Why this journey, I have asked myself?
This is a question that reoccurs in thoughts and conversations, ‘why?’ is a very essential question to ask yourself in many situations. This is also true for me in this situation, and for both me and Susanne as we talk a lot about our decision of quitting our jobs and leaving “normal” western society to go travelling on our bicycles. I do not think I have a clear answer on the direct question ‘why this journey?’. I do though think that there is a meaning with the decision, this meaning I will try to explain.
For me personally I have been asking myself ‘why?’ the last years regarding consumerism, capitalism, work and western society.
These questions create other questions, for example: what can be done differently? Here the journey has a role in as I will leave the society based expectations of status, materialism and non sustainable living. So when taking these parts out of my living, I expect to be able to reflect on these questions in a more reflective way. While I reflect on these questions, I will be met with many questions regarding my person; where I come from, what food I like. These questions will then teach me about myself and at the same time I will ask many people these same questions, with their answers I will learn. If we should draw a red line from above to where you are reading now, we see that Reflection and Learning are two big reasons for this journey. Let’s add these two reasons to a circle.
We need to expand our view away from daily life to understand what can be changed.
On the journey I will meet many different cultures. Cultural differences inspire me to play with my thoughts on daily life: what is culture? To me it is history, society, people, technology, religion and tradition. These aspects really light my interest in peoples culture and I expect to be much inspired by the different cultures we will meet along the way. Let’s add Culture and Inspiration to the next circle.
Travel has and is very important to me as I enjoy exploring and watching how other people live.
With this journey we will travel by bicycle. “Why by bicycle?”, you might think. There it was again the ‘why?’. During the last 10 years I have met several special people during my travels and some I am still in contact with. Ham is a guy I met at a rave party in the jungle of Koh Tao together with Sean, Andreas and Nick. These guys I traveled with for a while, Sean and Andreas for a longer period (could write a book of this period), anyway I got to know Ham, his name is really Hamada. This was in 2004, some years later I learned that Ham had done a big trip on his bicycle: ‘See his old blog’.
This stayed in my mind for some years and we have met several times since. During bicycle touring you move slowly through the areas you visit, close to the people and nature. This makes it a very careful and sustainable way of moving through the countries we visit. Let’s add People and Sustainability to a circle.
Adventure and physical challenge it will be, as we expect to bike 25.000 km visiting more than 20 countries.
Imagine how many different people we will meet. As we are camping and staying at Warmshower/Couchsurfing hosts along the way we will be introduced to the most direct experiences we can think of. Adventure can be extreme, it can also mean depth and this is where we will also concentrate on. We want to stop and stay where we are and give back through teaching, working, helping out, playing and joining communities. I would like to add adventure and bicycle journey to a circle.
Now I have joined some of the themes of the journey and hope that you have enjoyed reading a bit of my aspirations for this journey.