Big wheel keep on turnin’

I know we’ve been disappointing some folks with our less-that-thrilling hiatus in the US. We celebrated our 3 year anniversary of traveling by being… home. We turned a 2 month break into a three month break. Not exactly inspiring stuff.

Since we’re not really living up to the dream right now and back on US soil for another month, I’m going to post some things I’ve been thinking about putting up here for a while. Basically, just the things that people ask us over and over. Not that it will be interesting to everyone, but a few folks might find it helpful.

Up first will be info on different aspects of our trip.  Logistics, mainly. Not exactly a how-to series, and definitely not a claim of expertise, but just general info on how we’ve done stuff. Here’s what I can think of now and will post over the next few days.  Please let us know if there’s any other stuff to add to the list.

-finance, international banking

-security stuff


-gear (maybe – we’re under-geared by most standards)

-overlanding, camp sites, etc.

-the next 6 months in South America, our best guess

I think the number one question people ask us in person is “what’s the worst thing that’s happened so far?”  We’re always a little hesitant to answer, and I think it’s interesting that people are looking for the most negative thing first (answer: an attempted break-in in Grenada). But, if you really want to know where the dirtiest toilet was… go ahead and leave a comment below and we’ll answer it in an upcoming post.

12 thoughts on “Big wheel keep on turnin’

  • September 12, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    All of the above please. And “What was the BEST thing that has happened so far?”

  • September 12, 2012 at 9:43 AM

    Mary – The Galapagos comes to mind. Definitely not overrated. Maybe we should do a top-ten list? Heck, we could even do it country-by-country. Lot’s of top experiences…

  • September 12, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    I really want to know how much you’ve spent so far. I realize that’s a sensitive, personal topic and you don’t have to answer… and possibly you don’t know/haven’t tracked it, but as someone who always fantasizes about unsubscribing from the american dream and hitting the road I want to know how much to get outta dodge for a few years. 🙂

  • September 12, 2012 at 10:47 AM

    Bumblebus – we’ve been asked this a few times and still don’t have an exact answer. We’re not much for record keeping, and I’m not sure i really want to know. Angela replied to an email the other day and guessed $25K over the first two years. I’m not sure how accurate that number is – it does seem low – and probably doesn’t include shipping to Colombia and the Galapagos trip – but it *could* be about right. She has a business degree from UT, so be wary when using her estimates. 😉
    If you really want precise numbers, you can check the Bumfuzzle costs. They did a similar route, but traveled a lot faster. We contend that the slower you go, the cheaper it gets.

  • September 12, 2012 at 2:44 PM

    Jason I have a question regarding the 71 Bus you have motored with since the start.
    If you had to do it over again…would you choose another 71 VW Westy or would you try for a later fuel injected 75-79?
    Or a water cooled Vanagon?
    Would the parts situation be any better/worse in South America/Mexico?
    Just curious.

  • September 12, 2012 at 4:08 PM

    is it true that angela has had just 1 pair of underwear for the whole trip? i read that somewhere …. thanks!

  • September 13, 2012 at 9:11 AM


  • September 13, 2012 at 9:48 AM

    Angela, Jason, & Bode,

    You’re not really on a “break” but merely, a side trip — what we’d call a “Blue Blaze” on the Appalachian Trail — there’s no disappointment here .. We vagabonds, albeit, former, know the trip is still there whether on a side trip or BB….

    As I type this, the song “On the Road Again” just started playing…;-) … And all of a sudden I’m back in my old VW & am years younger!

  • September 13, 2012 at 7:08 PM

    Hi Jason, Angela –

    I like the idea of a top ten list! I’m wondering about what was the biggest surprise you’ve had over the past three years? Something that you just really didn’t expect or see coming? Also, since you both pulled out of the career path mid-stream, do you ever wonder or have concerns about getting back on the career track again?


  • September 17, 2012 at 1:45 AM

    aargh you got me with Bumfuzzle!!! Work is on slow mode once more 🙂

    Can you comment on the “relationship” part of travelling so long together? How did you find a good balance etc. Or did it come all automatically ?

  • September 22, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Yes please to a country-by-country top 10! I may have to branch out more now that the kids are getting a bit older and I know your recommendations will be in line with what we would really value!

  • September 23, 2012 at 10:03 PM

    Well, it should be very interesting !!Thanks for the informative article.

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