By , December 7, 2010 7:13 pm

This blog has been on our to-do list for a long time.  Since March 1st, 2010 to be precise.  That was the day Ashley and I decided that we were going to travel the world.  That was a big step for us.  One could argue that we had wanted to travel the world since our first week long trip to Cuba together in 2005, but this was different.  No longer are we wanting to travel the world, now we were going to travel the world.

In the beginning, we thought our trip would be very similar to the stories you hear over and over again from those fortunate youths who’ve made the journey before us.  We’d ask work for a year long leave of absence, go to all the must see sights, sleep in hostels and fly from one country to the next every odd week.  At the end of the year, we would return home broke, and resume work as if we had never left.  Or in the case that we were not granted a leave of absence from work, start looking for employment.

Things have changed a bit since the beginning of March.  We’ve decided that we want to experience the world, not just see it.  So, we are going to take a bit more time on our journey.  We’ll stay with locals where possible, and try our best to get jobs or work as volunteers along the way.  Of course living and working in a country for an extended period of time will give us a good experience of what it is really like to live in each place we visit, but it’s also going to take a lot more time.  At this point, we’ve more or less thrown the 1 year artificial time frame out the window.

So, how long will we be gone?  I don’t know.  We’ll keep at it until one of two things happen.  Either we get sick of it, or we can’t afford to continue (money, health, family issues, etc.).  It may take a year, it may take 5 years, or it may take the rest of our lives.  Mutually we’ve decided to start off in the more affordable countries, namely avoiding the USA, Canada, and the UK.  We are, after all, trying to stretch out our savings as far as they will go.  We’ve got our sights set on South and Central America right now, and that’s enough of a plan for us.

We’ve got a lot of work to do before we start on our journey.  The go date, by the way, is tentatively set for July 2011.  This is our to-do list as it was in March.  Unfortunately, we haven’t managed to cross very many items off of it yet.  Good thing this blog counts.

  1. Sell our house
  2. Sell our car
  3. Sell everything that we can’t take with us
  4. Store or giveaway everything else
  5. Renew Ashley’s Passport
  6. Purchase a travel laptop
  7. Get vaccinated against whatever we can
  8. Build a website
  9. Ask work for a leave of absence, or resign
  10. Plan our first port-o-call and get required visas, entry permits, and preferably find a job

We’ll try to write a few blog entries as we hit these things on the head, and a few more each time we think of something else that should have been on the list to begin with.

Now’s a good time to test out the blog, so please leave us a comment.  We look forward to reading what you have to say.  If you have any advice, or want to help us out by purchasing our house or other stuff, let us know.

4 Responses to “The Decision – March 1st, 2010”

  1. Amy says:

    Congrats on accomplishing the hardest part – going from I’d love to go from saying, we’re going! My husband and I are traveling for a year, and you are right, it is an artificial end point. On the one hand, we wanted to put a limit on it, but on the other hand, it can be constraining, especially because we hadn’t really traveled before and want to go everywhere. That’s awesome that you guys are just leaving it open ended. Have fun planning!

  2. Mike Lenzen says:

    Amy, thanks for the comment. Not sure if you realized or not, but you left the first one!

    There certainly is an air of freedom that comes from not having an end date to our trip, and I’m certain that we’ll really appreciate it once we get started.

    The open endedness of it all does have it’s downside. For one, we don’t have a solid itinerary. Already we have family members who want to come visit us somewhere on our trip, but we are unable to plan when and where to collide.

    There is also a bit of a queasy feeling I get now when I think about not having a home to come back to, and no job to return to. I’m sure this will pass when we hit the open road.

  3. Alonna says:

    Congrats on your decision to travel! My husband and I did a RTW trip, returning this past June 2010. You’re way ahead of the game if you already realize you need to take it slow – usually we all learn that the hard way – so good for you.

    Good luck with the planning pre-trip phase, and feel free to email if you have any questions!

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