Coming home

We can’t believe it’s time, that’s it: we are leaving tomorrow and returning to the US. As we sit in our hotel room in Sydney we reflect back on our one year adventure around the world. It just seems that yesterday we were still at home planning and getting everything ready for our trip. But this last year has gone by in the blink of an eye.

We feel enriched by what we’ve seen, people we’ve met and what we have experienced. While we’ll be happy to see family and friends again, we have no real desire to come home and would rather continue being nomads exploring the world’s many wonders. But we know it must come to an end at some point.
We’ll have our memories and moments we will never forget. We’ve seen incredible wildlife, witnessed unbelievable scenery, learned so much about different countries and cultures and met some extraordinary people. How can we ever forget the roar of lions outside our tent in waking us up at 4am? Or the most beautiful female leopard we’ve ever laid our eyes on? Or the wild mustangs running free? How could we not remember swimming so close to the majestic whale sharks we could almost touch them? How do you ever erase from your memory the suffering of the Cambodian people, the kindness of strangers when we were in need and the most amazing sunsets and ocean colors?
We often hear people say we are lucky to be able to do such a trip but we disagree: yes we are lucky to be healthy enough to take this trip, that we agree with, but the trip itself didn’t happen by luck. Determination, patience, and discipline sprinkled with a little bit of risk-taking is what made it happen. For years, we drove our old cars, kept our old tube TV, did not go shopping or out to restaurants so we could reach our objective. We both worked really hard and were able to put money aside aggressively.
Everybody is capable of doing the same…it’s just how bad you want it and what your priorities are.
So how do you go back to a regular life after a year like this? Well, it’s a good question. We think it lays in our ability and desire to adapt. Time will tell if we are able to adapt back to “the normal life”
…and well if not, we’ll just have to plan another trip 🙂
We hope you enjoyed following us through this blog. We loved seeing your comments and sharing our stories and pictures with you. We are looking forward to seeing some of you soon and catching up.

James & Sylvie

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17 Responses to Coming home

  1. Dan Walls says:

    Sounds like an amazing adventure James and Sylvie! I enjoyed your posts and pictures especially all the wild life. Have a safe trip home. best regards, dan

  2. Heather says:

    I have definitely enjoyed reading your blog, and I’m so sad that your journey is ending (I’m dabbing my eyes with tissue after reading this post)! You really fully appreciate just how big this world is, and how many places there are to see, when you travel for months and months at a time, but still haven’t seen a remarkably huge number of countries and places, right? Anyhow, your blog has resulted in a bunch of new places being added to our travel list – thanks guys! For now, though, we’re headed to Kings Canyon and Sequoia Ntl. Parks for 2 weeks this weekend, we may head to Panama this winter, and we may head to Borneo next year in the spring – looking forward to these trips will have to keep us going! I’m sure you guys will start planning new trips as soon as you get home too! : )

    • speters14 says:

      Hi Heather, we have enjoyed reading all of your comments and comparing notes with what you’ve experienced in some of the same countries we visited. Sounds like you have a full year of trips planned already, that’s awesome…we are definitely going to need to do the same to keep us going. Have fun in Kings and Sequoia, can’t wait to see your pictures!

  3. David Levin says:

    Hi James and Sylvie. Remember we met at the Magnolia guesthouse in Hoi An. What a great time. Patricia and I so enjoyed reading your amazing adventures. In SE Asia we also visited many places on your route and spoke of you often. We ended our adventure at the end of May and are now back home in Toronto for the summer. We spend winters in Oaxaca Mexico; a bit closer to you. If you’re ever in our towns (Toronto or Oaxaca) we would just love to do some remembering together. Be well and all the very best. David and Pat.

  4. Chip says:

    You two have helped my year go by in the blink of eye as well! Thank you so much for sharing – all the details, the pictures and your emotions. You both have been greatly missed and I can’t wait to see your smiling faces back in the USA!

    Let me know when you have to lift a glass.

    • speters14 says:

      Well Hi there, was wondering if you were reading the blog…good to see we helped getting you through those WTF days. Let’s get together soon…may be next week? Send us a mail.

  5. says:

    Hi you two! We are also sad for you that your trip is coming to an end….(I say trip and not travels because I know travels will continue!) but we miss your presence and will be glad to see you back home … least for a while! We totally understand the priority aspect of what you described.
    I would be either living in a big house or driving an expensive car or retired, if we didn’t travel so much….but no regrets. We live one trip to the next! Coming home can be nice too.
    Maybe not going back to work…but just being able to hang and relax a bit in a comfortable environment that you are familiar with. Yes…sometimes familiar surroundings and familiar people can be nice…at least for a while. See you soon! When do you arrive? Valerie and Rupert
    Rupert could pick you up too….if you need it?

    • speters14 says:

      Hello birthday girl! We are glad to be able to see all of our friends and family soon but we don’t know what comfortable environment means anymore. So used to living out of a suitcase and not having a real agenda (other than finding the best beach or elusive wildlife) that we feel really odd and out of place here…at least for the moment. I am sure the routine of the “normal life” will swallow us soon.

  6. Kevin says:

    This was really fun to follow. I always looked forward to your next update, which always contained some amazing photos and experiences. You both have been very inspiring! Welcome home.

    • speters14 says:

      Thanks Kevin. Glad you found the blog posts interesting. It was our travel journal in a sense so we were not sure if people would find it boring or appealing. Hope all is well.

  7. Joel Lupro says:

    Its been great to follow your travels. Thanks for sharing your experiences. Sure will be great to see you back in Oregon again. You finished up with a great place: Australia!

  8. Lenore says:

    Welcome home soon! I have every blog post saved and am amazed at your adventurousness. I felt I was reading a book and looked forward to every time I got another chapter in my email box. I too will miss living vicariously through the two of you, but look forward to hearing about your travels from your own lips. Maybe it’s time to write “The book” to follow your adventures… : )

    • speters14 says:

      Hi Lenore, good to hear from you. It was an extraordinary year and we are depressed it ended but all good things come to an end. Writing a book would be great but I doubt it’s that easy to get published and make money off of it. You would have to be an amazing writer, like your mom 🙂

  9. This has been a great and wonderful trip — like the one I’ve always wanted to take but never did. I’ve save every blog you’ve sent and value them all. I’ve infrequently responded but this is no indication of my appreciation of them. Thank you.

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