The Beginnings of a Plan

Tim started the first of his final two semesters for his Master's degree yesterday. He'll finish up in May. I will start the last of my coursework semesters for my PhD next Thursday when I wing down to Florida for the weekend. The plan is to finish with my dissertation in two semesters thereafter, making my proposed completion date February of '09 (though I would walk in May '09 - the graduations are offset slightly from the semester schedule I'm on.) Both of us agree that we're in need of a carrot - some kind of reward waiting sweetly at the end of the journey. And since all of our resources (physical, mental, and to a large degree monetary) are currently being funneled into school, a vacation sounded like just the right thing.

When we first kicked around the idea, we tentatively decided on a two week jaunt in Scotland. We're trying desperately to break ourselves of constantly and only travelling to Ireland - because there are other places we want to see, no matter how much we love the Emerald Isle.

Near the end of this past semester, at the height of my stress and frustration, I decided that Scotland, as wonderful and delightful as it might be, really wasn't going to be enough of a carrot to get me through this. And besides, we could go to Scotland any old time - why not do something a little more adventurous. So the idea of New Zealand was launched.

Now, I happen to know that Tim is not what anyone would call a good traveller. I'm not sure if he's inherited his father's restless leg syndrome (a distinct possibility) or if it's simply that his metabolism is so high that he gets jittery without moving (also a possibility) but he really has a tough time sitting still in one place for more than about 4 hours. This has made our trips to Ireland nearly torturous for him, even with direct flights. So the thought occurred to me that we should break up the roughly 20 hours from our house to New Zealand by stopping first in LA (which we'd have to do anyway) and then in Hawaii. Because we've both always wanted to go to Hawaii anyway, and this is as good an excuse as any.

So I posited this plan to Tim, mentioning the day or so in LA and the two or so days in HI and then off to NZ and we commenced day dreaming. It seemed a good plan.

Until I got another wild hair. Why fly back the way we came, I asked myself, when we could just as easily keep flying west and see some things along the way. And thus our plan was hatched...we're going to go around the world.

I suspect it will be a fairly abbreviated trip as we don't have a year (or even six months) to dedicate to the effort. But I think we can probably swing 6 - 8 weeks...and that should be enough to hit some of the major highlights.

The daydreaming is now full-tilt (and is actually teetering on the edge of nascent planning), with an initial itenerary that begins as follows:
DC -> CA
CA -> HI
HI -> New Zealand
NZ -> Australia (East coast)
Aus -> Japan
Japan -> Singapore

At this point, I'm still trying to figure out where we should go next (and I'm toying with going from CA to HI, HI to Japan, then to Australia, then to NZ...need to see what makes the most sense and balance backtracking and flight time etc.) We'll happily consider recommendations if you have any - leave a comment.

Even though it's over 18 months away, I'm stoked. Just being able to plan such a thing assuages my itchy feet.


Dawn said...

I wanna go!!! Girl that sounds like so much fun!

Also, I'm trying so hard to get back into blogging more regular but I wanted to tell you there's a new Friday meme out that's about the Fur Babies. I posted about it today and thought of you with your babies :)

Oh again...I can be ready to go in 18 months. It'll take me that long just to pack! :)

beth said...

Dawn, I'll keep you in mind as a back up in case Tim decides he can't make it. ;) I'm really stoked - though it's been amusing to watch the reaction of friends which ranges from "why" to...well, "why would you want to do that?" I guess not everyone wants to see things...kinda disappointing though.

I'll have to check out the Friday thing - thanks for the head's up.

Gwynne said...

This sounds like a most excellent adventure!! I will be going on a strict diet of celery sticks in order that I might fit in your extra suitcase. ;-)

Around the world. Wow!! I know at least one blogger in NZ and one in Singapore that would surely offer you a cup of coffee or something. ;-)

beth said...

Gwynne, if you fit, you can come! :) I'm really looking forward to it - it's a long way away, but still pretty excited. I absolutely plan to look up Rach while I'm in NZ. I don't know mis_nomer, honestly (I just lurk over there) but should probably unlurk just so that we can have coffee with a local in Singapore. :)

Janie said...

That is an awesome idea!