The planning stage

Trip Start Feb 08, 2006
Trip End Jul 19, 2006

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Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, December 31, 2005

We leave in exactly 39 days! It's finally time to get down to the nitty-gritty, including setting up the travelogue.

It seems like the planning stage has lasted forever, given the delay of a year. But it's really been more of a dreaming stage since we don't have many plans yet. So far we have a map with some pins in it, a guidebook for Peru, a basic outline of where we'll be when, and RT tickets to Peru and London. Ok, that's not quite true, but we're leaving the arrangements to be made on the road. I know many of you are probably hyperventilating just thinking about it, but it works for us.

Our favorite moments have always been when we just sit still for a while and allow a place to sink in. It literally feels like you begin to absorb the place; its feel, scent, sounds, and even a strong sense of its people. Sure we'll see the Pyramids and take a boat up the Amazon, but I already know that our favorite stories will be about the time when we found a good spot to people watch or when James and Erin hung out with the local kids. Check out the Costa Rica entries if you wonder what I mean.

We're excited about whatever is ahead of us and hope that you all enjoy it too. We've e-mailed you info about our travelogue because you're an important part of our lives and we want to share these life altering moments with you as they happen. So hang on, it should be an interesting ride.

Addendum January 17: We leave now in 22 days and I've been asked by almost everyone what the plan is. So here's the basic itinerary, keeping in mind that most of this is subject to change and only Peru tickets and the round trip in and out of Europe have been purchased:

Feb 8-March 29: Peru. This includes several days teaching English on an island in Lake Titicaca, Macchu Picchu (maybe hiking the Inca trail, maybe not), and about 2 weeks in the Amazon.
March 29-April 1: home for a couple of days to deal with the kids school issues (take midterms) and see their dad.
April 2-early May: Eastern Europe. We'll fly into Prague and stay a few days with Zuska (Suzanne) and Petr. After that we'll make it up, working our way by train and bus to Athens.
May: Egypt. We may be here a few weeks or we may decide that we hate Egypt and leave immediately (I've heard plenty of horror stories).
June and early July - Tanzania. Erin's planning this part. So far it looks like a safari, a week(ish) camping in some mountains that I can't remember the name of, and laying around on beaches on Zanzibar, Mafia, and Songo-Songo.
From there a few days in London to reacclimate before heading home on July 19.
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faarena on

Keep on Keepin' on
Hey Nora! Thanks for including me. Jen and I look forward to 'following' you, James and Erin around the world. You guys are the coolest family I know too!

croixfamily on

The coolest family I know
I feel honored that you are including me in your list of 'important
people' to share your journey with! I still dream about Costa Rica
sometimes, and I'm not sure if you knew that Beth Hanna now teaches children
in Guatamala. Remember her? La Fortuna? Once you begin seeing new
places it becomes addicting I think. I'm excited to hear about Peru
because it's a future destination for me as well (after I learn some more
Spanish... Mi Espanol es muy horible todo via!)
As for me, I took a group of my high school students to Italy and
France last summer, and we're going back again this summer! After that I
think I will take a break from the tour thing and travel sola again.
Happy New Year and Happy Travels!

tholland on

Missing you already!
Hey guys.

Well, it's halfway through the England match and Hannah and I are halfway through a bottle of wine. No goals so we are feeling considerably sorry for ourselves and are hoping that you're all willing us to win so we do better in the second half.

I am picturing you all sitting round in our lovely Penguin 'living room' with a nice cool bottle of Stella. I felt so sad when I woke up this morning and realised I wasn't in beautiful Dahab and the sun wasn't shining. I cried when I was telling my mum all about the amazing times I'd had ... I miss it so much already but it just makes me realise what a cool two weeks I had and how lucky I was to love diving so much and meet you guys etc etc........... and it makes me more determined to save some money and come back!!!!!

I've loaded all my underwater photos onto my laptop - they are REALLY cool and I've put one as my desktop picture!! Anyway, I'll stop before I depress myself too much - it's back to the real world of work tomorrow with a thud so I'm enjoying today as much as possible and we've just ordered some Middle Eastern food to prolong the holiday as much as possible!!

Have fun and make the most of lovely lovely Dahab in your last few days. Say a big 'HI 4' to Hamdy for me and we'll see you in London - yay!!!!! Also, as I won't be in the office much over the next two weeks, it would be better if you use my other email address instead of my work one:

Ok, take care dudeys xxxxxx

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