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#47 Four months on the road

Update #47 Published on update

We left Switzerland on December 24th, 2023. Exactly four months later, we are completing the first leg of our journey. We have arrived in Hanoi (Vietnam) and we'll settle down here for a month or two.

On the way, we realized that the overland itinerary from Europe to Asia is taken by many. We have made a few great friends who traveled alongside us wherever our paths crossed. They made our adventures so much brighter, and I am forever grateful for those encounters.

Four months of active traveling, four months of constant moving, no time to get used to a bed, and even less to get used to a city.

We took our time getting to Vietnam, spending full weeks in cities that weren't considered "touristy" — simply to create spaces to breathe, slow down, get accustomed to the changing scenery. However, it still feels like we have been traveling "too fast". We had a goal in mind (getting to Southeast Asia by May) and moved forward accordingly. This means we "skipped" a lot of things and made choices to drastically slow down in areas that might seem odd. Not to do anything, mind you ; just to take it all in.

We heard of this backpacker, hitchhiking his way across the world, just a few countries behind us. He was supposed to travel for two years, but is already on his way back after six months — burnt out. On the other hand, we met this guy in a hostel, who has been jumping from city to city, from dorm to dorm, for two full years. The duration he spends on average in one location is two weeks ; his max so far has been six weeks.

Travel burnout seems to be a thing. Everyone has their own threshold. For us, it feels like now would be a good time for a longer break. Settling down in Hanoi — a city we know and love — seems like the perfect choice. We are now back in (or pretty close to) our comfort zone. We are still discovering new things every day, but in a context familiar enough to be able to think further than the day-to-day logistics.

During this parenthesis, I'd love to take the time to process the last hectic months, look back on the places and experiences we have been through. Documenting it on (for memories) and maybe even creating a small analog zine out of it (for fun!). Of course, there will also be plenty of planning and decision-making for the rest of the journey. But let's not get ahead of ourselves.

Until then ENDCHAR

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