7 November 2009

The Dream

This blog will document my adventures as I attempt to make one of my dreams a reality.  A dream to travel around the world for a year, volunteering in places I've yet to discover, experiencing exotic places I've never travelled to previously, making life long friendships with perfect strangers and rekindling old friendships with friends and family now scattered around the world.

I think I started to visualise this trip about 13 years ago when  I first experienced how liberating it was to give up my day job and live on the road.  My partner and I were moving from North America to Australia and we'd decided to take a 2 year break to experience exotic places we had only read about so far. That break, spent backpacking Europe for 3 months and later Asia for 4, was split up by spending a year teaching English in South Korea and finally living in Sri Lanka for a short time before migrating Down Under.  

I have been back on the road many times since then but they were shorter excursions, that included 3 months of 4 wheel driving around Australia, backpacking South America and going on safari to Africa.
When I look back on my life, many of the moments that took my breath away have been a memory from a place I travelled through, or a person I met while travelling.  I have marvelled at the instant connections I made with perfect strangers over a shared experience, that has lasted long after the excitement of the trip had faded.  I have often looked over photos of those distant places and felt transported back in time to the sights and smells of those exotic locations!

While on the road I have met many ordinary people living extraordinary lives and they've inspired me to live my own life a little differently.  This has resulted in a life experience stretched to more than 10 jobs on 3 continents always interspersed with interesting travel to faraway places.  I hope this blog will in turn inspire you, to question the purpose of your own life and ask if it is time to challenge yourself to do something a little outside your comfort zone!

The past few years have been challenging for me on most fronts and I've felt a strong urge to step off the treadmill for awhile.  Perhaps the recent death of my dad and a close friend have also resulted in a strong desire to be reflective of the past and to find time to ponder the future. 
This will be the first time I will actually circumnavigate the globe and I intend to go it alone, although I may meet up with friends along the way.  I must admit the prospect did seem a little daunting at first.  But the clock is ticking and I need to fulfill a personal goal of getting to every continent before I turn 50 and I've yet to experience Antarctica!

It will be hard to walk away from the reassuring friendships I've grown accustomed to, the comforts of my home, and the security of a regular income.   Yet, as Sir Richard Francis Burton said in the Arabian Nights : "Travel! And thou shalt find new friends for old ones left behind"!
So I have resolved to begin this journey, that I might feel the wind in my hair once more and experience the thrill of the great open road stretched out before me.  Van Gogh once said, "I dream my painting, and then I paint my dream".  It is time to paint my dream....

1 comment:

anneh said...

Fantastic that you are making your dream a reality very soon! Loved reading your introduction and then your "planned trip". It sounds so exciting. As well as seeing new places and people, and returning to some spots you are also contributing to such worthwhile causes which will be so rewarding. I look forward to following your blog over the next year it will be wonderful! Anne Hall