Monday, September 12, 2005

Anniversary Edition

Wow. It was a year ago today that I set off from London to Mexico to start this trip and the last 365 days have really flown by. When I was planning the trip I didn't think I'd be here now ... in fact I thought I'd be well past here and somewhere in India. I've learnt that there's far more to see and that you should take your time. I mean, who would have thought that you could spend a whole month in Laos and still not see everything! Yep, the trip seems to keep getting longer and longer every time I try and plan ahead, something my parents probably aren't too chuffed with.

I thought I'd summarise my trip so far in a few figures. So up until now I've visited 14 countries (15 if you count Hutt River Province) and 4 continents. During my year I've also read 29 books, many of which I probably would not have read back home. I've spent 23 nights in buses, trains or trucks (I thought it would be more). As for how much time I've actually spent travelling i.e. sitting in buses, trains, etc., I'd rather not know really, but I think 3 months would be a reasonable guestimate. And although I'm keeping a note of how much I spend I haven't totalled it up, but I think 6,000 pounds (about $10,000 US) would be about right (which is about as much as I spend in a year back home). I've visited some 36 UNESCO world heritage sights (need to do better next year), countless temples and churches, a collection of museums and a fair few national parks. I've managed to learn to speak Spanish (something I'm more than a little proud of) and count in Thai and Chinese (I've already forgotten the little Viet I picked up). But, most importantly I think, I think I've got a better idea of world history and therefore the reason why we (people in general) are where we're at. I also hope I've got a little more tolerance towards people, though that may be wishful thinking.

So, what's planned for the coming year? Well, I'd dearly like to make it all the way back home overland and not have to fly unless it's absolutely necessary (which it may be to get to Sri Lanka and Myanmar), which may mean that I'll be writing another one of these bloody anniversary posts! More specifically, from here in eastern China I want to make my west and cross over into Pakistan over the Khunjerab pass; then I'd spend a bit of time in the subcontinent before heading back through Pakistan and into Iran. From there it's over the Caucasus and into Turkey ... and then I'm not sure. But that's already far too much planning already, god knows my plans will change a countless number of times by then. Though at least now you can have a wee look at the map and check out the proposed itinerary.

Well, that's enough maudlin from me; I'm off to check out some more museums. Orale bueyes, y hasta la proxima vez.

No comments: