Last week I celebrated two years on the road. It wasn’t a big celebration – I’d had that with friends a few nights earlier – but as Lauren and I ate smoked fish and polished off a bottle of wine, we unsurprisingly got to talking about the most memorable aspects of our travels.
“What are your three favourite cities?” one of us would ask, and then we’d both have to come up with an answer. “How about your favourite meals? Guesthouses? Sunsets?”
I was as surprised by the differences between our choices as the similarities, and we ended up playing that game for hours. I’m sure that had nothing to do with the wine, of course.
Since I figured that perhaps Lauren might not be the only person interested in those answers, I decided to write down as many as I could remember here as well.Continue Reading →
Twenty four months.
It’s a long time to be on the road.
I’ll hit that milestone tomorrow, a long way removed in distance and experience from when I flew out of Melbourne to start this journey. Even though I was ready to leave, I had no idea what the future would hold. Where would I go? Who would I meet? How would I make enough money to survive? I really wasn’t sure.
Of course, it all turned out for the best. It invariably does.Continue Reading →
Travel plans and I don’t tend to get along. I struggle to make them, and then as soon as I’ve done so, I start finding ways to do something completely different. This isn’t just an occasional affliction – it happens all the time.
When travelling solo this isn’t a problem – changing my mind on a whim doesn’t really matter to anybody else – but it’s the kind of thing that can cause massive arguments amongst groups or couples. When someone has their heart set on a particular place or just likes to have everything organised far in advance, and then a spanner is deliberately thrown in the works… well, let’s just say that chaos often ensues.
Luckily for both of us, Lauren is exactly the same as me when it comes to planning. We’ll both throw ideas around for a while, come up with the best one we can, commit to it… and then immediately start thinking of something else we’d much rather do instead.Continue Reading →
I’ve come to a realisation lately.
Around 18 months ago I wrote a post ambitiously entitled Why I’ll be a 73 year old backpacker, where I outlined the reasons that I’d likely still be wandering the planet as I entered my eighth decade on it. While I still stand by that statement and the curiosity that drives it, it’s become apparent that I’m already becoming a pretty terrible backpacker at half that age.
To be honest I’m not sure I ever really fitted the stereotype all that well, even back in my early twenties. I didn’t have a gap year. I often travelled with a girlfriend. I never got eaten by bedbugs. I used deodorant. Every day, in fact.
These days, though, I fit it even less. It seems as if the longer I spend on the road, the less “backpacker-like” I’ve become. It’s been almost two years since I started this trip, and with each passing week I realise the following to be true.Continue Reading →
We’re already seventeen days into the new year, and I probably should have made these resolutions long ago. After the best year of my life in 2012, though, it’s taken me a while to figure out exactly how I’m going to top it.
Oh, and a theme. I needed one of those too.
Last year it was building. Relationships, businesses, experiences and income, I built on them all. The building is going to continue in 2013, but the focus and approach is going to change a little…Continue Reading →
Exactly one year ago today I set my goals and a theme for 2012. My plans were many and varied, but they all revolved around one word: building.
Twelve months on, it’s almost time to repeat the exercise. Before that, though, I need to see how well I went – one thing I learned in corporate life is that everybody loves to make plans, but few take the time to evaluate them afterwards.
So I thought I’d put together an annual report of sorts. Where did I succeed? Where did I fail? How well did I stick to my plans, and what needs to change in 2013?Continue Reading →
Just before Christmas last year, I sat down to write about the previous twelve months. It had been a mixed bag, largely spent working in Australia while dreaming of a different, happier life. My passport lay mostly gathering dust until November, when I finally took a determined step towards that life, ditched the cubicle and headed for Thailand armed only with a backpack and a plan.
As the new year lay stretched out before me, I was filled with excitement and hope for what lay ahead. So how did it go?
Honestly, even better than I could ever have hoped. This is story of my 2012.Continue Reading →
Somehow, in the midst of everything that’s going on in my life, I had managed to completely miss the fact that Christmas is less than a month away. Here in Thailand – or at least in Chiang Mai – the general lack of carols, tinsel and Xmas advertising helps with that a lot.
Around this time for the last two years, I have put together a list of gift ideas for those of us that can fit everything that matters into a backpack. Always a stickler for tradition (ahem), I figured I’d do it again.
Here, one more time, are my Christmas gift recommendations for the traveller in your life.Continue Reading →