I have been addicted to solo travel for much of my life. I love the feeling of looking around me and seeing things that are strange to me, encountering the odd and the challenging. I’m not by nature an adventurous man, it all worries me endlessly but understand that in life you are only really living when you are in motion. The greatest risk is passivity or retreat.
Detailed plans never work, but my project has some goals. I will travel in my big white Berlingo Car, mostly sleeping in the back but also camping where possible. There will be no adaptions to the vehicle. The equipment I will take will be very simple. A kettle, coffee maker, corkscrew, tools, a cooking ring, cutlery and a plate, washing up bowl, maps, a tent, my laptop, phone and the long cushion off my mums 1970's sofa (to sleep on. It helps my poor back)
I will leave Diss in Norfolk, UK on the 15th September 2018 and over the next three months travel through France, Italy, Greece, Cyprus, Egypt and Israel, arriving in Jerusalem sometime around Christmas. Along the way, I want to take in as much history and archaeology as I can. The journey will be a wandering line, not a straight one.
I am inept in many essential areas related to the trip. This will be an excuse to get better at some things. I will set myself the task of learning some basic car maintenance and repair tasks, improve my skills in photography and learn to write better. The secondary goal of the journey is to write a book of my journey from the front step of my house to Jerusalem (and back again).
I am imposing a strict discipline upon myself. Being the nervy type it’s hard but I will not plan any part of the trip other than those things which must be done in advance. Visas and the like. Improvisation and serendipity is the way to go.
Of course, I’m using some of my own money for this project. I’m retired but to supplement the amount from my savings which I will use, I have set up a lot of part-time jobs over the spring and summer, Exam invigilator, Match Day Football Steward, Crazy golf attendant and so on (working also on the possibility of kids novelty train driver),
To keep my daughters happy though I will need more money than that. Even living on local food, red wine and coffee there will be a shortfall. Hence the crowdfund.
I like Hugh Laurie's little quote. So now is as good a time as any. The book of the trip will be self-published on Amazon. If it sells 66% percent of any income will go to Oxfam. Crowdfunders will get a copy of the book if they give £30 or more.
All donors will have tag with their name and hometown stuck on the back, side windows of the car
I will also be running a daily blog and making regular Facebook posts. Lots of pictures and day by day accounts.