I haven’t talked much about my future traveling plans. I’m going to be doing a RTW (’round the world) trip with Ivan in a few months. We’re traveling to Southeast Asia first. Ivan and I will be staying in hostels and couchsurfing. I am pretty excited. I’ve read a few great RTW blogs, books and seen a great documentary on backpacking around the world. It has given me some insight of what it’s like to go backpacking around the world. I am also a bit scared. I guess it’s the big unknown. I haven’t done anything so bold in my life. I’m basically quitting my job and going traveling for a year. I know some of my family and friends probably think I’m nuts. I tried to take a Leave of Absence at work but they only allow a month, unless it’s military or maternity. Of course, if I do come back to the company within 6 months, I’ll still have the same hire-on date. At least that’s good.
I still have so much to do in Las Vegas. I have to pack things up for storing. I’m going to spend lots of time with family and friends. I still have lots of things to purchase for the trip. I’m constantly looking at different products I have to buy online and comparing prices. I bought my big backpack The North Face W Terra 40. It’s 40 Liters (2,400 cubic inches).
It’s going to hold a lot of stuff. I don’t know how heavy it’s going to be since I don’t have everything yet. I don’t even know how to pack this thing. REI has great advice about packing at this site. I’m so glad that Ivan has been a HUGE help. He’s traveled to many places before. So, he has helped me with what to buy and told me about great books and blogs to read.
Here’s some great resources if you’re thinking of backpacking –
The Rough Guide to First-Time Around the World by Doug Lansky is a great book. It’s an essential book to read. It tells you everything like vaccination information, what to pack, visas, weather, volunteering, security, attractions and festivals. There’s tons of online resources that are very helpful.
Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel by Rolf Potts is another good book. This book is about the philosophy of traveling. It inspires you to go out into the world and travel with an open mind. Rolf has a great website here.
A Map for Saturday is a great documentary about a RTW trip. A guy named Brook quits his great tv producer job to travel the world for a year. He chronicles the trip and his feelings. It also includes other backpacker’s views and feelings about traveling. It’s a great movie and very well made.
Reading about the different areas you’re going to be exploring helps out. Right now, I’m reading Southeast Asia on a Shoestring by China Williams. I think it’s good to read about the culture, activities and attractions in each country.
I’ve been trying to save money. It’s been hard for me. I’ve given up buying books, mangas and anime. I did buy Bizenghast 4 the other day. It’s such a beautiful story with awesome artwork. I just have to read what happens next! I’ve been trying not to spend as much.
I know there’s going to be things I’ll have to deal with on the road. I’m going to miss my family and friends. I will be keeping touch with them with Skype, the internet and a blog. Of course, the comforts of home may be another thing. I have an open mind. I’m looking forward to the adventure to come. I’m going to learn and explore new places. I’m going to embrace the unknown.