In mid 2010 I decided to take a year off work. My visa situation was a mess (what’s new?) and one of my options was to leave the US for at least a year, come back and re-apply for a new visa. The US economy wasn’t going anywhere and my logic at the time was that I would be better off leaving my job, wait a year, and get a better paying job which meant the sabbatical would pay for itself. It worked perfectly. I got $10,000.00 more per year which happens to be what I spend while backpacking abroad. In the words of Hannibal; “I love it when a plan comes together”.
The plan was to spend six months hiking the entire length of New Zealand (about 2000 miles) along the “Te Araroa” Trail, then three months in Australia and Tasmania after which I would maybe spend some time somewhere in South Asia.
There’s a lot to say about this trail. In many ways it was a “compressed and intense” version of life. So many encounters (both good and bad) and so many adventures…I have many stories. I’ll write them down some day. In the meantime, a short series of photos will have to do.