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Posted by Jessica on Sep 15, 2010
Speaking at Meet, Plan, Go!

Tim and I had the pleasure of speaking on a panel of "travel experts" last night at Boston's Meet, Plan, Go event! It was a nationwide conversation with meetings taking place in 12 other cities with a goal of not only encouraging more folks to take a career break and travel the world, but to show them it can be done!

When Tim and I jumped on board the panel, we were hopeful that by sharing our travel story we would help inspire more people to travel. (And we're still hopeful that happened!) What we had no way of knowing is that we'd come away from last night feeling just as inspired. Listening to the other panelists was really wonderful and it was interesting to hear how our stories overlapped and differed. (And it gave us some wonderful ideas for things we want to do next!) And what truly inspired us was talking to everyone in the room, hearing their dreams to see the world, and feeling like a part of something really positive.

Welcome to our little home on the web

We'd like to give a great big hello to any new readers of our humble little travel website! We love nothing more than helping out fellow travelers, whether you're an armchair traveler or an old-school backpacking veteran. And we'd love nothing more than if you'd stayed for awhile, enjoy reading our stories, partake in a bit of conversation, and dream about making your travel story come to life!

And before you wonder what we're getting out of all of this: our blog isn't monetized, so we aren't making money when you click on pages and we don't have Google ads or the like. We're simply writing here for the love of travel and the joy of helping others! And whether folks are thinking about taking an around-the-world trip, or a weekend jaunt to a European city, or simply walking around their hometown with a fresh perspective, we hope to help inspire more people to see more of the world around them.

So our fingers are crossed that a few folks from the meeting last night are reading this right now looking for even more inspiration. (And if you are reading, drop us a comment or an email and say hello!) And for those folks who didn't get a chance to attend a Meet, Plan, Go event last night, well, we're super hopeful you're here looking for a bit of inspiration too. (Or, at the very least, just a bit of distraction from that cubicle-filled work day!)

What next?

Now, if it's your first time here, you'll probably want a few stories to get you started, right? Well, you can learn more about two traveling hedgehogs or take a whirl through a boatload of FAQs. Or you can read in chronological order all about our 18 month RTW trip and just check out stories about some of the places we've been!

And if all that leaves you scratching your head, we've picked out a few of our favorite stories below that you might enjoy reading when your boss isn't looking. (Don't worry, we won't tell!)

Stories to feed the daydreamers
The Lost City of Machu Picchu
Magic Memories
A Day in Göreme
An Afternoon at the Haunted Hotel
Three Kilos of Fruit and an Origami Pig
Do You Know About Love?

Stories to feed the planners
Your Mileage May Vary
Top 13 Tips for a Long Bus Ride
In Defense of Traveling Your Way
Planning Your RTW: How to Know Where to Go
Top 9 Tips to Tackle Homesickness
Five Tips for Enjoying Cambodia

Stories that share a bit more about us
On Bended Knee
Happily Ever After
The Stuffy Who Fell on the Floor
In Five Years

The world is out there...

I mentioned above how Tim and I feel like we were part of something truly positive with Meet, Plan, Go. And that's one point that Tim and I might not have gotten a chance to address last night: the world is a more positive, more giving, more accepting, and even more awesome a place than any nightly newscast will ever lead you to believe. We can count on one hand the number of mean people or negative experiences we've had while traveling, but we can't even begin to count the number of lovely people and breathtaking moments we've experienced. So try to keep that in mind if you've been dreaming about an international trip but one of the things holding you back is whether or not you'll be safe. The world is a beautiful and welcoming place...and it's just waiting for you to come see it!

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September 15, 2010 at 12:08pm
Sounds like a great panel. I'm not surprised that you guys were inspired, too. If only I weren't so addicted to my creature comforts.
:)
September 15, 2010 at 12:15pm
It was a really fun group of people! And everyone on the panel had something different to offer, so I'm super hopeful that the wide variety of stories was helpful to folks.

"…If only I weren't so addicted to my creature comforts…"

It's a habit we're clearly going to have to break you from! ;)

sheila
September 15, 2010 at 12:31pm
Jess and Tim were the inspiration for us to travel back pack style…and it is so freeing not fighting at the luggage carousel! Now they have been challenged to help us travel with our 4 month old – the challenge has been thrown down but will they rise to the occasion? Stay tuned to find out! Love you guys!Sheila, Jeff and Jacob
September 15, 2010 at 6:04pm
LOL! One of my new missions in life is to figure out how folks can travel *lightly* with infants. We're gonna' figure it out! I have a good feeling about it. :)
Shana
September 16, 2010 at 11:33pm
Love the index & the inspirations :)
September 17, 2010 at 9:59am
Thanks, Shana! It was so hard picking just a handful of stories to share in this post…it felt like trying to choose our favorite child or something! :)
September 17, 2010 at 12:31pm
Hi, Jessica and Tim --

It was so nice meeting you guys at Meet Plan Go and hearing about your adventures! Thanks for your Cambodia tips.

I've subscribed to your feed. Looking forward to hearing more! :)

September 18, 2010 at 8:47am
Hey Kate! It was great meeting you too! And we're hopeful Cambodia speaks to you as much as it did to us. Enjoy all your travels through this beautiful world, and stay in touch!
Maggie
September 20, 2010 at 3:35pm
I'm so glad you two had a great time at the Meet, Plan, Go event. I find it absolutely fascinating how you two find the world to be a better more positive place now that you've been travleing than you did way back in the beginging. I sadly do not entirely see the world as a positive place, but maybne when Emily and I are able to travel I'll change my mindset. Thanks for the stories and for being wonderful people. (((hugs)))
September 21, 2010 at 9:49am
A dear friend once told us that the world is filled with a vast majority of wonderful people, but that there are a few asses. Sadly, it's the asses who make the most noise. And they can trick us all into thinking the world is a bad place.

But don't listen to them, Maggie. Listen to your heart when you spend time with Emily. Listen to your eyes when you see someone do a random act of kindness for a stranger – even the littlest of things, like helping someone pick up something they dropped on the sidewalk. Listen to your ears when you hear Thomas laughing in the other room at something your Dad is doing. I promise the world is a positive, beautiful place…and you don't even have to travel to see it. :)

Deb
September 28, 2010 at 2:59pm
Way to go guys! Encouraging others to travel is awesome :)
I would like to concur that the world is full of wonderful people. I have found that every culture around the world has the same core values towards family, friends, and being good people at heart. I've met very few of the "asses" in my travels over the past 20-odd years – as Jessica said, I could probably count them on one hand. Warm, caring, wonderfully helpful and giving people – countless!
September 28, 2010 at 3:29pm

I have found that every culture around the world has the same core values towards family, friends, and being good people at heart.

That's really it in a nutshell! No matter the differences that might lay between cultures and countries and regions, those fundamental commonalities run so much deeper. :)

I was chatting with one prospective backpacker at the Meet, Plan, Go event who asked what Tim and I do when we're some place where we don't speak the language at all. After the usual "we always try to learn a few words in the local language" explanation, I mentioned that there's also a basic human language – whether that means smiling or giggling or pantomiming or what have you – and that it's much easier to be understood than a lot of people might anticipate! It's all pretty neat stuff. :)


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