Frequently Asked Questions
I recieve, rightfully so, lots of questions about my trek. I hope that I can answer some of my most frequently asked questions here. If you still have a question about anything, please reach out!
What do your parents think about all of this?
Universally, no matter where I am, this is my most frequently asked question by a mile. My parents are very supportive. It took a while for my dad to come around, but my mom was excited from the very beginning. They both obviously worry when I travel (my dad much more so), but are excited about everything and sometimes even join me on my travels.
How long do you spend in every country?
Usually 1-3 days, but sometimes I stay for longer and sometimes I just spend a few hours in a country.
Why didn't you spend more time in a certain country?
I would love to spend weeks everywhere that I go, but, unfortunately, there are constraints to my travel. There are actually four major reasons why I am unable to spend long amounts of time in most places:
1. Safety - if a country is not safe right now then I won't be staying longer than necessary. But I do hope to visit many of these countries again in the future once there is greater stability.
2. Flights - this is the most frustrating reason, in my opinion. In Central Asia or the South Pacific, for instance, there are very infrequent flights. Due to the nature of my trip I can't afford to wait around a week for the next flight and have to keep time constraints in mind, so I often find myself rushed onto an earlier flight than I would like to take.
3. Money - my travels are very much on a budget. Some places are simply too expensive for me to afford spending long amounts of time there at the moment.
4. I've Been Before / I'll Be Going Again Soon - I only stopped through the Ireland airport on this trip. Why? Because I spent a week there two years ago. I only stayed in Tokyo for two days. Why? Because I'll be going back for a month for the Olympics in 2020. In my opinion this is the easiest reason to deal with spending little time in a country.
Do you ever get lonely?
I actually don't. I enjoy solo travel and have done it extensively even before starting this trip. I definitely love when I have family or friends join me on a trip, but I'm perfectly fine on my own.
What about homesick?
This is a little more common, especially when I miss my dogs. But my trips are usually not very long (1-2 months) so this is not really an issue either.
Have you ever felt unsafe?
Other than an incident where I mistook firecrackers for gunfire (and, subsequently, hid in a bathroom for an hour and called the US Embassy in Peru) I have had no incidents. People are very kind and helpful all around the world.
Are you going to North Korea?
Due to the US imposed travel ban I am legally unable to enter the country at this time. But that isn’t going to stop me from trying! I have applied for the special validation passport and am waiting to hear back. If nothing else I will visit the DMZ, where I will be able to at least step into the country. The good news is that Guinness has acknowledged this limitation and will not hold it against me as all records have to be fair for all participants, and there is nothing that I can do about the ban.