When I headed out on my first long term, solo backpacking adventure to Australia back in 2009 I had no idea what was ahead of me, very little in the way of plans and no clue what would pan out.
After I finished my working holiday visa at the end of 2010 though there was one thing that was very prominent in my mind – I wanted to travel more and I knew it was going to be a big part of my life.
18 months working for STA Travel in the UK only fuelled this further and after I returned form my first trip to Thailand I made the decision to quit my job, the UK and the 9-5 lifestyle and hit the road.
That was 2 years ago…
Celebrating Where I Started
Rather oddly I’ve landed back in Ecuador on the exact same day I did two year before eat the beginning of my current trip – it’s a twist of fate that I find quite amusing as I’m also surrounded by the same faces that shaped the beginning of my adventure and have been a part of it since.
When I stepped foot onto South America on January 5th 2011 I had a rough plan – I was to spend 3 months in Ecuador surf coaching and a month in Peru before bouncing back via the UK to explore Thailand and Laos before heading onward to New Zealand on a 2 year working holiday visa.
…and I think you’re all aware of how tits up that plan went!
At that point I had no idea how much my adventures and my blog would snowball. 2 month in Asia turned into 3 months, which eventually turned into 5 months before I randomly ended up in Morocco surf coaching.
I finally made it to New Zealand nearly a year later than planned – but it was a brief affair before I hit the road once more and eventually my simple plan has spiralled into 730 days, 15 countries and too many epic experiences to mention.
And how am I celebrating my 2 year milestone of my backpacking adventures?
Well how I try to spend almost everyday on the road – with an ice cold mojito, sand under my feet, sun on my back, plenty of surf and surrounded by friendly faces.
I could never have envisioned where a spontaneous decision could have ended up but I wouldn’t be where I am today without all the awesome people I’ve met on the road and of course all my awesome readers!
I think my biggest achievement on the road though has to be the fact my parents and grandparents now accept my lifestyle and the “when are you going to get a proper job and settle down” questions seem to have dried up!
People still me when I intend to stop travelling though but I can honestly say I have no reason to stop. I’m happy and as long as I can fund my adventures why would I stop?!
I honestly have no clue where this whole adventure will lead me but that’s the fun of long term travel – your life is a spontaneous one, full of surprises, twists, turns and challenges.
The last 2 years have been filled with smiles, uncertainty, good times, bad times and lonely times, surf, sun, snow, rain and every kind of situation and emotion you could imagine. I’ve worked hard but played harder to keep living the dream and there’s very little about it that I ever regret.
When I made the decision to hit the road I was full of doubt.
It turned out to be the best set of decisions I’ve ever made.
When most people have something epic they say that they wouldn’t change it for the world.
But I simply wouldn’t change what I’m doing because I have the world!
Bring on the next 2 years – I hope you enjoy the ride as much as I enjoy living and writing about it.