Wednesday, May 13, 2009

From the Beginning

Like so many things, this trip started in the Tune Inn, our neighborhood dive bar.

My husband and I were there at some point in late 2008 or early 2009 -- probably after the election and before the Inauguration, when work had slowed down a bit. We were discussing what big trip we might take to celebrate my 50th birthday in May. Well, mostly to celebrate my birthday. He had pretty much been working seven days a week since late 2007, so 2009 looked like the year to go somewhere.

But where? African safari? (Definitely someday.) Grand Tour of Europe? (There are so many places we've never seen!) Antarctica? (Nah... wrong time of year.)

Then there was that guy we met on Easter Island in 2004. He was celebrating his 50th birthday by visiting his 50th country. (Europeans have it easy -- they can knock off a couple dozen countries on long weekends.)

My husband suggested the big one: Why not all the way around the world this time?

I had plenty of logical reasons to shoot the idea down. It would be expensive. It would be exhausting. We couldn't take off the months and months you need to do it properly.

Yet week after week, usually in the same booth at the Tune Inn, we kept coming back to it, picking at the details.

Sure, it's expensive. But why save money on all those brown-bag lunches if we don't spend it on what we really want?

Of course it would be exhausting. But as we get older, it would only get more difficult.

And who says it has to take months and months?

We played with plane schedules. We poked at alternatives. In March, we finally decided to do it.

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