You're Doing WHAT?!?

Trip Start Apr 09, 2006
Trip End Jun 09, 2007

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Flag of United States  , North Carolina
Friday, February 10, 2006

The time is coming soon! Only a few months to go until my RTW (round-the-world) trip. I've been hounded by many of you about my travelogue, so I thought it best to go ahead & get it set up. To start, I'd like to cover a few of the most common questions that I get:

What kind of trip? Where are you going & for how long?
This is the best part - I don't know! I've decided to buy 1-way plane tickets so my trip can be entirely flexible. I'm also going to do quite a bit of my travelling overland. Generally, I'm planning to be out of the country for 12 months. That is, I've planned for a fixed budget that I'm prepared to spend and I think it will last for 12 months. In the end, the money could last anywhere between 3 months and 2 years - I'm confident I'll have a great time at either extreme.

Again, my itinerary is entirely flexible, but my best guess at this time looks roughly like this:

Apr-06----North Middle East
May-06----South Middle East
Jun-06----Eastern Europe
Jul-06----Eastern Europe / North Asia
Aug-06----North / SE Asia
Sep-06----SE Asia
Oct-06----SE Asia
Dec-06----S. Pacific / South America
Jan-07----South America
Feb-07----Central America
Mar-07----Central / North America

We'll see what actually happens!! I'll be leaving home & spending a week working my way up the East Coast before departing the US from Boston on 4/17/06. I plan to stop off in D.C. to get my visa for Syria & then work my way north visiting friends along the way.

How in the H can you afford this??
Well, my initial response is usually to say "mind your own beeswax!" Seriously, I went on a quick RTW in 2002 and ever since have had the bug to really get out and see the world. Since then I've been gradually saving up funds for something, but I didn't know what that something would be. As time allowed, I researched different travel destinations just because I was interested. Then, about seven months ago I decided to take the plunge & really see the world. Since then I have significantly reduced or eliminated all extra expenses to make sure the Travel Fund was appropriately fattened. No weekend trips; no drinks after work; no going crazy on the weekends; no new clothes; bringing my lunch to work more often - the whole sh'bang.

What about your life - your job - your house??
I'm young (OK...I'm 32 but I still claim to be young) and single - it's now or never. My employer wouldn't allow a 12-month leave, so I will be resigning at the end of March and will look for a job upon my return. I hope to re-interview at my current company, but will also check around to see what else is out there. The house is on the market, but my trip is not contingent upon the sale. If it sells, I'll move my belongings into storage before leaving. If not, I'll just board up the house & take off! I'll sell my car just a few days before I leave.

You're travelling alone?? Is that safe?
Of course travelling isn't entirely safe regardless of the circumstances, but I always keep abreast of current events and will forgo any place that seems too risky (with me, myself and I being the jury). You guys know me - I'm a planner and I've travelled extensively in the past. I have backup plans to my backup plans for potential emergencies with health, money or passport. Anything else can be replaced. So, let it be known today, I will post journal entries to this site at least every three weeks after I leave (and much more often on average). No need to call out the calvary if I'm in Syria & haven't updated in two weeks or if you read about a ferry overturning in Vietnam while I'm there. Instead, picture me wearing a sombrero on a camel tour in the desert having a jolly 'ol time.

Keep in mind that it is quite common among Europeans, Ozzies and Kiwis to travel RTW during their "gap year" before or after university, so there will be tons of other travelers out there. Even so, I'm sure I'll get lonely from time to time. It's inevitable and it's OK. Those of you who know me also know that I make friends easily and I'm sure the bouts of loneliness will be short ones.

Other questions? travelers: have a question for me? Feel free to e-mail me & I'd be happy to respond. E-mail me or join TravelPod (for free) to send me a message.

And now, the most important thing...
The most important thing is for me to submit a blanket apology, in advance, to anyone reading what may come. I'm sure this journal will end up as an unedited mix of history lessons, boring bus stories and erotic escapades (yeah, right). Every now and again I have been known to possess a foul mouth or strong opinions - prepare yourself for it.

This is really intended to be a brief record of my journey as it occurs...not a literary or introspective masterpiece. Try to read the meaning of what I write, as the actual words may be different.

Consider the blanket thrown.

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cedargrove on

one lucky dude.
Man, I envy you. I hope you have the best time there is to be had. Throw some rice for me in the holly land. Good luck and peace.....Ryan P.

cedargrove on

Oops not 'holly land' i meant the holy land. he he

casabat on

Happy Birthday!
Hey Dad, Chelsea and I just want to say Happy Birthday. - We all have been thinking about you everyday and we hope you have a WONDERFUL Birthday!

Love ya

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