Chapter 9 – Pause for Reflection



Chapter 9 – pause for reflection


We are sitting on a white veranda porch sipping a glass of Pinot Noir overlooking the Marlborough Sound (South NZ).  We started reflecting on what we have seen, done, learned, and thought about the most, over the past several months.


Here are some of things that bubbled to the top:


  • We are spending at a faster rate than expected and seriously considering the potential social media crowd source options…something like…”middle-aged couple trying to find themselves travelling around the world are quickly running out of money and are still lost….please support their personal self-exploration…denominations of $50, $100, $500, or $1,000 welcomed and appreciated”!!…Barring this type of request going viral, we will be back home in Canada in June as the CRA and Bank will no doubt be missing us!  Hee hee


  • After travelling for several months, we now think of ourselves as “travelers” instead of “tourists”


  • The most common conversations with people we have met around the world have been about Trump and BreExit.   With the exception of one U.S. couple, everyone is shocked and concerned about this new President (American tourists were the most worried and embarrassed).  BreExit is regarded, by most, as a HUGE mistake (regardless of age), other than a few elderly English couples, who believe it is the right decision “back to the “good ole days”.


  • In conversations about Canada, Justin Trudeau was always talked about very positively.  (Not only his looks but his views and beliefs!)


  • Conversations with people under the age of 30 (and there were lots) was very much about globalization – they don’t want to be held down by the past (their parents’ world) – and want to move forward into a much more open and transparent world – they are our future and it looks great


  • Our food journey has been amazing and wonderful — we have eaten so many different types of food we didn’t even know existed


  • We have seen and experienced so many beautiful places that Fran’s #1 over used word is “crazy” and Steve’s is “amazing”!


  • The world is huge and there is so much to see and do


  • We both thought we were fairly open-minded, however, as we travel from country to country and have conversations with so many people, our perspectives and understandings are expanding and we find we are more tolerant


  • We are learning more than we can keep in our heads (could have something to do with the beer and wine)


  • Although people are different in each country we visit – they fundamental care about each other, they want to live in a peaceful world, and want to be happy


  • Travelling life savers; compression packing bags, replacing clothes every couple of months, a travel agent that is on the ball (thanks Anne and Kyle), patience and staying positive


  • Every airport in every country has a different security clearance and customs entrance process


  • For the first time in our relationship we are talking about things other than work and we are falling in love all over again


  • What we are doing is not “escapism” but “our reality”


  • Murphy’s Global Law “regardless of what country you are in — a slow car in front of you approaching a passing lane will always speed up making it difficult if not impossible for you to pass”


  • We know we will remember the people we met more than the sites we have seen and things we have done.  Every day without exception has been filled with smiles and laughter.


Here are a couple of stats on our travels to date (pre-New Zealand)


Km walked: 760

Stairs climbed: 1,160

Countries visited: 13

Cities/towns/villages visited: 40

Hotels/B&B’s stayed in: 32

Beer and wine tasted:  too many to count

Lbs put on and taken off:  constant – with more staying on that being shed:-(





Making it So!


Fran and Steve

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  • Lori

    Fantastic! Love it! You both are such wonderful people, you deserve this! 🙂 See you this summer!

    March 30, 2017 at 3:55 pm
  • Gwen

    I have to admit I began tearing up when you talked about the similarities of the people rather than the differences. You both having taken this gift of travel and made it an existential experience — I’m so envious. Keep on bringing the Canadian sunshine to the people you meet — they too, are the lucky ones to have met you! Luv Gwen

    March 30, 2017 at 4:20 pm
  • Sandy K

    “For the first time in our relationship we are talking about things other than work and we are falling in love all over again” – You can stop looking and come home – you have found yourselves, and each other……

    March 30, 2017 at 7:04 pm
  • Donna Shields

    My heart is in my throat as I read your message and take in the wonderful pictures of smiling people and beautiful places. You are so right – 99% of people on this planet are loving and kind, and I am so happy that you have met so many of them! What an incredible time you have had, and to hear that you stopped talking about work and have discovered each other all over again is beyond fantastic. A truly successful journey on so many levels. You are so fortunate to have each other, and to be able to share this journey together. What fun you have had too!! Memories to share and treasure for all of your days. You inspire me. Safe travels as you make your way back to Canada.

    Peace and much love,

    March 31, 2017 at 1:28 am
  • Toby and Sian Shannon

    Great to meet you both fleetingly over a really enjoyable and interesting dinner at Takatu Lodge in NZ-a lovely evening and one of the highlights of our own fabulous (but shorter!) trip. Well done to you both on your adventure and for actually doing what most people just talk about -it sounds like your trip has been a huge success on a number of different levels-I hope you enjoy the rest of it as much as we enjoyed ours and you have yours so far! With best wishes to you both , Toby and Sian.

    March 31, 2017 at 11:37 am
  • Phyllis Clark

    Wow!!! I would say that you have updated your imagination from all the travel…and it was very active before. Hope to hear about it in person soon.

    March 31, 2017 at 5:20 pm
  • You two are amazing! I love reading about your travels, your thoughts and your LOVE! Thanks for sharing with us:) Have fun

    March 31, 2017 at 9:31 pm
  • We miss you : come back safe. Can’t wait to hear more.

    April 3, 2017 at 8:51 pm
  • Larry Ohlhauser

    You guys look great. Hope to see you when you are home.

    April 3, 2017 at 9:35 pm
  • Bernd Manz

    Wonderful adventure! thanks for your reflections.
    I particularly like:
    “•For the first time in our relationship we are talking about things other than work and we are falling in love all over again.” Congratulations. Just wondering – how many countries / bottles of wine did it take to reach this state 🙂 ?
    Hoping to hear more of your stories.

    April 4, 2017 at 3:01 pm
  • Pam wood

    What a wonderful trip you guys have had I can’t wait to hear more when your back. Take care we miss you and love you

    April 7, 2017 at 4:58 am

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