In a few weeks we will be boarding this ship for a 125-day trip around the world. Why would we do such a thing? Circumnavigating the globe is certainly nothing new today. We know one guy who is doing it now for the 11th time. A former Navy friend laughed when we told him our plan, indicating it was no big deal. He had done it for five years aboard an aircraft carrier. We’re not blazing any new trails. We won’t be facing any particular dangers or hardships, as did Ferdinand Magellan in 1519. There will likely be no mutinies and it’s highly unlikely the ship will sink. We’ll have plenty to eat and we’ll have a comfortable bed to sleep in. Even the ports we stop in will be pretty tame: Shanghai, Colombo, Osaka, Singapore, for example. We can think of so many reasons why we shouldn’t take this trip:
- It takes too long
- Traveling on a cruise ship is environmentally unfriendly
- It’s decadent
- Being on a cruise ship encourages the exploitation of crew members from developing nations
- You don’t get a chance to really experience any destinations, you just see them
- It’s not really “travelling”
- It’s only for old people who have nothing better to do
- We would be better off spending our time fretting about the impending Trump presidency and commiserating with our Facebook friends as we worry about the future of the country
The list goes on and on.
So why do this? For one, we’ve never done it before. OK, so there are a lot of things we’ve never done, like walking on hot coals or eating live frogs, but going around the world on a ship seems like something special. We want to, at least once in our lives, get an appreciation of how big, or small, the world really is, by traveling at a speed not experienced in an airplane. We want to wake up in the morning, walk around the deck and see nothing but water, for days.
For Tanya, it’s a chance to relax after a lifetime of work, caring for others, and to look at the four months on board as a “spa experience”. For Jay, it’s a chance to read some of the books he’s never taken the time to finish. His Kindle is flush with classics, including the ever-popular “War and Peace”, the complete works of Edgar Allan Poe, Mark Twain, Robert Louis Stevenson and Jules Verne. And, for both of us, it will be an opportunity to meet some new people, a few of which are bound to become long-time friends.
Trump will become president no matter what we do. The world’s problems will continue whether we’re in the middle of the ocean or on land. From a carbon-footprint standpoint, the ship is fully booked so if we weren’t there someone else would just take our place. Just maybe this will be our opportunity to rejuvenate and gain perspective. In any case, we’ll always be laughing and we look forward to sharing our experiences with you.