Travel Blogger's Odyssey from Asia to Europe

in introduceyourself •  6 months ago

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Finally, I am writing my introduceyourself post after being on Steemit for a while. I thought, it's really time to give a shout out, argh!

Here I am, a small time YouTube vlogger who recently moved to Steemit blogging due to more fan interaction and the ease of content creation.

It has been more than one year and a month since I quit my job to go on an unlimited journey around the world to find myself, know more about the world and do the most important things in life that I always wanted to do and never saw the chance. I am now in Laos, my 20th country that I have visited so far, cycling and backpacking from HK to France together with my girlfriend whom I met while I was cycling and camping throughout Japan.

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I have to admit that I am very lucky to be able to sustain such a long time of travel. I went bankrupt once in Hong Kong after trying my hands on crypto but magically recovered by Airbnbing out my flat. So, here I am now, still travelling with some highlights in Thailand and Laos such as meeting monks.

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Cycling through Chiang Mai.

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Enjoying a slow boat on the beautiful Mekong river.

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Meditating in retreats, meeting old friends, finding odd ways to find happiness.

So, you might ask, have I found my goal or what I was looking for? The truth is that somehow I lost everything I thought was important before. Family, friends, career, academia, ambitions, money etc. But that was exactly what I was after: To try to find out what happens if you cut out everything and see what is left.

I was unhappy with my life before. I knew it must change but I didn't know what. So, my strategy was to radically change every single aspect of my life and see if that which remains is happiness.

I moved from Austria to China, travelled three months in Northern China, then three months of volunteering in Japan, one month of cycling in Japan, a few weeks in South Korea, then Hong Kong for a few months because I had to financially recover, and now cycling from HK to Macao through China and ending up backpacking in South East Asia.

Along the way, I killed my career, my CV has a complete blank of two years, my experience being next to nothing in a specialised branch of any industry. I have no friends who I can meet, only occasional travel buddies. I have no stable income. Anything I own is within my backpack and on my bike.

The result: absolute freedom and ultimate bliss.

Why?

I found my love during my cycle tour and she is travelling with me now. I have total freedom cause I don't need to obey my parents nor any society. I pay no tax cause I am always a traveller. I can stay wherever I want for as long as I like or if I don't like a place I can leave the next day. There aren't any ties that can bind me. The only signifiant restriction is my girlfriend but I decided for it myself. It's not forced upon me.

Before, I was classified as the unattractive Chinese in Austria, cause most of the girls there didn't like Asians in that particular way. But after I travelled, I got my six pack and became the lady killer, especially in Japan. A YouTuber from the US even told me to start a channel teaching travellers how to pick up girls. I gave it a thought but soon I got my girlfriend which meant death to the career as a pick up artist.

Long term travel changes your life, it changes your perception of what the world is like because if you would like to ask me what is the essence of what I learned from my travel so far condensed into one sentence:

Each country is an entire universe, crossing one border is like waking up from a dream, what an example of impermanence, nothing lasts and everything is changing leaving no one-sided truth the truth.


The Entire Travel Series

Read even more from the Journey to the West series. Start from the top.

The Begin
Donated Rear Panniers
Last Shopping
Buying Supplies
The Map
First Day of Ride
If it Rains, it's Not Laziness
Long Ride in Shenzhen
The First Mistake and How We Fixed It
Don't Give Up the Bike Tour
Last Days in China
Biking Thailand Starts in Chiang Mai
Updated Travel Mode in Chiang Rai

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As you know @angelro featured you in this week's #PayItForward contest @pifc.

Such an amazing step to take and for it to work out the way it has. I sounds like you have found what you're looking for. You look so happy in your pictures, ultimately, isn't that what really matters?

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Yes I just saw that. Thanks for pointing it out. I am curious to that contest. What is it about?

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Well, like so many of us we read what other people write. Some good, some not so good. The whole purpose is to find people that are under 50 Rep, that write well and share them with others in the group. To get them to be seen. From there the idea is to keep paying it forward. That the features would then do posts about more unrecognized people and that this would keep the initiative growing, So if you decide to 'join' us next week, you would be eligible for prizes. The most prominent prize that is given out is SBI which is a guaranteed upvote on everything you post. The more SBI you collect the more of an upvote you get.

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I see so if I join you I will curate on Steemit and submit a nomination of a blog post?

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exactly :) look @thedarkhorse's posts he's still posting from there until @pifc get situation. The new contest starts today or tomorrow and will run through Sat.

Welcome to Steem, @bikeitjohn!

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Really cool app. I will try it out.

Bro welcome on steemit If you more learn about steemit Just Contact me on Discord : farhannaqvi7#1327

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Ok I tried to find you on discord but I am a total noob. Can you find me please? bikeitjohn#2969

Thanks for your help. I have loads of questions on Steemit. Even after reading the white paper they seem to have changed a lot.

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Ok my friend i send you request there

Good afternoon! I most recently on Steemit, like you. I decided that together we can achieve much and develop faster. Let's increase the power of Steemit together. I followed you hope and you follow me. Glad to new acquaintances!

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Thank you for following me and your upvote. I appreciate your support. Let me have a look at your profile now. Are you a blogger for travel related stuff?

That's quite the adventure you have going, and you're not the only one on Steemit who appears to be doing something similar. Maybe you'll bump into them on the way around. :)

Traveling and seeing new places and meeting new people are things that a lot of us aspire to do, but few of us manage to do it before life settles us into one particular place. Add raising a family to the equation and living a life on the go becomes that much more harder to do.

Then, as you mention, there can be pros and cons, but that happens to us regardless of what life is chosen, so we will live with the consequences and hope we've found happiness through them.

At any rate, it seems like you're finding your way as you go, not only out there, but here, on Steemit. So, since you finally took the time to introduce yourself, welcome to Steemit, and I hope you find what you're seeking. :)

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Thank you very much. Do you have a family now? I saw a movie where there was a crazy couple who travels all the time on a van together with their three kids. The woman even have birth to a boy in the sea.

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Yes I do. I'm married, with two sons that are also married, one with a child. The son with wife and child are currently living with us.

I've read of a family with at least five children who have been traveling around the world on their boat. They've been doing it for several years. It's given them all the chance to go to places they would probably never go otherwise, and they believe that the education their children are getting is better than what they would get going to a public school.

Can't remember if this is still ongoing or if the kids are all grown—I probably read about them a year ago, so I'm fuzzy on the timeframes.

My wife wouldn't be so keen on biking around and living out of a tent at her age. Right now, it's about putting away enough for retirement so we can do things like visit grandkids or go to Europe or some other place she wants to go.

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In South East Asia the rent is so cheap that we actually sent back our camping gear. I am glad to hear that you have a thriving family.

Yes, I somewhat agree that you can get a decent education when you travel instead of going to primary school. I would still let my children take the state examinations and enter university though. But if the parents speak multiple languages and teach each day a few things from textbooks, the progression of education can be very fast because the kids don't need to learn abridged versions but the original ones first hand. At least their geography skills will be top so will their history knowledge.

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Yeah, the geography knowledge for the areas they would travel in you would think would be off the charts, and since American students at least don't do very well even with the states, that would be a major step up.

I guess it would depend on what you consider education. And I'm not sure but I think they would need to work sometimes in order to replenish supplies and build cash reserves, so there's also the practical real world experience of working hard to support yourself.

I don't know. I don't think it's for everyone, especially seven people being cooped up on a boat for extended periods of time, but I could see where it would be very fun and educational at least for a while. It would be hard to have ongoing experiences that would duplicate it, that's for sure.

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Soon I have to bend my knees to reality too and start earning money. I just have no idea what I should do as I sort of cut my career. Perhaps travel agency work may suit me.

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It certainly could, particularly for all the places you've visited firsthand. And it would be a way to keep in touch with travel regularly, too, which means you could still actually go do it. A tour guide of some kind would be another. You could be a part of a travel agency that actually creates tours and then you could go on the tour and act as guide. :)

One of the things I would like to do—not sure if it's going to happen now—is have a bed and breakfast or smaller hotel down in the Quintana Roo/Yucatan area of Mexico and then take people on tours of the Mayan ruins out that way. My wife has never been keen on the idea, though, so I've never attempted it, but it's still something that sits at the back of mind as something I'd love to do if I ever got the chance. :)

Good job. Lucky man, lovely GF you have. I'm from Oregon. I was in Vietnam. I love to bike. Love basketball. I'm Oatmeal Joey. Great to meet you.

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Good to meet you too! How was vietnam? Our next destination is there. We get there in three days or so.

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I had many adventures in Vietnam.

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Where did you go and where do you recommend me to go? I am about to get to Vietnam around Da Nang in a week or so.

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I was in Hanoi and Saigon.

whooaaaa.. what a story @bikeitjohn! hope that you'll always this lively and happy with whatever you do and wherever you go, both of you for sure.

found your post from @angelro in the Pay It Forward Contest's this week. if he didn't tell you, well here is the link to his post, If you are in vietnam now, maybe you can meet other backpacker but she's a motobike rider, who loves Pho so much and still in Ha long, am I right @traveleranna?

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Hey thank you for your reply. I just saw my article being mentioned in the contest. Love it. Yes I shall reach out to her as I am soon going to Vietnam. Perhaps in a week.

Great travel blog post! Love the photos. I found you through the #payitforward contest. You were featured by @angelro. Congratulations.

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Thanks. I just saw the feature and was very surprised. That's a great welcome gift and good sign. Will do more blogging here.