Many people ask about our backgrounds. Both
of us were born in 1970. We met at high school, dated for seven
years, and married in 1995. We took jobs in the computer industry
(last job for Wes: a product manager at Cisco Systems, last job
for Jill: consultant at Calico Commerce). People ask us if we
struck it rich and decided to travel. No, we didn't strike gold.
We decided to travel because we wanted to do something adventurous
before having children. In 2000, we tried a 4 month sabbatical
to find out if we liked traveling. Then in 2001, we quit our jobs,
sold our possessions, and explored the world, backpacker style,
with an open itinerary. Our trip changed course when Jill became
pregnant in Myanmar. We continued traveling for another 5 months
and came home in May 2004 to surprise our parents. We're living
with them in Maryland, working on a book about our travels, and
waiting for a baby girl to arrive in September 2004.
We wrote this letter before beginning our trip in
"We've entered our thirties, a period that
neither of us thought about as children. Not a big deal for some
people, but we really enjoyed being twenty-something. Maybe you
know that we're obsessed with the passage of time. The bad thing
about time is that it keeps going. So what are we going to do?
We're off to see the world."
"One thing about us, we are too ambitious.
Our packed travel itinerary shows that character flaw. We overdo
things. Furthermore, we are perfectionists who only pretend to
be laid back. A trip of this magnitude, with the inevitability
of screwed up plans, should help us find our zen. We'll also test
our marriage. Can two people spend every waking moment of every
day exploring the world without killing each other?"