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One of my favorite photos. The view out of the back of our car as we left Las Vegas to start our 18 month RTW adventure.
One of my favorite photos. The view out of the back of our car as we left Las Vegas to start our 18 month RTW adventure.

There was my life up until that moment and then things were forever changed by THAT CONVERSATION. We all have moments that completely and utterly change the course of our life forever. THAT CONVERSATION certainly did it for me.

It is funny how innocent moments can sometimes monumentally shift the path of our life. For that reason, I believe in always embracing experiences as they come and remembering that they are happening for a reason. THAT CONVERSATION literally changed me as it was happening. Something woke up inside. Something immediately became different.

There is no other moment in my life where I remember change being brought about in such a rapid way. THAT CONVERSATION happened not because I wanted to change, but because I needed to. In fact, the person I became after THAT CONVERSATION was inside of me all along.

Travel wouldn't be the same without them. (Taken at the Auckland Sky Tower.)
Travel wouldn’t be the same without them. (Taken at the Auckland Sky Tower.)

THAT CONVERSATION is responsible for my past seven years of international travel. THAT CONVERSATION has enabled me to show my son the world. THAT CONVERSATION awoke a crazy and sometimes insane love of travel. THAT CONVERSATION has also created tense and difficult transitional periods in my life and has ensured that many people simply don’t understand me.

The old saying, “Be careful what you wish for” doesn’t apply here. I didn’t wish for THAT CONVERSATION. It happened in a completely innocent way. My life was forever changed by something that a casual acquaintance told me one day eight years ago.

THAT CONVERSATION made me look at travel as a beautiful thing. It cursed me to a life where flying fourteen hours on an airplane is something that I actually look forward to. THAT CONVERSATION is what allows for tears to flow when I am so deeply grateful to be doing what I love.

One of my lifelong travel dreams realized. (Yes I did cry a little!)
One of my lifelong travel dreams realized. (Yes I did cry a little!)

When I had THAT CONVERSATION, the farthest from home I had ever been was Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Today I am a world traveler. My goal used to be to visit one country for every year I have been on earth. Just last year I did away with that goal when I realized I had almost doubled it. My new goal is much simpler. I now strive to seek out new experiences in places that are new to me.

I am not quite sure why I am writing this post. Certainly it helps to remind me of the gratitude I feel for not only THAT CONVERSATION, but for all of my experiences in life thus far and most certainly for my family.

You see, THAT CONVERSATION would not have worked so well if they didn’t agree to travel around the world with me for 18 months in 2007, backpack through Europe for 3 months last year or take any of the countless other crazy trips we have been on. They are my travel partners and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

On this site I will continue to show you how to travel farther for less money. The reason I have spent so much time to learn how to stretch my travel dollars is because of THAT CONVERSATION. The reason I teach anyone who will listen about how to travel for cheap is THAT CONVERSATION. I love hearing from everyone, especially from those people who have a passion for travel like me.

Let me know in the comments if you think I should actually share what was discussed in THAT CONVERSATION!


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  1. Hi Shawn, I enjoy reading articles like this it validates that some things really are unimportant in life and it’s all about creating memories that you can look back and say what a great time you had. I’ve only been doing the points and miles thing for about 12 months so I thoroughly enjoy reading articles about such a great hobby and get tips at the same time 🙂

  2. Shawn,
    I would really like to hear what was discussed during THAT CONVERSATION. We all can have life changing events and we each seem to come closer to one when listening to/reading about another persons experience.


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