“We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and untrodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey.” –John Hope
It took us 103 days and we set foot on five different continents. We visited 12 different countries and explored 52 cities. We traveled on big planes and puddle jumpers, cruise ships and ferries. We took trains and buses, and even rented a car, scooter and ATV to get around. But most of the time, once we were in a city, we simply walked.
We were able to see some of the most coveted treasures that our world boasts; the Pyramids, the Sistine Chapel, the Pantheon, Ephesus, the Sea of Galilee, etc….. We walked on beaches in Brazil, Turkey, Barcelona, Cinque Terre, the Amalfi Coast, and so many more. We tried new and interesting foods in most countries and we almost always indulged in their local wines as well. We met new friends along the way, but we continually missed ours back home.
We fell in love with many places like Tuscany, Bodrum, Barcelona and Buenos Aries. Others, like Cairo, Casablanca and Lisbon, are places that we were happy to leave behind.
This trip took a lot of planning, but we were also spontaneous when we could be. We hit a few snags along the way and the path wasn’t always easy. The language barrier and way of life was an eye opener, as was the poverty in many countries. One of the main lessons we learned from this adventure was to never take the US for granted again. Our quality of life is so far above the rest of the world that we sometimes don’t realize just how lucky we are. I can see why other countries think we are all wealthy here; we have a roof over our head to keep us safe from the elements, a car to get us around, food to eat, drinkable water from our faucets, a warm shower, movies to watch and fancy coffee houses on every corner. I will never again feel entitled to these basic comforts after seeing how others struggle so hard for such rudimentary things.
Yet, for every story of poverty or pollution, we have two that show the beauty of God’s creations and the compassion of mankind. We have posted some of our favorite pictures from the journey to prove just this point.
Although we wouldn’t do an expedition like this ever again, it was indeed the trip of a lifetime….and we feel so blessed to have been able to take it. We have truly created memories that will last a lifetime. And after spending 24/7 with my new wife for over 100 days, living out of small carry on suitcases, I feel certain that we will too!
In closing, we want to thank you for reading each week and for keeping us in your prayers. I hope you were able to live vicariously through us as we explored a good portion of our planet. Perhaps we have given you some ideas for your future travels, or maybe you just got a good laugh or two? Either way, blogging about our escapades and knowing that those closest to us would be following along helped us stay connected with what really matters in life, friends and family…..and for that, we are sincerely grateful.
Bon voyage and bona fortuna!