About two and a half years ago, I had the slightly mad idea of us giving up work, school and house to embark on a round the world trip as a family. Our estimated departure date, when our youngest child would be four years old, seemed a very long way off. With children then aged 5, 3 and 1, we were still in the thick of broken nights, bottom wiping, food throwing, lunchtime naps and buggies and it all seemed a bit of a pipe dream that I couldn’t truly imagine pulling off.
But all the while, the thought has been in my head, like a bar of chocolate you know is sitting uneaten in the cupboard. I’ve read travel blogs while CBeebies entertained the children, I’ve planned packing lists while pushing toddlers on swings, the stack of guide books next to my bed is reaching skyscraper proportions and we’ve talked and talked and talked about where to go, what to do, whether we are brave enough to step on the plane.
More recently, we’ve told family and friends of our plans and I started this blog. Telling people and writing things down has made it all seem more real, more possible, but sometimes a little like a runaway train that we couldn’t stop, even if we wanted to.
As each month has passed, we’ve reached milestones that are taking us ever closer to our departure. The baby of the family is now walking, talking and weeing in the loo (mostly). The middle child is out of nappies at nightime and starting to swim. The eldest child is reading, telling the time and mastering times tables (very useful for currency conversions). We’ve survived our first family camping trip, squeezed into a single hotel room for a week, learnt how to catch crabs. I think we are as ready as we’ll ever be.
The time has now come to book tickets, to put our money where our mouth is. We’ve spent the last week discussing our itinerary, ‘if we arrive in Hawaii on the 8th and stay for 4 weeks, that means we’ll fly to New Zealand on the 6th’ conversations have peppered the quiet time between Christmas and New Year. On Wednesday, I’m going to take my scrap of paper with all our dates to Trailfinders, possibly the best travel agent in the world, and see what they come up with.
I’ll let you know.
This post was inspired by Mara at ‘The Mother of All Trips‘ Mondays are for dreaming slot.