this trip is over, the new trip starts

My worldtrip 2011/ 2012 is over. I´ve been travelling for almost a year now. My travels brought me to 11 countries on 4 continents and I have been on 29 flights excluding transit stops. This blog-post is showing some facts about my year.

I have been able to visit following countries:
– Canada (1 week in British Columbia)
– USA (2,5 months all over the mainland and the hawaiian islands)
– Vietnam (4 weeks from Ha Noi to Saigon)
– Cambodia (1 week in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap – Angkor Wat)
– Indonesia (about 3 weeks in Jakarta, meditation and Bali)
– Brunei (2 days)
– Malaysia (Borneo for 3 weeks)
– Thailand (6 weeks)
– Hong Kong (10 days in China)
– Sweden (2 months)
– Argentina (almost 2 months all over Argentina)

The probably most asked question is: “Which country did you like the best?”
It is impossible for me to answer this question in one sentence. There is not THE country I loved the most. For me most important is what i experienced in the countries or places I have visited and what people I´ve met there. A place can be my number one just because I had a deep conversation or an amazing party there. This does not mean you will like the place if you go there. 😉 My number one places are Hawaii, Vietnam and Argentina (in the order I visited them). There is amazing people living on Hawaii having the right approach to life. The vibe on Hawaii is perfect! Vietnam because the country is so wild. Nothing is easy for westeners – everything is new. Every day is an adventure! And Argentina because it is so versatile. It is the biggest country I have visited so far and I was amazed by the distances and the beauty of this country.

The books I´ve read on my trip made me show emotions in the weirdest places. They made me laugh on busses, airplanes and trains, they made me cry when lying on the beach or having lunch, they fed my brain with information about foreign countries and cultures and sometimes simply provided entertainment. I wish I have had more time for reading… books are the perfect travel buddies! They may change the mood you are in and let the places you visit be associated with the stories you´ve read there. These are the books that accompanied me on my way:

  • “The girl in the picture” by Denise Chong, about the Vietnam war. This book gave me an idea about the agent orange attacks and general information about the war. I bought it in Saigon – it was one of the cheap copies of original books they sell cheap in Asia.
  • “Andromeda Strain” by Michael Crichton, given to me by a travel mate from Holland whom i talked to for 3 days without exchanging any contact details. He was a nurse and looked up the right medicine for me when I was very sick. Besides that he gave me travel tips that helped me all over south east asia! I am thinking a lot of you my friend.
  • “147 hours – between a rock and a hard place” by Aron Ralston, I exchanged one of my books in the free and amazing book exchange places in Asia to this one… I was amazed by how much Aron loves sports. Everyone should follow his or her passion!
  • “The beach” by Alex Garland. I read this boook in the perfect place – on the film location in Krabi Thailand! I read the book after seeing the movie and can just say: the book is so much better!
  • “Eat, pray, love” by Elizabeth Gilbert. It seemed to be the natural reaction to the story of my world trip: “Oh, you are like the eat-pray-love girl!” I had never read the book before my trip nor did the trip get into my head because of this book. But since I read it I can see some parallels in miss Gilbert´s and my life…
  • “Down Under” by Bill Bryson. My friend recommended Bill Bryson to me and I was wondering if i am ready for some english language wit. Before my trip i was not able to read a whole book in english. It was too exhausting for me and it took for ever. Now I can read english books as fluently as German books. I love it!
  • “Dear John” by Nicholas Sparks. This book made one of the 12 hours bus rides in Argentina a little sweeter. It is an easy to read book and the threehundredsomething pages flew by in only a couple of hours.

The following posts will be about my way. Not about my way back into my old life – but about the way into my new life.
Travels are over for now but the experience just started!