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Entries about preparation

Introduction to the Big Idea

How it all Began...

So here it is… the big trip. Meghan and I have been dreaming about this for three years and it is finally upon us. But let’s back up a little bit. First off let me say a little bit about Meghan. She has a passion for travel and has instilled that passion in me over the nine years we have been together. Prior to our relationship she had traveled all over South America and Mexico on family trips, studying abroad, volunteering, and vacationing.

Shortly after we started dating in January 2001 she left for a 5 month trip to Mexico and left it up to me to come find her. I did, and she showed me a new way of traveling that I would instantly come to love. I will always remember the first day of that trip, my first trip out of the country, chasing a beautiful woman whom I had only met a few months earlier. I was a little scared about traveling in a country where I did not speak the language and a little scared of traveling for so long with a new girlfriend. Meghan had been volunteering for two months and I was to meet her for a month of backpacking around southern Mexico before she would continue on to Central America with a friend. Without speaking a lick of Spanish I was able to make it out of the airport in Mexico City, hail a cab to the nearby bus station (at the gringo price) and secure a bus ticket to Oaxaca.

After a very long day of planes, taxis, and busses I found myself in Oaxaca at one of the cities three bus stations. It was shortly after dark, I was very hungry, and wanted to get to my final destination for the day. I found a payphone and dialed the phone number Meghan had given me before I left the states to let her know where to find me. No Answer. Actually not even no answer, no connection. Crap. Just as the panic started to take hold Meghan emerged from the crowded streets! It turned out the number I had was for a broken cell phone and Meghan instinctively picked the right train station at the right time. Wow. It was at that moment that I realized that everything would be just fine on this trip, and for all the other wild adventures to come.

So here we are nine years later. No longer fledgling college students trying to burn some steam before stepping out in to the “real world” of responsibilities and commitments but a married couple, choosing to live life to its fullest while we are young. We have rented the house, packed up all of our worldly positions, parked the cars, and are ready to head out.

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Posted by pmunson 08:28 Tagged preparation Comments (4)

Planing and Preparation

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A little insight to the planning and preparation for anyone interested:

Plane Tickets - there are many around the world (RTW) ticket providers out there that offer discounted rates on packaged flights around the world. Some are really ridged and come at a great price. Few are more flexible but must be used within a years time. We decided to spend a little more money on transportation and book as we go. This will give us the most flexibility and we do not think it is going to cost all that much more than a RTW ticket.

Immunizations - We have had all of our travel shots. Meghan was a little bit more prepared than I so I will list on my shots: Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid, Rabies, Japanese encephalitis, Polio, Yellow Fever, and Meningitis. Meghan’s Health Insurance at the hospital covered all of this and we received about $2,000 in Immunizations for $120!

Travel Insurance- We have bought an insurance policy that covers all of our major medical needs. After long deliberation and review of countless travel medical providers we settled on International Medical Group. This policy is strictly medical and does not cover travel expenses. As we are traveling without reservations we do not have much to lose.

Gear– We plan to travel as light as possible and bring only the essentials and a few key non-essentials. Meghan will be carrying a 45 liter pack with a small attachable day pack and I will be carrying a 55 liter pack. Both packs are smaller than the backpacks we would use for a few days of camping in the states. Obviously this is not the whole list but it will give you an idea:

Clothing - A rain jacket and pants, 1 micro fleece, 1 pair of pants, 1 pair of convertible pants/shorts, A swim suit, 2 t-shirts, 2 button down shirts, 3 pairs of undies, 3 pairs of socks, Tough walking sandals like Chaco’s, and day hikers. Meghan’s list will obviously be a little different than mine.
Gear – Travel towel, umbrella, hat, water bottle, Leatherman multi tool, super thin sleeping bag liners, first aid kit, wash kit, travel clothes line, sink plug, money belts,
Electronics – After a lot of convincing Meghan has allowed me to bring a small netbook laptop computer! In addition to this we are bringing our compact digital camera, an Ipod, and a super portable external hard drive.

All of our stuff and responsibilities at home - At 35 years of age I am proud to say I can still cram all of my worthless crap into a 5X7 storage unit! Ok some stuff is at Meghan's parents house. Other than that all of our bills are on auto pay and we have made special arrangements for our taxes and vehicle registrations.

OK everybody... let us know what we forgot!

A great websight that provided allot of insight is below. Check it out.

http://www.travelindependent.info/index.htm

Posted by pmunson 13:53 Tagged preparation Comments (1)

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