A picture tells a thousand words… except when you have the help of a neat Instagram filter.
On March 2nd this year, South African 20-somethings Chanel and Stevo quit their jobs in advertising and quickly became the envy of thousands of people.
Their blog told stories of travels through Denmark, Sweden and Austria, their Instagram photos of beautiful destinations and breathtaking views.
It was literally picture perfect.
It also was nowhere near the full story.
In their most recent blog post, Chanel and Stevo have told of the ‘behind the scenes’ realities that they haven’t yet documented.
“It’s not all ice-creams in the sun and pretty landscapes. Noooooo. So far, I think we’ve tallied 135 toilets scrubbed, 250 kilos of cow dung spread, 2 tons of rocks shovelled, 60 metres of pathway laid, 57 beds made, and I cannot even remember how many wine glasses we’ve polished.”
Despite coming from comfortable lives, the couple wrote of having to pick up these odd jobs in order to continue financing their trip.
The post continued, “You see, to come from the luxuries we left behind in Johannesburg, to the brutal truth of volunteer work, we are now on the opposite end of the scale. We’re toilet cleaners, dog poop scoopers, grocery store merchandisers, and rock shovelers.”
“It’s painstakingly hard and dirty work.”
Although they talk about the rewards of the last few months, they also called them “some of the dirtiest and smelliest, and we’ve had to adapt with the least amount of necessities and food.”
“We eat jam on crackers most days, get roughly 5hrs of sleep per night, and lug our extremely heavy bags through cobbled streets at 1am, trying to find our accommodation (because bus fares are not part of the budget, obviously).”
After reading their post, I for one was furious. How dare they make myself and other followers so envious of their perfect lives?