How to Plan a World Trip – Step 0: Decide to Do It

How does one even start with planning a world trip?  There are so many things to consider.  Where to go?  How will we pay for it?  What happens with our kitties?

We’ve all heard it: “wow, world travel?  I’d love to do that some day…”  I’m not much of a fan of “some day,” as it’s so noncommittal.  One can dream without ever taking the terrifying risk of actually doing it.  And then when life simply gets in the way, we can’t be blamed for not seeing those dreams come to fruition.

[bctt tweet=’Make “some day” today!’]

But what I’ve found: the dream is that much more exciting when you actually set it in motion.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2016

So how did we get here?

Circa March 2016, I had an idea for an excellent April Fools Day joke: claim we were headed to Japan for a year, taking part in the JET (Japan Exchange and Teaching) program.  It was plausible enough, especially since I’ve legitimately considered it before.  Aaron and I had an absolute blast in Japan, and I would love an excuse to return for an extended visit.  However, I don’t really have the patience for teaching, and I’ve heard nothing but horror stories about the stringent work environment of Japan.  Needless to say, probably not for me.

However, plenty believed us, and that April 1st was a hoot.

Afterwards, Aaron and I were relaxing on our deck with a couple glasses of wine (a dangerous catalyst when ideas are involved), discussing how incredible a year abroad would be.  And the thought occurred to us: what’s stopping us?  A bottom-of-a-wine-bottle later, we had a plan.  We were committed.  We were going to make this happen.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2016

Then I had another idea: don’t tell anyone.  Why?  Because this would make the ultimate April Fools Day joke.  What’s better than fibbing about going abroad for a year?  Making the same claim a year later and actually meaning it.

So as hard as it was, we kept our lips sealed.  For almost a year.

And the following April 1st?  It was everything I had hoped.

April 1 at 8:35am
So Aaron and I have some news we are very excited to share. We are saving our pennies and researching the heck out of the internet. Come ~2019, we’re going to sell most of our belongings, find a loving friend or family member to take care of our kitties, and go explore the globe for a year! We’re already eyeing places like Thailand, New Zealand, Chile, and Scotland. Where else should we go??

Half of our friends dismissed it immediately as a joke.  Some took it for truth and were excited for us.  Some were already living April 2nd halfway around the globe when they saw the announcement and never considered it could be false.  One congratulated us before realizing it was the 1st and following up with a, “darn it! you got me.”

It was so much fun.

But the next day was even better!  I got to make another announcement saying “April Fools!  …but not the way you might think…”  Those who thought it was a joke were all the more shocked, and those who were disappointed at realizing the date were thrilled we were actually doing this.

April 2 at 2:51pm
Ok, ok, folks.. Those of you who saw our world travel post yesterday are waiting for the punchline.. So here it is: April fools!
..just not the way you might think.

Some of you saw through the joke, but most of you didn’t, and it was all a lot of fun!

So guess what? We weren’t lying. And we weren’t joking. We’re actually going.
This is also an open invitation for any who would like to join us at any point abroad. We’ll have to make a point to meet friends somewhere in Australia, and we’ll certainly have to return to Japan, if only briefly.

Commence excitement!!


It was beautiful.

You might think that’s a lot of effort gone into a mere prank, but it was worth every agonizing minute of holding our tongues.

And while it might have started as a joke, we really are embarking in a trip of a lifetime.  We’re making this happen.  “Some day” is here.

And we invite you to join us.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2015

How to Travel the World

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