1. Around the world in 50 days

Welcome dear friend! You are about to embark on the first around the world travel. Keep reading the posts as we will post in chronological order, and with even frequencies, for your convenience.

As you may have deduced by now, dear friend, your guides, at the time some of these words were written, were not the worldly explorers you see before you today. Let us introduce two young students: Vedran, a sympathetic and happy-spirited IT-engineer, and Dilek; a soon-to-be engineer, with a slightly more watchful predisposition.

Dilek and Vedran as Backpackers

Happy! Idealistic! Preparing for, what they thought would be a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. Do not underestimate them, however, for they have sharp minds, able bodies, and a knack for proving everyone wrong. Despite their innocence, there have been many-an-eyebrow risen and several heads shaken. In fact, due to several outside distractions, preparing for the trip has taken more effort than anticipated. For e.g:

When they start fighting you...You know you are close*

Dilek was supporting her studies by working part time at one of Sweden’s largest retail stores. Leaving an employment simply to travel was considered frivolous and a waste of time. Her colleagues lashed out at her, some even physically. Back then, a “round-the-world” travel was considered a luxury. Something not everyone could do. Certainly not students… especially those who came from immigrant families.

Needless to say, Dilek had been anxious right before the trip. Vedran, on the other hand, never allows his spirits to decay because of others’ opinions. He often sees resistance as a sign that he is proceeding towards the road less travelled, and always encourages Dilek to join. That is Vedran for you! The eternal optimist and driving force of trips to come. You are going to want to keep a close eye on him, for just when you think you have seen it all and done it all, he will throw you a curveball that you could never have seen coming.

Now dear friend! We will take a short leave of you and let you hear the rest of the story in the words of your young guides. But do not fret! We will remain close and even check in once in awhile...

Day 1: A Journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step

The Travel Route - Around the world in 50 days

Preparing for this trip had taken several months. Planning the route, booking tickets, finding accommodation, not to mention researching important sights. As we were still students, we had a restricted budget. Therefore, the strategy had been to find cheap (yet clean) accommodation, relatively close to the destinations we wished to visit. That way, we figured, we would save on transport. It turned out to be a rather good game plan and we have continued to deploy it in ensuing trips. Not so much due to budget restrictions anymore, but because we have limited time in each location and freeing yourself from transport is refreshingly efficient.
We left Stockholm midday on the 20th of June and would arrive in Beijing the ensuing day.

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*First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win - quote often attributed to Gandhi: facebook.com/Top100Wonders