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April 19th, 2008 | categorizilation: all categories,China

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The traveler travels by bicycle.

The traveler has 5,000 Euro to last two years.

The traveler sleeps outside, sans-tent.

The traveler is not fazed by the prospect of 5,000m plus high plateaus in Tibet.

The traveler is content with cycling 10 months to get from home to their destination.

The traveler is not content with returning home any other way than by bicycle – another 10 months.

The traveler travels alone.

She is 28 years old.


Marija and I have much in common, and it was a pleasure to meet her on Friday night when she arrived back from her work, teaching eco-awareness in a school in rural southern China.

Marija on the board in Shanghai, China

We are also both in very similar stages of our respective journeys. Marija is about to finish up at GECKO where she works, and begin cycling back to Slovenia. A question we both asked each other was “What next?”. I will be back in New Zealand in August, if all goes to plan. It was a great question to be asked, because I have no idea what the answer is…

Basically, by the time August comes around, I will be more or less broke. In fact, after two years on the road I will be worse than broke. I will still have a NZ$10,000 student loan to pay back. As much as I would have liked to have thought that it would magically disappear during the duration of the journey, it is still there. Funny that.

So it will be time to go to work. Great fun, this galavanting around the globe, but unfortunately it doesn’t pay much.

But work where? I love learning languages, so overseas would be great. But what kind of work? Dunno. First it might be an idea to go back to school. Outdoor education perhaps? But all that costs money.

At the end of the day, Marija and I both agreed that at the very least, we know what is in store for the next several months. A lot of pedalling and pushing our repsective human-powered vehicles towards our respective homes. Plenty of time to mull over the details.

Before I sign off this post, I want to do a shout out to some other great inspiring human-powered travelers I have been blessed enough to come in contact with through the virtual world of the internet:

  • Markus, who I met on my way through Germany on my skateboard, is now cycling to Beijing from Germany. www.cyclingwithoutborders.org
    Wonderfully descriptive photos and journal entries.
  • Andrew Morgan is on his way cycling South America and Africa. www.teacherontwowheels.com
    A very motivated and purposeful journey. Amazing blog posts; very descriptive of the people he meets along the way.

Oh and today it rained. Cold. Grey. Walked / skated around Shanghai with Marija.

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    Permanent Link     Comments (3)

Comment by Aunty Les — April 22, 2008 @ 3:04 pm | post a comment

It will certainly be very strange being in one place for a while when you get back to NZ. I'm sure there must be some job somewhere that needs the kind of skills you have. God knows, anyway, even if you don't.

Comment by marcCO — April 23, 2008 @ 3:25 pm | post a comment

Rob, check http://www.chinawheelie.com , Rob Luxton has same visa problems!

Comment by Daniel N. Lang — April 25, 2008 @ 12:28 am | post a comment

Hey Rob,

I think during your journey you've probably learned one thing at least and that's to look into the future with a big big portion of optimism. I guess you won't have any problems finding a job or new mission that will fill your life.

I wish you all the best for the China leg of your journey!

Daniel, from Rotorua where the first New Zealand single speed championship is about to take place

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