Last Word and Some Stats
Trip Start Jan 11, 2012
38Trip End Aug 09, 2012
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Days on the road - 209
Countries visited - 14
Number of accommodations - 81
Number of buses - 51
Hours spent on a bus - 341
Books read - Don 16, Wa 21
Best meal - Don: white chocolate crepe in Bogota, Colombia
Food most missed - biltong
Best hike - Volcan Concepcion, Nicaragua
Best cycle - Bariloche, Argentina
Number of items lost/stolen - 17
Best local food - ceviche, numerous countries
Best local drink - Flor de Cana rum, Nicaragua
Best new nicknames - Kelly: Ronald McDonald and Han: Katniss Everdeen. They both ask that you use these nicknames exclusively from now on.
Best journeys - 4x4 trip into Bolivia and the sail from Colombia to Panama.
Friends met - Hubert in Argentina; Michelle in Bolivia; Amanda and Nick in Bolivia and Colombia; Jenny in Peru; Edge, Dave and Willis in Ecuador; Nick and Ally in Colombia; Kel and Al in Colombia and Panama; Jen and Jerry in Panama; Paul and Jambles in Costa Rica; Han and Lanie in Nicaragua; and many more wonderful people that we met for the first time somewhere along the road.
Regrets - Jog on.
For our final send-off we have turned to the brilliant Dr Seuss, he's much better at this writing business.
Thank you all for reading.
Don and Wa
Oh the places you'll go - Dr Seuss
Congratulations! Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away!
You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose
You’ll look up and down streets. Look ‘em over with care. About some you will say, “I don’t choose to go there.” With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you’re too smart to go down any not-so-good street.
And you may not find any you’ll want to go down. In that case, of course, you’ll head straight out of town.
It’s opener there in the wide open air.
Out there things can happen and frequently do to people as brainy and footsy as you.
And when things start to happen, don’t worry. Don’t stew. Just go right along. You’ll start happening too.
OH! THE PLACES YOU’LL GO!
You’ll be on your way up! You’ll be seeing great sights! You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.
You won’t lag behind, because you’ll have the speed. You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon take the lead
Except when you don’t. Because, sometimes, you won’t.
I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true and Hang-ups can happen to you.
You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch. And your gang will fly on. You’ll be left in a Lurch.
You’ll come down from the Lurch with an unpleasant bump. And the chances are, then, that you’ll be in a Slump.
And when you’re in a Slump, you’re not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.
You will come to a place where the streets are not marked. Some windows are lighted. But mostly they’re darked. A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin! Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in? How much can you lose? How much can you win?
And IF you go in, should you turn left or right… or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite? Or go around back and sneak in from behind? Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find, for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind
You can get so confused that you’ll start in to race down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space, headed, I fear, toward a most useless place. The Waiting Place…
…for people just waiting. Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or a No or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting.
Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite or waiting around for Friday night or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil, or a Better Break or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants or a wig with curls, or Another Chance. Everyone is just waiting.
NO! That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing.
With banner flip-flapping, once more you’ll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you’re that kind of a guy!
Oh, the places you’ll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. there are games to be won. And the magical things you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all. Fame! You’ll be famous as famous can be, with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.
Except when they don’t. Because, sometimes, they won’t.
I’m afraid that sometimes you’ll play lonely games too. Games you can’t win ‘cause you’ll play against you.
All Alone! Whether you like it or not, Alone will be something you’ll be quite a lot.
And when you’re alone, there’s a very good chance you’ll meet things that scare you right out of your pants
But on you will go though the weather be foul On you will go though your enemies prowl On you will go though the Hakken-Kraks howl Onward up many a frightening creek, though your arms may get sore and your sneakers may leak.
On and on you will hike and I know you’ll hike far and face up to your problems whatever they are.
You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know. You’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go. So be sure when you step. Step with care and great tact and remember that Life’s a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.
And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)
KID, YOU’LL MOVE MOUNTAINS!
So… be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea, you’re off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So…get on your way!