Elena and Dominik set off on a trip around the world, but got stuck in Bali. The two earn their money as influencers, they say that without any shame. There is more work behind the job than many people think.

The satisfaction on their faces is immediately noticeable. These two young people, their inexperience shows how content they are.

They are content with themselves and the world in which they live. This world that is open to them. As open as only a few people on our planet.

Dominik and Elena: finished school, well trained, finished their studies and before they start with the serious side of life, they are planning a trip around the world. With a concept, of course. Nothing works today without concepts.

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“We’re influencers,” they say, and there’s no shame in their voice. why? In the 21st century, this is a profession not to be questioned. Criticize yes, but don’t make fun of it.

They upload videos of their travels, places where they sleep, they have an Instagram profile and more than 30,000 people follow them. 30,000 people want to take part in this adventure.

Elena and Dominik make it possible. The videos look effortless, the photos give the feeling that it’s always vacation. It seems the motto of the two is: “It should always be free.” Every day in life is a Saturday.

But at some point, on their journey, they were exhausted. “We wanted to have a solid base again,” says Dominik. Pack your backpack, unpack your backpack, no rest. They have now found it in Bali. The enclave for digital nomads from all over the world.

Surfing, sunshine, good internet connection, workspaces. People who work here are changing how we understand work. Work doesn’t need an office, no 9 to 5, no commuting.

Dominik, Elena and all the others here who work for the world have sand between their toes and skin that is always tan. They link achievements with longing. So far, the longing of workers in Europe, in Germany, in the rest of the world means doing nothing. Lying on the beach and sleeping, but not: lying on the beach and working.

“Dominik really wanted to go,” says Elena. She actually wanted to get into work right away. Both met at a party in Berlin, they became a couple. They dreamed, no, Dominik dreamed of leaving, of leaving behind. Unlike many emigrants, he didn’t dream of a new beginning, he wanted this life to finally start.

And Elena should be there. Hence this trip around the world. “Actually, we wanted to come back somehow,” says Dominik. “But we just stayed in Bali,” he explains. “I would say we emigrated.”

Everything could also be done from here. Work is no longer the same as it used to be, work can also look different. Just because the sun is shining doesn’t mean it’s not work.

The effortlessness in her videos, the randomness of the photos shows that there is a lot of work involved. “We plan our days, we don’t live into them,” says Dominik.

They would think carefully about what needs to be produced and how. Content considerations would have to be made. And above all: the community must be looked after. “It’s work,” says Elena.

Working abroad for Germany, for German fans. And then Dominik formulates a wish that concerns many emigrants. “We want to be part of it,” he says. And by that he means the Balinese society.

Thilo Mischke was born in Berlin in 1981. He works as a journalist, author and TV presenter. He has received numerous awards for his journalistic work, for example he won a Bavarian television award in 2020 and was named “Journalist of the Year” in the “National Reportage” category.

“We’re learning the language now.” Is that enough? “Probably not,” he says. And Elena nods. “Belonging is more than just speaking the language.”

When they talk about it, a certain loneliness can be felt among all the digital nomads. A certain exclusion. But the two already know what helps against it. “We now want to rent a house here and live properly,” says Dominik.

And the plan is already in place: “We will also show all of this on YouTube so that people can see how everything works here.” Studies, a job and now a house. Under 30. Dominik and Elena are living the German dream. In Bali.