About Us

We’re headed to Vanuatu!

After a few months mulling over the possibility of buying a caravan and driving around Australia this January, we’ve completely changed our minds last-minute and decided to jet off for a 3-week Pacific Island holiday instead.

Vanuatu is known as a more rugged option in the Pacific Islands, while still providing a lot of options for travellers. We plan to move at a nice, relaxed pace (in direct contrast to our usual 2-week sprints around countries like Mongolia and Myanmar) as we explore the three main islands in Vanuatu.

If you’re interested in learning more about Vanuatu, check out these blog posts and articles that we’ve consulted for ideas:

Free Your Mind Travel, the most useful set of posts we’ve found, with lots of little-known advice and budget-conscious tips.

Blank Canvas Voyage, who have a few useful posts about Efate and Tanna.

Full of Living, a guide to Port Vila.

Tourist Destinations, with a general overview of the country.

And my favourite, The Guardian has a piece on a more luxurious version of a Vanuatu holiday, but reading it made me very excited for our trip!

Stay tuned for updates after this trip– I’m still not sure about the direction our blog will take in 2017, given that a long-term trip doesn’t look feasible until 2018, but I think given how few resources we’ve found that explain travellers’ experiences in Vanuatu, we may have to fill that void with some more blog posts of our own.

 

 

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Changing plans: when expat realities interfere with dreams of travel

In our About Us section, we’ve alluded to the fact that we’ve been quietly dreaming about a BIG trip. As in, leave jobs and lives and material possessions behind and spend an entire year being untethered and able to travel at our own pace kind of big.

Australia is such a great place to live and work when you have goals like ours, because it’s both common and accepted to take long stretches of time off from your job to travel and still have that job to return to. In most industries here, there isn’t a need to quit your job to travel the world. So we felt like we were perfectly set up to take this leap in 2017.

Then… real life intervenes. Doesn’t it always?

We’re incredibly lucky to have had a (mostly) smooth and heartache-free immigration process here in Australia. It’s been very expensive, time-consuming, and stressful, but we’re just about at the point where we both have dual citizenship (Canada-Australia for me and Italy-Australia for him).

But that process of getting citizenship, understandably enough, takes time. I think during our initial trip-planning stages, this was time we didn’t really estimate correctly– we kind of assumed it would all work itself out in time. Until we realised about a week ago that it wouldn’t. There just wasn’t any way to stay in Australia until we both had citizenship AND go on a yearlong trip starting in January or April 2017.

Remember how M. is overseas in Europe right now? Yeah… that was fun, having a huge life-changing/relationship-changing discussion over Facebook chat with a major time difference. But we did some thinking on our own and some talking it out together and we decided that we would have to postpone the big trip until 2018.

So now here I am, waist-deep in a travel blog and we’ve decided not to travel for another year! I feel a bit ridiculous.

This was the point in the year where I’d planned to start posting updates on our planning process. We were meant to be giving away our furniture and asking for travel gear for Christmas right about now. Instead we’re wondering whether we should finally upgrade our cars (mine is from 1993 and may not last another year…) and trying to decide what kind of couch to buy when we move out of our houseshares.

Ultimately, though, this blog is intended to share a snapshot of our real lives as expats and travellers, and this is our real life. I guess there’s nothing much more realistic than having to wait to do a big trip because you need to stay in the country to get dual citizenship!

Anyway, lovely readers, I’ll still be blogging. I think this way we’ll be able to share even more– more about the immigration process, more about the trip-organising process, more about how we balance living our day-to-day lives while still planning to travel as much as we can.

We’re wide open for time and ideas now that our plans have changed– tell us, what kind of content would you like to see us write about in the next year?

How much travel is too much travel?

So here I am with a brand-new travel blog, and I’m asking myself what seems like a pretty silly question: am I travelling too much?

The answer should be a resounding never! But let’s be real: I am not a highly-paid (or low-ly paid, for that matter), media-savvy digital nomad whose travels are being bankrolled by their hard work on the road. When I travel, it’s out of my own pocket.

Part of my question is, am I getting to the point where those pockets have limited depth? Even with some money saved, should I really be spending it all on travel?

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On Travel & Reading: Italo Calvino’s If On A Winter’s Night A Traveller

When we were in Mongolia, I finally got around to finishing the gorgeous book that M. gave me for my birthday (*cough* two years ago *cough*), Italo Calvino’s If On A Winter’s Night A Traveller.

Why don’t English speakers read more books originally written in different languages? It’s something I didn’t considered before dating a European. Almost every other language reads Shakespeare (many countries read him more than Australian students do!), yet the only time I ever read authors that weren’t British, American, or Canadian  was in my French classes, in their original French. We English-speakers miss a huge chunk of the world’s literature by ignoring translations.

Anyway, back to Calvino. (more…)

What We Wish We’d Known About Myanmar

If you’re planning a trip to Myanmar, we have so much advice. It’s been two years since we went and things change at a lightning-fast pace there, but most of our tips should still be relevant.

Read on to learn about the mistakes we made in Myanmar so that you can avoid them!

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