So why no South America? I hear you ask. Well, its down to a number of reasons.
- No hablamos Espanol - Whilst we were always planning on learning Spanish when we arrived (in fact Anth had successfully devoted time in the past months to preparing) the practical implications of speaking little Spanish became apparent last month when we met with a few of the folks in Washington DC managing the South American programs of my old employer Pact. We also started examining some of the bad attitudes that we picked up in Cambodia of "Hey, we're white - isn't that enough for a job?!" after discussing just how well qualified the people of Ecuador are to fix their own problems (who would have thought huh?).
- It's time to go back to school. We both talk about doing more study in the future, but never really deciding when or what. I am going to be first, and am hoping to start a Masters degree in the new year and Anth is planning on doing the same the following year.
- Whilst its been an amazing trip, we are tired of being of travelling (see below)
Back to the last few months though - its hard to describe our travels in any other way than incredible. We've been bloody lucky to see the crazy places that we have, and to have caught up with so many wonderful friends and family along the way. As amazing as it has been though, we are both absolutely ready to stop. When you start travelling its easy to underestimate how exhausting it is to be sleeping in different places every night, always trying to find the cheapest way to do things, having virtually no personal space, orienting ourselves to new food, places and langauges and sitting on endless bus journeys (of which there have been many). We are both really looking forward to having a familiar couch to call our own and a kitchen to prepare food in how and when we desire! I don't want to sound like we are complaining, but there is always a risk that when you only show pictures of yourselves looking happy in beautiful places you're not painting the full picture of what its like to travel for this long.
A big thanks to all of you that have met up with us, fed us and sheltered us in the last few months - we are both incredibly grateful. We'll try to keep things a bit more up to date in the next few months in Cambodia and as we find some less-temporary dwellings (sorry - I couldn't help myself).