Happy New Year!
This is an overdue post to round off our world trip, but since it's so late I thought I'd make it a short(!) round up of the year.
We started Famille Summerbelle in February 2008. Whichever way we look at it, we've had a great start - we've learnt lots, we've made some great new friends (with plenty of good advice), we've got bags of inspiration for 2009 and we've even sold a thing or two. We really hope that we can make it our future...
Our only real sad news was that we lost Julie's uncle Mike. He has left a very big hole, but I guess that just goes to show how great he was. I'd like to be missed as much as he is.
So this trip we did....it really was as great, inspiring and fulfilling as we tried to make it sound. I'd highly recommend it to anyone, for a few very good reasons:
1. It doesn't cost anything like as much as you think. Once you factor your every day living costs (especially for folk like us who live in the city) it doesn't work out much different. If you can rent or sell your apartment then it's possible to even make money as you go. The flight costs a bit, but that isn't so different to any long haul journey.
2. Nothing much changes whilst you're away. Even in a massive financial crisis like now, it seems life at home carries on the same (which is reassuring!).
3. Technology is brilliant. Skype, email (and blogs!) can help keep in touch with all of your loved ones - AND continue to run a business!!
4. I got to spend a lot of time with my family. I'd rather do it now than make up for lost time when I'm 65.
5. Traveling with kids is a real joy, and lots of people are doing it (yes, you read that right!). We met plenty of families along the way and they all said the same thing - it's not just easy it's great fun. Every train trip, every bus ride was an adventure and were we on our own I can't imagine it would have been quite as much fun.
6. Decisions now feel easier. Or maybe not easier but much more fun.
7. It makes you want to do it again. Not every year, but soon...!
Someone in New Zealand recommended to me a book by Tim Ferris called The 4 Hour Work Week. If you have even the slightest urge to change your life and take on an adventure I highly recommend it.
Here's to 2009 and the end of the beginning...