Nic and Cat are off for six moths for an amazing trip around the world. We are putting the day jobs on hold, binning the mobile phones and taking off to venture where nobody has ever been before. Well, we'll stick to the main tourist routes, obviously.
This trip has been in our minds for the last couple of years and we've been planning it for about a year. We finally settled on a route, which will take us through the following countries before our return in May 2009 - just in time for the great British Summer!: Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia (Bali), Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia and Peru. And to top it off, a two hour stopover at Madrid on the way back!
In an effort to avoid sending out group emails to people who frankly aren't interested in what we're up to, we will be posting regular updates and photos on here so anyone who wants to hear our tales can log on! Either check back to see when we've added new stuff or subscribe to the blog! Updates may be a bit sporadic but bear with us, we're new to this.
Please please also get in touch with us, we'd love to hear from you - either send us a message on here or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (I'm sure you can work out which address is Cat's!)
May 22nd 2009
A very quick entry for everyone nervously biting their fingernails in anticipation. We are home! Got back last night to smiling faces at Heathrow and we're both now neatly tucked up at our opposite ends of the country desperately trying to sort out exciting things like insurance, and finding a flat. See you soon! Nic... read more
May 19th 2009
At the end of the last installment I was a bit hacked off to say the least and was just starting to come to terms with being a victim of crime. We have both just about pulled ourselves through now, and we weren’t even offered the services of Victim Support. It happened so quickly as we were walking down one of Arequipa’s many dodgy streets. I felt a tug on the camera case strap and for some reason I thought Catherine was playing around, but turned to see some total scum running away, our one month old camera in hand. Instinct kicked in and I was hot on his heels, shouting some unrepeatable obscenities in English, and kindly requesting the locals to apprehend the assailant, again in English for some reason. Surprisingly they didn’t help. It ... read more
May 13th 2009
Well, I’m sure everyone will be very pleased and excited to hear that we survived the dreaded Inca Trail, and it was actually not as tough as we had expected. It started on Friday when we were rudely awoken by our alarm clock at half past four, ready to be picked up and taken to the start of the trail. My cousin Sarah and her friends Lauren, Ruth and MJ were already on the bus and as we boarded we desperately tried to look at the rest of the 16 trekkers in the feint hope that there would be a big fatty or an old fogie that would be the slow one. Annoyingly, everyone looked relatively young and fit. We tried to cram in some last minute sleep on the way there but it was interrupted ... read more
May 7th 2009
Just a little one (well it should’ve been) before we set off on the Inca trail tomorrow! Which, since we’re on the subject, I’m absolutely dreading! I’m sure after the four days I’ll be raving about how amazing it was but, after all the good life and steak eating of the past five and a half months, we’re so unfit and all I can manage to think about at the minute is that it’s going to hurt! A lot. Does anyone know any Rick Waller types or one legged enthusiastic dwarfs who’ve completed it to make me feel better? We went to the office of Peru Trek yesterday in Cuzco to part with more of our dwindling funds and we had a briefing with one of the guides, informing us of the five and a half ... read more
May 1st 2009
We had a decent couple of days in the attractive city of Sucre, exploring and recharging the batteries after the relative trauma of the Potosi mining experience. The town is full of colonial buildings all painted in white. Despite it‘s history, it had a much more modern feel to it than the other places we’d visited in Bolivia, with good shops and tourist facilities and a massive group of teenagers hanging around in the main square like you’d find in any self-respecting British town or city. Whilst we were there we took the opportunity to do a bit of the old cultural stuff, with a visit to the extremely detailed, if not way too detailed, textile museum (brilliant for the textile enthusiast, not quite so for us) and La Casa de la Libertad, where Bolvia’s Declaration ... read more
April 21st 2009
We left Buenos Aires for the third and final time the day after our short trip to the Iguazu Falls. As we boarded another luxury bus, this time bound for Salta, we were handed some leaflets in Spanish and a huge can of insect repellent each. At first we thought they’d come back around asking for money, like people seem to do in Argentina, but in fact it was a freebie from the government, and a warning that we were heading for a Dengue Fever area. It was a bit disconcerting and I wasn’t looking forward to leaving the comfort of first class travel only to be bitten by an infested insect, which I became convinced would happen. Luckily, it hasn’t, so far. On our first night in the city we booked a table at a ... read more
April 9th 2009
Think Nic left off in Buenos Aires, when we were just on our way to tango, so I’ll pick up from there! Excuse me if my writing is non-sensical; some crazy young punk is playing unbelievably loud slash/death metal (whatever the kids call it these days) which may hinder my creative flow! Our Tango evening kicked off with a lesson. We thought it was strangely quiet, but realised that turning up when Argentina were playing in a World Cup qualifier with Maradona in charge for the first time may not have been the best idea! Nic, bless him, was really pleased with his Tango skills, and anyone who’s ever seen Nic’s size 12’s dance may laugh , but he wasn’t so bad, and compared to the other two particularly unfortunate examples of the male species there, ... read more
March 28th 2009
After writing the last entry we went out to see Mendoza, which is a small and leafy city with wide tree lined avenues and lots of green space. Being a Saturday night the main square, Plaza Independencia, was buzzing with drummers, dancers, jugglers and the token traditional Peruvian pipe band (who were uncannily similar to a group who used to ply their trade in Plymouth every weekend). There was also a huge Harley Davidson convention going on, which brought hundreds of gleaming and impressive motors but also their beefy moustachioed owners and a full regiment of the local boys in blue. The police were obviously expecting a bit of trouble, as they were marching across the square in full riot gear, some armed with head to toe shields, others with sniper guns. In Britain it would ... read more
March 22nd 2009
We had the longest day of our lives on Saturday, weighing in at a long and testing 40 hours, as we flew back in time from Auckland across the International Date Line to Santiago. Not only did we go east and end up in The West, but we arrived in Chile five hours before we left New Zealand. We managed to source some good exit seats on the 11 hour flight across the Pacific but Catherine did have to sit next to two slightly odd smelling, wine guzzling light aircraft enthusiasts. I thought my Dad was keen but these two spent almost the whole flight discussing the various merits of different single engine Cessnas and getting a bit too excited by some pictures of naked young planes at the back of their magazine. Still, they were ... read more
March 13th 2009
It has been a while since the last blog and we have been pretty much non-stop since then so sit back, buckle in and get the painkillers ready as this may be a bit lengthy! The skydive was where Catherine left off last time, so that’s where I’ll pick up. The feeling of falling at 200 kph was amazing and like nothing I could have imagined. When the parachute opened it all went silent and we were gliding peacefully down above the airfield. Despite the rather uncomfortable tightness around my crotch (from the harness) and the horrendous pain in my ears, it was brilliant to take in the views in such a serene way - a big contrast to the heart pounding white noise of the previous 10,000 feet. As Catherine has already mentioned, nausea and ... read more