I’ve been meeting a lot of new people this week attending events surrounding my partner’s brother’s wedding. When they ask me where I live, or what I do, I reply, “I am homeless and unemployed, and I’ve never been happier.”
When I go on to explain that James and I are preparing for a big trip, some seem excited, some seem confused, and others seem just plain terrified. But James and I – well, we couldn’t be happier.
A week ago we both quit our jobs, sold James’ truck, packed up everything we owned, and flew to Florida with nothing but our backpacks (and a suitcase full of dress clothes, but that is staying behind).
Florida has been a nice pit stop, a chance to connect or reconnect with James’ family, participate in a very important wedding, and try to relax and prepare for the next leg of our journey and our lives. But we’re both about ready to hit the road.
We decided to take this trip about three months ago after several casual discussions followed by one really great deal on one-way tickets (much to James’ surprise). Our trip is limited by another wedding that we are duty-bound to attend in Washington at the end of May, so we had to keep our trip short, at just under four months.
. . .
Jan 17th: My last day at work!
Fly San Jose, CA – Orlando, FL
Explored Orlando, Tavares, and Palm Coast. Caught up with family and friends.
Fly Fort Lauderdale, FL – Lima, Peru
Explore Lima for 3-4 days
Eat at Central Restaurante in Lima, a renowned restaurant with 3 Michelin Stars
Bus Arequipa, Peru – Arica, Chile
Hike and camp in Parque Nacional Lauca for 1-2 days
WWOOF at Vina Alpa, a sustainable vineyard near Salamanca, Chile for about 3 weeks
Bus Salamanca-Santiago-Buenos Aires, Argentina
4-5 days in Buenos Aires
Bus Buenos Aires-Cordoba-Mendoza-Santiago
Fly Santiago-Puerto Montt
Explore Puerto Montt, Chiloe, and Los Lagos region
Bus Puerto Montt-Puerto Ingeniero Ibanez
WWOOF at El Maitenal, a sustainable adventure-oriented community in the making, for about 3 weeks to learn about sustainable architecture in the “Earthship” style
Explore southern Patagonia and hike Torres del Paine
Fly Punta Arenas-Lima, Bus Lima-Cusco
Explore Cusco and acclimatize for 4-5 days
Four-day Inca Trail trek with Alpaca Expeditions, culminating in Machu Picchu
Explore Ollantaytambo, the Sacred Valley, and coastal Peru
Fly Lima-Mexico City
Explore Mexico City for 3 days
Fly Mexico City-Portland, OR
Train Portland-Olympia, WA for our friend’s wedding
Explore the Pacific Northwest
Train, carpool, or bus back down to Santa Cruz, CA
. . .
That’s our plan, or at least as much of a plan as we have. The only things set in stone are the flights, the WWOOF experiences, and the Inca Trail excursion. Everything else is off the cuff, to be followed to the letter or modified as we see fit. We fly out tomorrow and could not be more ready to start this big adventure!
Do you have any tips, tricks, or recommendations to share? What’s your favorite place in South America? What are you most excited to see photos of? Please share in the comments below!