Tag Archives: round the world
February 18, 2012

PV Infographic 2: Camera Stats

Infographic #2, Camera Stats

Our second infographic took longer than I thought to compile and layout, but if you take a look, you’ll see why.  9 different devices (2 iPhones, if  you were wondering), created over 95,000 files that were backed up to 3 different hard drives.  Almost 60,000 photos taken on this trip and more than 5,000 video files!  If I’m going to share this stuff with you all over the coming year — and that’s the plan — then I guess I have my work cut out for me!

Make sure to click on the image above to see a larger version.

November 10, 2011

One Year Abroad

Last year, on November 10th, our flight from Miami to Quito kicked off our trip around the world.  Since then, we’ve traveled tens-of-thousands of miles across five continents, seen amazing sites, and met amazing people.  One year later, to the day, we’re still going strong.  We just arrived in a new city, Thailand’s Chiang Mai, and because of a fantastic coincidence, we happened to arrive during their Festival of Lights (Loi Krathong.)  We pretended the whole city was turning out to give us a huge anniversary party!

Originally, our year of travel was supposed to begin on July 1, 2010.  We’d budgeted $100/day for the entire year, setting aside a whopping $36,500 for our trip.  But we had setbacks and delays in the States which eventually delayed our trip by three months.  By the time November 10th rolled around, we had already been gone from home 140 days.  Assuming we’d stuck to our travel budget, that was $14,000 already spent.  We discussed it and made the tough decision to start again at zero – time-wise and money-wise – when we flew to Ecuador.

We did fairly well in South America (aside from spending too big a chunk on the Galapagos Islands), but Africa pitted our travel budget spreadsheet against us.  We regained some ground when we stayed with friends and family in Europe and Russia, saving on housing, but the transportation costs caught us again.  By September 12th, we had exhausted the $36,500 we’d set and realized that any remaining travel costs would be coming out of our savings.  We had fallen 58 day – almost two months – short of our goal.


October 13, 2011

Where in the World Are You?

You really need to click here for a closer look!

Early on, on this round-the-world trip of ours, Oksana and I had a serious conversation about just dumping all our electronics gear — our laptops, our cameras, all the batteries and chargers; everything but our clothes — and continuing on without it.  It would have probably halved the weight of our bags, but more importantly, it would have freed us from the self-imposed responsibility of sharing everything online.  Believe it or not, the stress associated with posting new stuff to this blog or on Facebook and Twitter can, at times, detract from our trip.  The travel blogger’s dilemma: Any time spent blogging is time not spent traveling…

One of those pieces of electronics that’s been weighing us down is a handheld GPS unit made by Garmin.  Every day — every single day! — we start it up just before we walk out the door and let it track our progress wherever we go.  We selected this particular unit, a Garmin eTrex Vista HCx, for its battery life.  Two AA batteries last around 25 hours.  At the end of every day, I save a GPS track.  When I have some spare time in front of the computer, I import them all into Google Earth, write up a brief summary of the day, and then combine everything in Google Maps for our website.

If you’ve been following the site, you know that we post a ton of photos, write something up from time to time, and post a video here and there.  If you’re really paying attention, you also know that we’ve been silently updating other parts of the site with much greater frequency.  (See: Our Recommended Tours page, our travel budget, and our “Where Are We?” page.)  Keeping up with this takes a huge amount of effort and is also a big reason why I haven’t written more blog entries or posted more videos on the site.

To stay motivated, I have to keep reassuring myself how cool it will be to have all this data at the end of our trip.  We’ll be able to dig into our budget and tell you exactly how much money we spent on, say, public restrooms in every country.  We’ll be able to recommend hotels for people traveling to the same destinations.  And we’ll be able to print out a wall-sized map of the world with our GPS track scrawled across it!

That’s what I wanted to show you today.  Google Maps is notoriously finicky about showing maps with huge tracks across them.  To reduce loading time, it usually breaks your map up into multiple pages, but every once in awhile, I’ve noticed that Google Maps displays my map in its entirety.  This time, when I saw all the tracks laid out before me, I made sure to zoom in, screencap everything, and stitch a big map back together in Photoshop.  There are still some problems with it (notice some of the gaps in the tracks — they’re actually there when you zoom in closer, but don’t display at this particular zoom level), but it’s a great representation of just how far we’ve gone in a 16 months or so.

Today, this map is pretty much blowing my mind.  We’ve traveled across the whole freakin’ planet!