Even with the double negative, I think it's a decent quote... and it turns out Kimbo and I still like each other. Travelling with a companion for 350+ days straight is tough at times, but also very rewarding as you learn more about each other and grow and love and learn patience. So, in the end I think we did alright.
So this is our last post... I'll be busy (skiing, mostly) and if anyone has any questions, suggestions, or just wants to talk, we're available anytime... feel free to comment or e-mail us.
This year has been a special year for us and we feel quite privileged to have taken this opportunity to travel and share our experience with y'all. We learned a lot on this trip... a lot about local issues we don't pay attention to in the US, that the world is a big place (we only went to 8 countries), and that we really like fruit shakes and monkeys...
However, the biggest lesson of this year was of humanity. Caught in a hail storm and biking during the heat wave in Australia, lost in the streets of Seoul, or watching Lek sing to one of the baby elephants; we experienced kindness and generosity at every turn; no matter their religion (or no religion), race, or income. Through this experience, we hope to repay everyone's hospitality in the years to come, and vow to keep paying it forward to make this world a better place and maintain amity (couldn't avoid the cheese).
Anyway, here's the short list of thanx to everyone who helped us out this year... I'm sure we missed a few folks here so I'll apoligize beforehand. First a big "thank you" to every participant/host on warmshowers.org, couchsurfing.org, and WWOOF.org
- Jeff, our warmshowers host in Sydney - going sailing on my birthday was quite a highlight.
- Catroina, our warmshowers host in Kirrawee - loved your place, and enjoyed the yoga session.
- The Woinarski's for hosting us in Berry.
- Frank and Sue, who took us in when we got caught in a freak hail storm.
- Peter on Raymond Island from saving us from the heat.
- Jim and Heather - the best WWOOFing hosts on the planet.
- Kevin and Robin Ralston in Melbourne - Y'all are awesome... and much more mature than your bro... and me for that matter. Hope you visit the Bay Area soon.
- Neil Mann - thank you for accomodating us on such short notice.
- Roman, an inspiration to us as we met him right after he had just biked across the Nullabor plain...
- To Kate who we spent a few magical weeks kayaking, diving, snorkeling, and being chased by Cassowaries...
- To Frances and Daniel for hosting us after we realized on the plane that we're headed to Gold Coast, not Brisbane...
- Greg and Dorothy- our warmshowers hosts in Hobart.
- Arile - the most determined cyclist I will ever meet, I'm sure. Took everything one step at a time... we especially enjoyed our day at Wineglass Bay with you.
- Tony and Amy, a very friendly couple, and Amy the first Aboriginie we got to talk to for a while... very inspiring lady... will remember you always.
- The fellow hikers we met on the Overland Track...especially the Aussies who kept calling me "marathon boy"; Tadashi, a fellow Japanese hiker; Jonas and Joe, who gave us a lift after we missed the bus as I had to run back to get my tent; and the Germans who paid the tab at the bar.
- Vicky and Malcom - our warmshowers hosts in Lonnie, I know we kinda over stayed our welcome, and after selling our bike we weren't really "touring" but y'all were amazing hosts...and we may have to go back just for your chutney and good company.
- Our friends who helped break in the Shevanigan the first 2 weeks of our trip! Julie, Bako, Jenny, and Tim.
- To the Teears, who served us a feast in Christchurch.
- Max! - our favorite frenchman, hope your career in Madagascar goes well.
- Jon - our WWOOF host in Queenstown... runs a tight ship... hope you're still healthy... thanx for making Kevin cut the frozen chicken, that was entertaining.
- Julie, Russel, and Em for taking us sailing, fishing, and giving me some great paragliding advise... we hope you can come visit us sometime.
- Steve and Margaret Schmidt - it was fun sharing the Shevanagan with you for a little over a week. Thanks for visiting.
- Tolchers - great to see Matt, Alex, and Rosa in your environment, and thanx for letting me play in your soccer game, although I lost the game by missing that PK and the 1 on 1.
- The Browns - Renton, Pauline, Suzanne for hosting us, and explaining the rules of rugby while Tony showed us how it's done.
- Jan and Warwick - for letting us stay at your beautiful home... I really enjoyed your trampoline.
- Last, and certainly not the least, Kevin and Laura... who made every adventure so much more enjoyable.
- My parents, who really took care of us, and I got to feast on some of my ma's cooking once again...
- Moses, who made traveling around Japan an enjoyable adventure. Thanks for eating everything my dad served you. What a guy.
- Tsuji - you're hilarious.
- Will Candler who we met up with in Tokyo for a day.
- Kyle, our Couchsurfing host in Mie.
- Ayano, our Couchsurfing host, who cooked up a memorable Japanese BBQ in Nagoya.
- John, our kiwi Couchsurfing host in Osaka.
- To Becca for hosting us for 2 weeks, taking us camping at a music festival, and showing us around Hiroshima.
- Lopez for making the most delicious Okonomiyaki I never knew even existed.
- Bom san - for being awesome.
- Victor - an A-bomb survivor - and also happens to be the most likable person you'll ever meet.
- CSing hosts: Josiah in Busan, Dave in Jeju, Paul in Seoul...thanx for your hospitality. Hope to see you back in the US sometime.
- To Hoefty & Elena, Amy & Lincoln, Kevin & Laura... for all getting married within 4 weeks of each other... no seriously, we feel very fortunate that we could attend your ceremonies.
- Stujo & Jackie & Amaru - y'all rock... Jackie - keep an eye on that guy.
- Cam & Jasper & all the A-town kids - thanks for the bed and taking us whitewater kayaking and rafting.
- Louis & his neighbor - for the canoe and having the facility to cook a 40 lb salmon.
- Stevee B - thanx for guiding us down the canyon.
- Achyut - our CSing host in Nepal, very helpful...thanks for cooking us dinner, arranging our trip, and picking us up at the airport.
- Sean... what can we say about our travel companion for 3 weeks. We enjoyed every one of the 100s of card and dice games...maybe you'll win one in the future.
- Toby, Hugo, Amanda on the Annapurna Circuit. Love the British humor...please come visit us.
- In Rae Leh - Caroline, Joern, and Akirapuppy - definitely enjoyed climbing with y'all.
- Fred (the dirt cricket) for making us laugh, and inspiring us with some great stories, and giving us some great ideas... like buying scooters in Laos.
- Jasper for visiting us for 5 weeks...Thanks for the memories.
- Funk for helping us be polite by drinking plenty of Lao Lao with the locals.
- Miriam for just being plain awesome.
- Mama Banana and husband in Muang Ngoi, Laos. Thanks for the good luck bracelets and maybe we'll come back someday with kids.
- Our couchsurfing host, Toom, in Bangkok who is the most generous person we met. Amazing guy, simply couldn't have done Bangkok without him... also to the other folks we met staying at his house in Nonthanaburi.
Happy New Year!