“That shower is freezing!” Neil jumped out of the bathroom with ferocity. Our apartment on Hvar Island sat on the shady side of a hill, surrounded by pomegranate and lime trees. The sun doesn’t hit the windows until noon so morning showers can be chilly. For us it was ice cold and it made us grumpy, made us think about another 4 months on the road in apartments and cities that may also have plumbing issues.
Winter was going to be cold in Europe. So after a round of cold water rinses on a windy morning, we panicked and starting looking up flights to find a way to get a late holiday in the warmer months. With a departure date three weeks away, flights to Thailand were bonkers, topping $800 per passenger. We could go overland to Turkey. Western Europe was out since we’d already burned through our Schengen Visa. Asia was too expensive. Then Neil said, “How much to go home?”
We’d been thinking about this for some time. Our friend Paul from Total-Hvar.com had advised us that travel blogging was about niche, super niche. Find something that no one else is talking about. Find something that people need to know about. Then “murder it.” Lay your claim over that digital domain and reign supreme.
As two travel bloggers, Neil and I were happy with World WInder’s growth in our first eighteen months. But we knew we could do better. Improving our blogozine and building a life around sharing our experiences seemed like a great life to me. But our problem was that on the road it is almost impossible.
So our solution was simple: go home, go niche.
After a quick search for flights, our gap year adventures have come to a pause. Going home was cheaper than getting to Thailand or Japan. Going home meant time with our families and watching NFL football on Sundays. Going home meant having a home, being with friends and eating our faces off during the holidays. But we had a consolation prize: London.
On the way, we had a non-Schengen week stop in England where the World Travel Market was having its annual convention. Invited to two great blogger parties, we couldn’t resist ending our trip with a big bang. Our friend Dylan the Traveling Editor hosted over 50 online writers, treating us to recipes from his up and coming cook book. Hostel Bookers threw their first Travel Blogger Award Party too and we danced past midnight in London’s SOHO. Not a bad way to end it all. Over one year on the road. Fourteen months and fourteen countries. But if Neil and I do it right, this will only be the beginning.
Note: Neil and I saved money for over 5 years in preparation for our career break. We knew we wanted to volunteer and teach overseas again (10 years after our first jaunt abroad). We built this blogozine as a companion site for other travelers looking to change their lives just for a bit and taste what the world has to offer. If you’re thinking of doing the same, you are not alone. There are many reasons why you should travel and take a gap year. And there are thousands of people doing it right now! Don’t think of it as one of those last minute, late holidays. Research, learn, and then go.