Tag Archives: passport

On the Fence, or Over the Border?

A lot of new developments have been underway in the time since I’ve updated this blog. John, the Swede I’d initially set off with, flew back to Sweden when he’d heard that his younger sister was in a medically-induced coma after a DUI accident. We parted ways in Richmond, VA, after which I slowly meandered west as I made my way down to GA and up to MI. While I was staying with friends in Grand Rapids, MI, I learned that John’s sister had been doing better and that he had flown back to Richmond, but this time he wanted to remain stationary…so I decided to stay the course and continue going west. I met another hitchhiker named John just outside of Madison, WI, and traveled over to Denver, CO with him before parting ways and spending some time at my buddy’s place in Boulder. With enough days of work and travel, I’ve finally made it to my Aunt’s place in San Antonio, TX. Ever since my plans had changed for my travel partner, I’d been struggling with the prospect of following through with the original plan and facing whatever was on the other side of the border by myself. What I’m doing has been strongly discouraged by most of the people close to me and my family members, but ultimately I knew the decision would be a matter of how mentally/psychologically prepared I felt to go for it. However, my resolve has grown stronger with each passing day. I’d say I’m 98.8463% sure that I’ll be getting this show on the road in the near future; possibly heading into Mexico as soon as the first week of September. Only time will tell…

[Update: I’ve purchased a Greyhound bus ticket scheduled for arrival in Mexico City the night of September 3rd, 2014. I’ve also exchanged $200 USD for $2,450 MXN (around $185 USD), mostly in 100/200 peso denominations (with the exception of one 500 peso bill and one 50 peso bill). In addition to national currency, I have a couple hundred USD in cash, as well as a couple hundred transferred to a VISA traveler’s debit card. I’ve made a cheatsheet of Spanish phrases that I feel might come in handy along the way, as well as a currency conversion chart for USD, Mexican pesos, quetzales (Guatemala), Salvadoran Colónes (El Salvador), lempiras (Honduras), córdobas (Nicaragua), and colónes (Costa Rica). One Belize dollar = 2 USD, and one Panamanian balboa = 1 USD, so I think I can figure out the math if I wind up in those countries. Other than that, I think I’m just going to take things day-by-day and see how things go.]

Crossing Borders and Pushing Boundaries

If you’d like to get an idea of what I’m looking at for my next big trip, check out my page titled “My Upcoming Venture: USA to Mexico (And Beyond).” I’ve also posted my “Mission Statement” page, which can be found in the same section. If I have time I’ll try to include a modified packing list geared toward the climate/geography of this particular region, which I’d like to supplement with some photos of my equipment (and possibly an overall weight calculation if I get around to it) for a more visual representation of the gear itself–and a general breakdown of what I’m dealing with, preparation-wise.

I’ve only tried hitchhiking once before, but that several-week 7,000+ mile journey around my home country whet my appetite for exploring new frontiers in alternative travel. I’d like to revisit hitchhiking for practical reasons (after the costs of important equipment/immunizations, I’m back on a shoestring budget) for the pursuit of experiences leading me deeper into the adventure of the unknown, presumably on a whole new playing field. I don’t count on making it as far as Mexico–or even out of the northeast USA, for that matter–but it is still an absolutely worthwhile prospect for me. As far as I’m concerned, preparation has a vaguely similar quality to expectation–yet it is a more opportunistic approach that openly takes into account the free dynamics of unhindered potential. As the old adage goes: “The journey is the destination.”