Sunday, September 27, 2009

Happy Anniversary to the Adventure.

I don't usually post twice in one day, but today is special. Today marks one year since I left the United States of America to begin this trip. Since that time I've hit six continents, and depending on how you count them, some 35 countries. And I'm not done yet.

I know I told some of the people reading at parties before I left that I would travel either for a year, or until my money ran out, whichever came first. I guess I was wrong. I left with the intention of hitting at least six of the seven continents, (really just a concession that Antarctica might not be realistic, but still). I've hit my goals. By all rights, I should be looking for a train and ferry into London and then getting a flight home from Heathrow. Set down the backpack, pet my cats, put my watch back on, slip an iPod back into a jeans pocket and stay put like someone normal for a change. I'm not saying that's not going to happen. But I will say it's not happening today.

So here's the game plan from here. I said six continents, that's true, but only one of the seven continents was ever optional, and it was not Africa. I have plans to meet several people here in Europe, including my parents, brother, sister-in-law and oldest niece, and then, with any luck, I'll head across Turkey into the Middle East, drop into Egypt, and see how hard and far I can get from there. Any advice about getting around Africa, internal flights, overlanding, anything, would be most welcome. I've got contacts now in Uganda, Namibia, and South Africa, and am always looking for more elsewhere.

Last but in no way least, a million thanks to all the friends, family who have been so generous and patient with this crazy kid wandering around all the other sides of the world. This has been everything I've hoped for and a lot more besides, and thanks to your support, it's not over yet.


  1. Happy Anniversary! You're living the adventure so many wish to have, but don't have the courage to undertake. Continued safe travels!

  2. thank god, I thought you were going to skip Africa.
    Internal flights are tricky, a lot of times you'll have to fly back to Europe and then back in to Africa, which is silly. I would suggest overland, and pretty much each country has it's own technique for how they deal with travelling. But usually the locals are more than happy to help you out.
    If you want contacts in Senegal, let me know. I have some great friends there who would, I'm sure, love to talk to you.
    Happy Anniversary! That's so fantastic :)

  3. Happy anniversary Joel!

    Doesn't it feel amazing to get out there and do it? Have fun in Africa! I will be there next summer and I can't wait!

    Happy travels,

  4. Brian- Thank you and likewise for when you hit the road again (you now you will if you haven't already)

    Anna- Skip Africa? You kidding me? at this point it would take something really serious for me to do that, and even if that happened I'd at *least* hit Morocco on my way home. Senegal could be tricky, I'm mostly concentrating on friends in Eastern and Southern Africa, and the stuff I've heard about bordering countries isn't encouraging. Still, if I'm headed that way, I will definitely let you know!

    Grant- Thanks a lot, and best of luck with the new book!

  5. do NOT skip Africa.. would be a huge mistake.. !!!
    did you check ? I do recommend overlanding, you will travel faster and safer and can roughly travel from Kenya to South Africa in 50+ days.
    Not sure how the best way is to travel in North Africa though...
    Good luck!!!!!