Our local town magazine invited us to guest author a short piece about our trip. Here it is for your enjoyment!
Family time: Probably the two words that best describe our nine-month journey around the globe. We set off nearly a year ago and returned to Superior this past April. The opportunity to spend time with family in India and exploring parts of the world were our main objectives and in that we certainly succeeded!
A bit about us: two forty-something parents, Neal and Laxmi, along with our third and fifth grade kids, Ashna and Rohan. We took a break from our careers and Superior Elementary for our “gap year.” We chose to go now since the timing seemed right and homeschooling a fifth and a third grader appeared manageable.
Enough about us…The trip was absolutely amazing and exhilarating! We had the opportunity to explore the far reaches of Earth without a tremendous amount of jet lag or travel exhaustion. That we did it as a family was even more incredible. Our trip took us through five continents, multiple world landmarks, and numerous world-renowned museums. We took a gazillion pictures, flew over 45k miles, researched each city before arriving, and saw far more than we imagined.
The areas we explored were (in order): Galapagos, Quito, Lima, Rio de Janeiro, Kruger National Park, Cape Town, Istanbul, Paris, Rome, Florence, Lucca, Naples, Athens, Mykonos, Cairo, Luxor, Hurghada, Mumbai, Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, seven different cities in Sri Lanka, Bangkok, Siem Reap, Jimbaran and Ubud in Bali, Gili Trawangan and Sengigi in Lombok, Tokyo, and we ended our trip in Los Angeles!
We worked together on establishing the route and the itinerary in each city. Ashna wanted to have cheese in Paris while Rohan wanted to see the Pyramids and the Acropolis. The kids had read all about the Paris catacombs in the “39 Clues” series and both Greek and Egyptian mythology in Rick Riordan novels, so these sites had to be part of the trip.
Since we were on a lengthy break, there was no need to rush through anything. We could and did choose to spend more time at fewer places – both for our own sanity and ability to enjoy ourselves. We took our time in different museums and took many days to homeschool, chill, and just relax at our homes-away-from-homes (usually AirBnB rentals).
Now that we’re back home, we have quickly adjusted to the normalcy of daily life. Knowing where grocery stores are and the ability to read restaurant menus or street signs has been refreshing. Also having clean air and drinkable tap water are luxuries we no longer take for granted. No question that we now have a greater appreciation for all the comforts of life in the USA.
If you see any of us around town, don’t hesitate to stop and ask about the trip. We’ll happily talk your ear off and most likely our favorite place will have changed again! You’re welcome to take a peek at our blog (ourwanderingfamily.wordpress.com) for a few more pictures and trip reports along the way! Happy Travels!