the world I could only dream of visiting.
A big reason I am here, opening a hostel is because of my colleagues at Equity. They supported me, challenged me and encouraged me to seek even more from life. I had forgotten what it felt like to challenge myself, sometimes you become comfortable with your life and for me my life was great but I was not happy. Something was missing, a purpose, a dream.
During my travels here in Asia I met Max, someone who was also looking to challenge himself. He also wanted to open a hostel, our ideas differed but we agreed to help each other. My dream was to open something in Latin America or Hanoi. His idea was India, Mayan Mar and at one point Sri Lanka.
We kept in contact regularly sharing ideas. We spoke every day since the day we met with new ideas, keeping up with each other’s progress.
Upon my return to the UK in July I was ready to settle back into my normal life, a comfortable easy life then in a years’ time move to Costa Rica to open my first hostel.
One day I got a phone call from Max. Due to a series of unfortunate events he was unable to continue working with his business partner Ro so he asked if I would help him here in Siem Reap. He needed a new partner.
I nearly rejected the offer, I was afraid, afraid of leaving the possibility of a comfortable life in the UK however I wanted a challenge, I wanted to achieve my goals. We had similar ideas, similar motives and similar pasts. I took a chance, a leap of faith. I booked my ticket and relocated here, to Cambodia.
Our journey has been crazy, interesting, funny and at points stressful. We want to share the process with you. We want to share our story and I hope in time you will come to visit us and share your stories too.
Whatever happen in life, the good and the bad, there are always opportunities waiting for you. Anything is possible. I know this because 2 and a half months after a random encounter at a bar I am opening a hostel in Siem Reap with someone I now consider one of my closest friends.