2020: Year in Review

On-point appraisal of 2020 courtesy of Zombeeskness
On-point appraisal of 2020 courtesy of Zombeeskness

Oh, 2020...

Well.

2020.

What is there to say?

I don’t think many would argue that 2020 has been one of the worst years in recent memory. Between the COVID-19 pandemic and the various forms of social disruption we’ve seen, it’s been a rough one. I could go on about how travel has been affected, but that all seems pretty mundane in light of the millions of people all over the world who have been affected by the virus.

Shout Out to All My Readers!

Having said that, I would still like to thank all of my readers and subscribers from this past year. I started 9 to 5 Voyager back in April 2019, so 2020 was actually my first full calendar year as a travel blogger. Despite some slowdowns in output caused by COVID-19, my readership ended up increasing dramatically in the last three months of the year. I now have a solid baseline to know what to expect for each year going forward. 

My 2020 Travels

Arnold Valley Overlook, Virginia
Arnold Valley Overlook, Virginia

Despite the lockdowns, I was able to get to 1 foreign country this year: Colombia, where I traveled for a week earlier this month. This voyage was against the wishes of many close to me, but I stubbornly couldn’t let the year slip away without seeing just one foreign country. I was very happy to find that the Colombian government took the pandemic more seriously than our own. 

Because of this barrier to international travel, I made up for it by driving extensively around the American South. You can find links to all my 2020 travels below:

Savannah, Georgia

Charleston, South Carolina

The Ocoee Scenic Byway (Tennessee)

The Blue Ridge Parkway (North Carolina and Virginia)

Ruby Falls (Tennessee)

Cincinnati, Ohio

Austin, Texas (returning home to visit family)

Richmond, Virginia

Baltimore, Maryland

Cartagena and Minca, Colombia

Los Pinos Mirador, Minca, Colombia
Los Pinos Mirador, Minca, Colombia

A New New Home

After living in the Atlanta area for a little over a year since my 2019 relocation from Austin, I decided, for a variety of reasons, that I had had enough of the ATL. It’s a cool city, one that’s more than worth visiting and even living in, if you’re in the right industry. Unfortunately, I found it extremely difficult to find long-term employment there, and plus it just wasn’t the right fit for me. So, in September 2020, I packed up my little Ford Focus one more time and headed up north to Richmond, Virginia. 

While I’ll miss the mountains being a little closer and the wide variety of nightlife options, Virginia has so far been a pretty good move for me. I’m slowly but surely getting back on my feet, and I like the layout and pace of life here much better. 

Canal Walk, Richmond, Virginia
Canal Walk, Richmond, Virginia

My YouTube Channel Takes Flight

I finally started up my YouTube channel

Back in June I broke down and purchased a DJI Mavic Mini video drone, and it’s become my new hobby. According to the app, I’ve already logged over 76 miles of flight. In the past six months I’ve managed to crash it once and have two or three heart attack-inducing near misses involving low battery power. Despite the crash, the little guy is still functioning and flying!

So far, my YouTube drone videos have accumulated 2,500 views and 40 subscribers. When you get a sec–if you haven’t already–head on over to my channel to see some of my work. If you like what to see, click the Upvote button and give me a Subscribe! I’m always looking to grow my audience. 

Expect to see many more drone videos in the future, because I really do enjoy filming and editing them a lot. At some point next year, I’ll even be adding some videos of myself reviewing travel gear!

You can see my latest drone video below:

Merch

You may have noticed that I’ve added a new tab to the top of my page: Merchandise

This part of the site is still in its infancy, as I only have one product, a 100-page Travel Journal available for purchase from Amazon. However, be sure to look out for more 9 to 5 Voyager-themed products in the future, such as hats, magnets, stickers, and more!

The Start of a Career???

While this hasn’t formally happened yet, I will be receiving my very first royalty check from this blog by the end of January 2021! At that point I will technically be a “professional” travel blogger. I know it’s not much, but it’s a start! 

This is all thanks to your readership. In return, I hope I provide quality content and inspiration for your own travels. Please, if there is anything you’d like to know or see in future articles, please do not hesitate to contact me.  

In Conclusion

I’d like to finish by saying once again that it’s your readership and feedback that help 9 to 5 Voyager to be as strong as it can be. I really do appreciate you reading my articles and letting me know what you think. While this whole entire year has pretty much been a wash, I feel positive about 2021. 

I wish everyone a very Happy New Year, best wishes, and safe travels!

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2 Responses

  1. fpdorchak says:

    You’ve done extremely well, Grasshopper, in your first full year of “professional operation”! Wishing you many more to come! You’re quite thorough, meticulous, and engaging in your posts. Keep it up, Neph!

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