It’s nearly here. I can almost feel it. Warm, tropical air, spicy curries and exotic spiky fruits with strange names. Lychee. Jackfruit. Rambutan. Okay, maybe it’s just that last one that’s weird.
Our Indefinite Travel Adventure (read, this is not a holiday) is just around the corner, starting in Southeast Asia, a part of the world that is so close, yet so far away.
Close in distance, but a world away culturally.
And I can’t wait.
I’ve always loved Asia. From my first overseas trip to Bali, to countless jaunts to Singapore, Hong Kong and Bangkok as a flight attendant, I have always felt an affinity with the place. Yeah I know, Asia is a very broad term that refers to a whole heap of uniquely interesting countries with extremely diverse cultures.
But I love all the places I have visited so far, and can’t wait to discover more.
The dream becomes a reality…
We’re almost there. We have sold our home, and most of our possessions. We’ve purchased the majority of out travel gear. We’ve scaled the mountain of fear and uncertainty, reached the summit, and now jog down the other side. Confident. Excited. Happy.
I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. Visas, vaccinations, flight connections, airport layovers. We’ve expelled so much energy dismantling the material evidence of our lives here, that we haven’t really done much travel planning.
Our first stop will be Cambodia. We’re flying into Phnom Penh to meet up with our friend Marty, who is having a Southeast Asian adventure of his own. He’s a great mate, and we are so looking forward to sharing some adventures with him after countless nights in our backyard pondering the prospect together.
We plan to head to some islands for rest, recuperation and relaxation. We’ve been working our butts off at work , downsizing our possessions and dismantling our lives here. We need some down time.
We will apply for our Cambodian 30 day visas via the e-visa site before we arrive. That’s topping the To Do list at the moment.
Then, we’ll probably head into Thailand. Tyrhone would like to do some Muay Thai boxing training. He wants me to do it too. I want to bathe an elephant. Not ride one, bathe one. I want to hug it and touch it and kiss it (yes, I’ve had my shots) and I’m not sure why.
We’ll spend the following few months exploring Vietnam, Laos, and the Philippines. Maybe Malaysia and Indonesia too.
When we’ve had a gut-full of the delights of SEA, which I can’t imagine ever happening, we might head into China, which I can only imagine is going to be One Huge Culture Shock.
Tyrhone is fascinated with China. Me…not so much. Honestly, I am a little scared!
On an episode of Karl Pilkington’s Idiot Abroad, a man ate chicken foetus. Maybe I’ll be able to brave China if I veto eggs.
Here is your scrambled eggs madam, don’t mind the feathers, eyeballs and beaks.
I know, I know, I eat (and absolutely love) blue cheese, which some cultures would find positively stomach churning, but I just can’t summon the courage to acquire a taste for bird foetus.
I’ll stick to mouldy cheese thanks.
And After the Delights of China?
It’s anyones guess really.
We have 1 year Canadian work/study visas, having applied for them just before our 31st birthdays. The catch is, however, we have to arrive by Jan 2013 in order to activate them, exactly a year after mine was granted.
Now I have never been too keen on this idea for some reason, believing that I simply won’t be ready get a job (those words feel like foetus in my mouth) so early in our adventure. But it’s always good to have options.
Adding to that, I have committed to a very exciting and as yet undisclosed adventure in India in the first two weeks of January 2013 with two blogging friends, that I am just so crazy excited about, the details of which I will reveal soon. But believe me, it’s going to be epic…
I’d love to spend several months at least in India, another of my favourite countries.
And though it is too far into the future to contemplate right now, Canada, USA, Central America and South America are definitely on the cards.
Damn it, I forgot to factor in Africa (being such a puny-sized continent and all), which is actually my dream destination. I’d love to attempt Kilimanjaro, and of course see as many beautiful animals and people as possible. So we will get there at some point, too, I just don’t know when.
So they are our un-plans! And they will of course change and develop and unfold as we go.
My only hope is that I am able to be present in each place we happen to land, especially those places that we don’t plan to find ourselves in, but do.
The whole purpose of this adventure is to let things happen naturally, and to give ourselves time and space to appreciate different places. If we want to sleep in, we will. If we want to climb a mountain, so be it.
We hope to give ourselves total freedom in our travels, not restricting ourselves to having to see certain sights but rather allowing the world to show herself to us, through people, culture and nature.
My blogging friend Kim shared a great quote with me the other day:
Take the first step, and the staircase will appear…
I’d love to live my life by this. So far, it’s working out pretty well.