Thursday, December 27, 2007

the world by road

so i'm here at reporter's, again. christmas is officially over (yet, the christmas markets are still open... which i don't understand. close them already so i can walk from mustek to the post office without running into 157 people, milling around eating those sugary roll things and not paying attention to where they're going).

i feel pretty terrible because i've had 6 days of vacation so far and i've been just sitting around. having fun with the girls, of course, but feeling like i/we should have taken advantage of this time off to travel. some did -- lori to budapest, anna to the mountains, julie, amanda and marie to vienna -- but i just didn't get it together in time. i had wanted to go to italy, but after christmas shopping for myself, buying a new metro pass and filling my phone with credits, i've got about 400Kc leftover.

i've been in europe for almost 4 months and i've barely been anywhere. dresden and vienna for less than a day combined.

one advantage of staying in town was the opportunity to meet lori's friends, steve and steve. all of those stranded in prague for christmas gathered at drew/marie's apartment saturday night. lori had just returned from her trip to budapest and bratislava, which she embarked on with her friends from college -- the aformentioned steve and steve -- who are in the midst of travelling around the world.

i can easily say that every one of the people i've met so far while i've been abroad have opened me up to a new experience or worldview and whether very or maybe only a little different than mine, they've all been valuable. but these two blew my mind. they dropped everything -- quit very secure jobs, cashed in 401Ks, planned for two years -- and have been travelling now for almost a year.

and they're driving all of it. they started in LA, went through new zealand and australia and asia. lori met them as they entered eastern europe. they came through prague on the way to berlin to go through denmark, sweden and norway, back through london and eventually to africa. they still have about 10 months or so left to circumnavigate the globe latitudinally and longitudinally.

talking to them was fascinating. we couldn't stop asking them questions (that i'm sure they've heard a thousand times), but they were always willing to share their stories. they talked about catching dengay (sp?) fever, which causes internal hemorrhaging and at its worst makes you cough blood and bleed from your eyes. hat-of-child steve showed me a scar on his elbow from a cut he stitched himself. i can't remember all the things he told me, and that was only the tip of the iceberg.

it was pretty inspiring. they're smart guys but there's nothing unusual about their story other than they both were willing to do anything to have this experience. it made me feel pretty bad about never having left the united states until i was 23 and staying here in europe without taking advantage of the opportunity to travel.

i can't really put into words how cool it was to meet them and how amazing their story is. you can check out their trip on http://www.theworldbyroad.com. they have a blog and pictures, and you can meet up with them for a part of their journey.

1 comment:

Lori said...

Jen, didn't we decide to meet up with TWBR guys in South America come summer? This will have to be worked around your Trans-Sib rail trip, but I see LOTS of traveling in your future :)