Passepartout – literally ‘goes everywhere’, was the travelling companion of Phileas Fogg, the protagonist of Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days.
We both graduated from the University of Glasgow in June 2014. We had already decided that we wanted to do a ski season, so having kept ourselves variously occupied for the rest of the Summer and Autumn, we headed for the French Alps at the end of November and spent a hugely enjoyable five months working and skiing in the Three Valleys. During that time, we formulated a vague plan to go away to New Zealand for a year (those plans, as you will see, are almost as vague today). After a couple of weeks in the Balkans in May we returned home and have spent the last twelve months working away, saving up and getting slowly more and more excited about our trip.
We are starting our trip with three weeks in California. On Monday, 9th May we flew to San Francisco, to stay with Gillian’s school-friend Zoe in Palo Alto for a week, during which time we are exploring San Francisco and the surrounding area. On 15th May we are running the famous ‘Bay to Breakers’ fun run, across San Francisco from the Bay to the Pacific Ocean. We will then hire a car, and spend the next two weeks driving down Highway 1 to Los Angeles and San Diego, then back to San Francisco via the Joshua Tree, Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks.
On 30th May we fly to Christchurch, New Zealand, where we have three nights’ accommodation booked in a hostel. We have 12-month visas for New Zealand, but what happens next is, at the moment, anyone’s guess. We will be arriving with the snow, and hope to ski as much as possible during the season (June – September), and so will be looking to find jobs near the prime ski areas in order to fund it.
In the longer term, we would like to visit as many places as possible, whether that be using New Zealand as a base to travel to the ‘nearby’ island nations, or quitting New Zealand completely and moving on elsewhere. We will let you know more when we do!
The idea for adding yet another travel blog to the plethora already in existence was primarily to keep our families updated and our friends envious. Having found other travel blogs to be a source of inspiration initially, and latterly a useful planning resource, it is hoped that we can make this blog similarly inspirational and useful to others, but that depends rather too heavily on our own diligence and ability for my liking. The ideal, obviously, is that we find our niche, the blog goes viral, we sell out completely, earn thousands from advertising and commissions and then get to spend the rest of our lives as professional travel writers. In reality if the readership extends at all beyond our respective mothers I will call that success.