He Said/She Said: 10 Years Traveling

He Said/She Said: 10 Years Traveling

We went to Machu Picchu on our first date, exactly ten years ago.  Since then we’ve traveled the world, been married atop Mt. Kilimanjaro, and shared innumerable adventures.  Here are our reflections on traveling the globe and enjoying life together for the past decade.

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HE SAID…

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I remember the day I found out LOCAVORista was going to visit me.  Six months into a year of studying in Valparaiso, Chile she responded “yes” to meeting me in Peru.  Youthfully optimistic, I believed she was the one, that all was right in the universe as we’d be together.  This was a major revelation considering we had yet to have gone on a date.  All I knew was that months of writing love letters had paid off, I had convinced a woman to fly to another continent through snail mail.  To date, this is my life’s greatest accomplishment.

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LOCAVORista and I along the Inca Trail in 2002.

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Since that first trip we’ve traveled the world together, creating shared memories of adventures, oddball characters, and mishaps.  If I were traveling solo many of these memories would be difficult to explain and impossible to believe as “you just had to be there”.  Traveling with LOCAVORista gives me a witness, someone to say, “yep, that actually happened”, and more importantly these stories, our stories, are bonds that connect us.  By being in these places together, traveling the world together, we have deepened our reservoir of shared experience and knowledge about each other.

We’ve been able to go to the places we have because we’re very compatible travelers, thriving on problem solving and curiosity.  To handle the All-Time Togetherness of travel we separate tasks (find out how we do this in Division of Labor) in an effort to ease the burden on each other.  Most importantly though, is that we share an interest in cultural sights (“nice to see, but let’s not spend all day there…”) and budgeting (“for the price I’m willing to share the bathroom with cockroaches…).  At the ten year anniversary of traveling together it’s clear we’ll make it many more miles and years together.

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SHE SAID…

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While thinkCHUA is pleased with himself for coaxing me to come visit him in South America through suave love letters (yes, they were amazing!); what is much more impressive to me is that we have stayed together past that first date in Peru. There is no way I could imagine doing this trip without him.  Anyone who has been in a relationship before knows that they aren’t easy in the best of circumstances, much less while traveling through 20+ countries and living out of a backpack.

We have become quite the dynamic duo, his logical side compliments my spontaneous and emotional side.  We respect each other and listen to each others opinions.  But what I think has really made us able to endure so much is that we both have the curiosity of a cat with nine lives.  We’re always excited for the next destination and share the burdens of trip planning in order to insure we both have something to look forward to.  Not only has this allowed us to see each other from a new perspective, but taken us to some pretty interesting places.

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Our wedding photo…

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There is no one I would rather have spent the past ten years traveling with.  Traveling as a couple has strengthened our relationship and given us the opportunity to truly live and grow together writing our own story.  We compliment each other so well and I know I wouldn’t still be on the road with out him by my side.  Having a partner to laugh, and sometimes cry with makes a nomadic lifestyle much more rewarding and the stories better to tell later.  As soon as it’s not fun anymore we’ll come home, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

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YOUR TURN: What have you learned by traveling as a couple?  What would you recommend to people setting out together?  Share your story in the comments below…


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Comments

» Mom A :
Aug 15, 2012

I just wrote to LOCAVORista’s dad in my 40th Anniversary card to him that we travel together much better than we dance together and it has made us much closer. A set of pictures I have given him are dated: 1981 – Salzburgh with roses come up from his backpack; 1982, LOCAVORista’s (then known by another name) head popping up our of his backpack. We stayed in the country for awhile after that but by the time she was 8 we took her and her almost 5 year old brother to Kyoto, Tokyo and Singapore. We seem to remember the history of our lives by our travels to a great extent! Now that we no longer work for a living, our friends think we can’t sit still, but gee – we have been home since March and we waited until August to leave the state!

LOCAVORista Reply:

Mom, just like us you and Dad have created shared stories through travel. It is the best way to learn about your partner and enjoying changing and growing together! Happy Anniversary!

» Bka :
Aug 16, 2012

Here I thought we danced pretty well together, what do I know!?!……we’re off to Chicago on megabus to celebrate 40 years of blissfull love, that is after I just returned from 11 days in Sturgis…..not only have we traveled as a couple, but as a family as well, small prep for your current adventure, I would like to think…..I have always felt a couple should travel abroad prior to marriage and that you did……my recollections of the Peruvian connection as the “outside father” , would provide a bit of a different spin, but obviously has things have worked out incredibly well……how many different kinds of anniversary dates are you going to celebrate?…..love you dad

LOCAVORista Reply:

Dad, family travel definitely prepared me for world travel (even though nothing can prepare you for India). I agree with your advice to travel as a couple before getting married you learn a lot about each other. Happy Anniversary!

» Bethany ~ twoOregonians :
Aug 17, 2012

Aw, I love your story and your style. So cool to see how spouses/best friends can complement and add joy to each other’s lives.

We’ve been friends for 21 years, but we’ve only been on this full-time-intensive travel for seven months, and in that short time we’ve learned so many new lessons about listening and responding to the other person. Taking time for hash-it-out conversations is a must, whether talking about responses and experiences in other cultures or talking about personal frustrations or desires in the midst of life on the road.

Congrats on a decade, you two! Well done :)
Read Bethany ~ twoOregonians’s awesome post (Chaos Is.) Beirut, Lebanon

LOCAVORista Reply:

Bethany, thanks for the compliments. We have had fun following you and Ted as well as seeing how another couple is living their dreams together. Congrats to you and keep in enjoying the journey!

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About the Author

thinkCHUA: Photographing and documenting the world on a 3 year round-the-world trip to help future travelers discover new places, travel longer and enjoy the world's great experiences.

About the Author
thinkCHUA: Photographing and documenting the world on a 3 year round-the-world trip to help future travelers discover new places, travel longer and enjoy the world's great experiences.
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