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5 Things We Will Miss While We Are Away

I cannot believe we are actually doing this!!!

We are soooo close to getting on a plane, and initiating this “master plan” which we have been dreaming about since last February.

This weekend we attended three good-bye parties, and we were very honoured that so many people came out to say adios! (thank you to EVERYONE who showed up!) That was just another reminder to us as to how lucky we both are to be surrounded by so many incredible people…. we have it pretty good here at home.

We have realized that as much as there is an endless number of things we are looking forward to (my guess is that is the topic of another post, which Shawna will probably write as soon as she gets up), there are a ton of things which we will be thinking of and wishing we had more access to, while we are away.

Here, are five of them:

5. Coffee and Chocolate

Let’s make something clear. I love coffee. No, let’s make that we. We love coffee! We love loving coffee! My hot, dark, bitter friend….the perfect morning nectar….coffee = life….you get the picture…

So my assumption is that coffee, fine brewed coffee, would be everywhere around the world. I would have thought we would have had incredible coffees in the hills of Kenya or the island of Sumatra, but from other travellers blogs as well as Shawna’s own African experience, we have nothing but Nescafe instant coffee to look forward to in many of these locations.

Ditto for chocolate…okay this is more Shawna than me…I can appreciate good chocolate, but Shawna makes Willy Wonka look like a diabetic.

Yet again, based on Shawna’s past experience in Africa, where we will be spending (we hope) a substantial amount of time, the chocolate there was…”grainy”? Yuk!

We recognize that there will be pockets of awesome coffee and chocolate around the world, and I hope we are proven wrong, but I think our standards as a whole for these two fixes will have to be lowered quite aggressively. What do you think? Are we wrong?

4. The Gym

Alright, one of us will miss this more than the other, and let’s just say it’s not the one with a beer belly.

Over the past two and a half years, Shawna has taught at Gold’s Gym in Regina, as a Ride Instructor (i.e. spin class) anywhere between 2-5 times per week. She is an incredible instructor, and her riders love her. This place has been more than a gym, it has been her community. She is so incredibly inspired after a class – she is glowing.

As for me, well, yeah sure, I’ll miss it. The gym is a great place to go when you need to be motivated, when you are having a terrible day, or you just need to ‘feel strong’.

However, despite the fact that we will not have four walls, a weight room, and exercise bikes to work out with for most of our trip, we are not going to let this trip compromise our fitness (i.e. we won’t come back fat). Shawna has been taking personal training for the past couple months, and has learned a ton of exercises which we will be able to do using our own body weight, and perhaps a resistance band. Our hope is that we can alternate being the ‘motivator’ each day we are working out, and make sure that we keep each other accountable.

3. A Paycheque

Both Shawna and I have just left our professional sales careers to embark on this journey.

And as a result, May 27th was the last day our bank accounts would grow….from this point forward our ability to generate income (at least in the traditional way) is done. It makes me nervous just typing this….Shawna previously wrote that “it’s not about the money”, and it’s not, but we aren’t trying to kid ourselves…..we enjoy earning an income.

Alas, we are now on a budget. With 8 days left we do still have a few minor purchases to make for our trip, but we are doing what we can to stop most day-to-day spending. We are subsisting on whatever is in the pantry – yesterday I ate a chickpea and marmalade sandwich on rice crackers for lunch – and keeping our grocery bill to a minimum.

While we are on the road, we will be attempting to live, as a couple, off $100/day CDN. We know that in places like England, this may be a challenge. However, we should make up for this in cheaper countries like India and Thailand…at least that is our plan. Any on the road saving tips are more than welcomed!

2. Our Bed

After a long drawn out day of bribing your way through the Kazakstanian border, saving orangutans in Indonesia, riding hippos in Tanzania, and kayaking through the Panama Canal wouldn’t you just kill for your own pillow and your own bed?

Yeah…us too!

1. Friends and Family

This should come as a surprise to no one. Shawna and I are extremely close with our families, love them very much, and will miss them incredibly.

Wasn’t that The Waltons TV show where they ended every episode with one of those cheesy family good-night routines? (Google has just confirmed that this is correct…thanks Google). Anyways, that’s us. Weird, huh?

Our siblings are our best friends and our parents are where we go when we need help or to ask advice. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and of course our neice and three nephews…you too, are all very important to us. The support you have given us while we have been planning this trip is almost uncalled for (but thank you anyways!)

And then of course there are our friends….Shawna going for a run with one of the girls, me heading to Bushwakkers for a pint with one of the guys, or both of us headed out to Crave for a night out with a whole crew, you make us laugh, you provide us with awesome insight and conversation, and, like our families, you have supported us so much on while we have been planning this crazy trip that it is almost embarrassing. Thank you. We will miss you.

An honourable mention goes out to Alex Trebek and Jeopardy. The two of us watch this show with more regularity than a bran muffin. We’ll miss you Alex. Stay cool!

Like I said above there are an infinite number of experiences, people, places, and things which Shawna and I are looking forward to….this is hardly meant to be a ‘woe is me’ post. In fact, it is meant to be more of a “I cannot believe you two are leaving strong coffee, melt in your mouth chocolate, a great paycheque, a pretty sweet gym, a firm mattress with two pillows folded over, 184 + 7 friends (Shawna and Skott respectively), Alex Trebek, and loving families to go travel” kind of post.

But yes, we are….but only because we know they will all be there when we come back!

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16 Responses to “5 Things We Will Miss While We Are Away”

  1. Jaime June 7, 2011 at 2:11 pm #

    Lost the list but trust me you will be having so much fun you wont miss a thing. On the positive side you will be able to find Coffee & Chocolate everywhere you go. As for the GYM you will be doing so many hikes and so much walking it will be your work out. About the paycheck… ahhh that is something I miss. I just watch my account go down down and down…lol!!! Your bed you will only miss when you are stuck with a crappy as bed…lol and that will happen often. Last but not least yes… friends and family. Sometimes I dont think about them and then days where I can not stop thinking about them. The good thing is your going to have the time of your life!!!

    P.S. Thanks for posting a pic of Canadian money. Just yesterday I was wondering what it looked like.
    Jaime recently posted..Music Monday – Papa Americano

    • Skott June 7, 2011 at 10:18 pm #

      You make this sound pretty easy Jaime – thanks for the words of encouragement…. we are very much ready to get on that plane and get the party started!!

  2. Jodi June 7, 2011 at 8:04 pm #

    …..and of course your nephews:)

    • Skott June 7, 2011 at 10:17 pm #

      oh oh – yes of course Mayan, Rowan, Taya, and Kade….! We definitely won’t forget about them!

  3. Jodi June 7, 2011 at 8:08 pm #

    I’m going to start bring you guys some food. It will be like your single days:)

    • Skott June 7, 2011 at 10:16 pm #

      My single unemployed days…sweet!

  4. Megan June 8, 2011 at 9:32 am #

    I agree with Jamie – you’ll be having too much fun to miss things for too long :) Though I had a really hard time getting decent chocolate in China (the choice was Snickers bars or Snickers bars) and after a couple of days that started to drive me crazy…maybe stock up before you hit Africa! ;)
    Megan recently posted..Taking a breather in Rishikesh

    • Skott and Shawna June 8, 2011 at 8:22 pm #

      We will have to eat Switzerland out of chocolate on our way down to Spain… maybe we should carry a cooler with us??

  5. Mike Lenzen | Traveled Earth June 9, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

    I’m feeling the marmalade sandwiches. Not exactly, in my case it’s KD and Perogies.

    Thanks for inviting us out to your going away party, too bad we had to leave early, but those 6AM flights are a bugger.
    Mike Lenzen | Traveled Earth recently posted..12 Things Vegas Taught Me About Taking Public Transit

  6. Worldly Couple June 17, 2011 at 4:00 pm #

    Man leaving the bed is a bitch! Also a big thing to miss: your own shower that isnt infested with the hair and grime of tonnes of other people hahahaha!!

    As for coffee – you will find it easier than you may think, just might have to pay for it! As crazy (and kinda sad) as it is there will be starbucks within reach at many of your destinations

    Enjoy it, it goes by fast and what you miss will easily be replaced by the crazy life experience you will gain.

    Safe Travels!

    • Skott and Shawna June 17, 2011 at 8:20 pm #

      Hey J&J thanks for stopping in!!!
      You are absolutely right, these are very small sacrifices to make, in order to have this crazy experience…I am pretty sure it won’t take us long to forget about most of these things…except family and friends (and Alex) of course!

      I suspect flush toilets will also be something we will be longing for by the time we return home…oh the compromises we make, eh?!

  7. crazy sexy fun traveler June 30, 2011 at 9:26 am #

    On my trips I miss all the time something, but the fun and the new experience is worth it! Good luck, guys!

    • Skott June 30, 2011 at 5:38 pm #

      You are absolutely right! Giving up somethings isn’t so bad at all, if you get new experiences in exchange….pretty cool deal actually!


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