Forgot to get this up sooner. A few weeks ago I went on a day hike with a couple of my friends in Harriman State Park, NY. It was great fun, and our guides, Joe and Missy, from Wilderness Rocks were knowledgeable and a lot of fun! I will be planning many more of these hikes leading up to my trip to prepare myself.
Once I get my pack and boots I will take them for a few test runs!
I’m beginning to put together my gear list for the Himalayan hiking part of my trip. Finding great information on hikingdude.com. If you are planning a hike in the near future you should definitely check it out. I’m building out my list in Google docs so that I can share it when I’m ready…remember the travel registry idea?! Right now I have 3 different lists, Gear - First Aid - Other/Misc.
I spoke to a lovely woman today from Australia. She brought a very sad fact to my attention, not shocking, just sad. She was telling me all about how she worked for a bank in Australia and is now here on a working visa employed as a technologist. I in turn divulged my plans to travel the world for a year, Australia being one of my main stops. She gave me such a strange look and said, “Well…that is very un-American of you!” She went on to describe how an Australian resume is full of holes because traveling is such a common thing. 8 months here, 3 weeks there, companies are so used to this behavior that many will hold positions, like taking a sabbatical, so the person has a job to come back to. Americans on the other side of the spectrum work their lives away, sometimes not even taking their measly 2 weeks of vacation each year. To take a sabbatical requires a 5-10 year commitment, sometimes more, to a single company. It’s shameful in my eyes, although I recognize not everyone may agree with me. Some people thrive in this “American” working environment.
I’ve wondered myself about what I will be coming back to when I return from my travels. I’ve only been with my company for 3 years so I can be sure I will not be granted a year long sabbatical. My company does however invest a lot in their employees, so if I leave on good terms there is a good chance they would find some opportunity for me. That’s if I even want to jump back into the daily grind. What if traveling just fits. I’d love to find a way to live on my own terms and continue my travels if I so choose. That’s my “American” dream :)
I visited my local Paragon Sports yesterday and was blown away with sticker shock! In the back of my head I knew this was coming, but still I found myself totally unprepared for cost of the gear I will be needing. This is going to require some strategic thinking, because the last thing I want to do is dip into my travel budget. Most of the items fall somewhere between $100-$300, so this could add up to quite a bit. First things first, I have to put together a legitimate packing list, with actual products and prices. Once I have that together I will be sending the list to my friends and family, kind of like a travel registry. I have a birthday coming up in July and then there’s Christmas, so I will tell everyone that if they are planning on buying me anything please make it from the list, or feel free to make a monetary donation. I will also be trying to buy one item a month, or every other month if I have to make a very expensive purchase. This should hopefully get me most of what I need by the time I’m ready to leave. Additionally, maybe I will have a departure party where I can ask everyone to bring a low cost travel item.
On another note, browsing the hiking and camping section was really eye opening. There are some really amazing products out there. For instance, sleeping pads and bags that fold up to practically nothing and are incredibly light weight, and packs that are water, extreme heat and cold resistant. This could be fun!