So this is it.
Flights are booked.
Apartment is rented out.
Job is quit (in my case at least).
And things are packed.
And yet, it does not seem real that we are going to travel for a few months. While sitting on the couch, surrounded by cupboard boxes, moved furniture and our backpacks, it is difficult to comprehend that there is this huge adventure ahead of us. But how did it all begin?
It started with a little brainstorming idea. Johannes started expressing his desire to do a proper world trip, triggered by his travel to South America when he finished University a few years back. Luckily for him, his current employer is very cooperative and he was granted a 5 month leave, with a secured job upon his return. Both his manager and HR were very helpful and things were sorted out quickly, so a date was set.
In my case, everything had to be a little more complicated - as usual. Due to my limited position at Daimler Financial (5 years limitation but limited nevertheless), I was not eligible for a sabbatical. As I was working in a very big and complex project, it was brought to my attention that asking for a long-term leave was unpromising. All measures that were taken (and trust me, there were many, as I can be stubborn and fierce!) did not lead to a satisfying result so I decided to move on and do what we planned on doing, even if this meant quitting the job.
Looking at it now, it was probably the best decision. I think I even have to thank Johannes for that. Everybody who knows me knows that I have traveled the world and that I am a restless soul, but due to the fact that I have seen many places already, a year or half-year world trip was not necessarily number one on my agenda. Although I might have been agitated once or twice for having to turn everything upside down, truth is, that I might not have been aware of how much I actually needed this trip.
This year has been a rollercoaster all along, with the highest ups and the lowest downs, crazy work schedules, commuting, private matters, you name it. So at the end of the day, I think Johannes initial desire to travel the world was there at the perfect timing - before I even knew I would need it as well!
I don't know where I am going from here but I promise it won't be boring - David Bowie
Ok - unlike the good old David Bowie- we might not be Rock Legends, but we feel confident enough to quote his statement nevertheless! Most of the journey is not planned out yet, which adds to the adventure and excitement and gives us the possibility of being spontaneous.
The first stop , however , is already set and will be Sao Paolo in order to visit one of my best friends I first met in the summer of 2010.
Six years ago I was an Activity Leader at a language school in Bournemouth, UK, organizing tours for our 200 teenage students from all over the world which is where I met several Brazilian kids, including Mariana.
Three years ago, she came to Stuttgart for a visit and when her visit was coming to an end, she left us a postcard of Sao Paolo, 4 Reais for our trip to Brazil and an invitation on a sticky note to come to see her.
So now, three years later after our last meeting, this seemed like the perfect start for a world trip.
Our goal was to carry as few items with us as possible, to keep the travel light, both physically and emotionally (emotionally because I hate carrying stuff around X-) )
We managed to fit everything in a 13kg backpack for Johannes and a 9kg backpack for myself for the next months- that is an accomplishment!
So, off we go, see you soon!