We have met a lot of people during our year of travelling and had lots of conversations. There are some questions that seem to crop up over and over. Here are the 10 questions we are asked most frequently…
1 How can you afford to travel for a whole year?
People often assume that we must be loaded to take on a round the world trip. In truth we have spent less this year than we would have done at home. We were able to remortgage our house and rent it out to fund our adventure. We try to stick to a backpacker type budget and we have spent most of our time in countries with low living costs. We are heading home with a hefty credit card bill.
2 Isn’t it hard to travel with children?
I have said before that life on the road with kids is still life with kids. They get hungry, tired and they fight. But the actual travel part I think is easier with children than without. People go out of their way to help, they make room on the bus, let you jump queues and give you food. The children are great at breaking the ice and we have visited some really cool places that we wouldn’t have done without them in tow.
3 What about school?
This has been asked with every different tone of voice you could imagine. From mild curiosity to outright shock. Our boys are still young, nearly 4 and 5 and a half, there is plenty of time for school. They have learned far more this year than they possibly could in a classroom.
4 Don’t you get on each others nerves being together all the time?
Yes. Sometimes. We are human after all. But we have developed coping strategies like going for a walk, taking turns with the kids or just not talking to each other.
5 Has you sex life suffered?
Lots of people wonder about this but as my Mum is reading I’ll just say that as a co-sleeping family this is a familiar question. When you’re all sharing one bed that is the place for sleep and you find other places to have a bit of a kiss and cuddle. This is also true for travelling.
6 What has your favourite country been?
Up until a month ago my answer was India. We loved the vibrancy and chaos. How every day felt like an adventure. The people, the food and how each state was so different from the last. Now I would say New Zealand. You couldn’t get anywhere less like India.
7 Wow, you took your kids to India! Didn’t you get sick?
Everyone wants to hear about the shits. There were some but only for the odd half a day and never accompanied by anything more sinister. One of us wrecked a pair of trousers with a fart that wasn’t a fart but on the whole we’ve been pretty healthy. In fact the most ill we’ve been this year is in the last week where 3 out of 4 of us have ended up with infections from a hot spring.
8 Have there been times you thought you made a big mistake?
Of course! Nearly going up in smoke on a night bus in Vietnam led me to question what the hell we were doing. We had put ourselves in danger and I had many sleepless nights dwelling on the ‘what ifs?’
9 You must have a lot of luggage?
Nah. We’ve got 30kg all together. And that felt like way too much around South East Asia when we didn’t need our warm jackets and waterproofs!
10 Do the children enjoy travelling?
The children enjoy doing the things that children enjoy doing. They love beaches and swimming pools. They love making new friends, playing lego and hanging out in playgrounds. They love seeing wildlife and visiting museums. They are not so keen on temples.