FINALLY (doing what you’ve asked me to do)

OK, so I typically share lessons we learned on the road in my blog, but today is a bit different.

choiceToday I want to share something with you that’s been roaming around in this head of mine for a while.

We’re quickly coming up on our one year anniversary of reaching Ushuaia. One year ago today we were planning out our final approach to the end of the world. We had just made the decision to ditch our original plan of sticking to the western side of Argentina and were studying maps to figure out what was on the other side.

It seems incredible to me that so much has happened in these past twelve months. My life is radically different now than I ever thought it would be.

  • I’ve completed a massive world record bike ride to the ends of the earth – something I never, ever thought I would (or could) do
  • I’ve jumped an enormous emotional hurdle in realizing that I love living in the USA (for now – that could change any moment!)
  • I didn’t go back to teaching (after 21 years in the classroom, I had no idea I could do anything else)
  • I’ve successfully launched three books
  • I’ve branched out in my writing and am writing very different things now than before
  • I’ve pushed myself in my public speaking by joining Toastmasters, have competed in speaking contests (the first stage of my second contest was today!), and have managed to line up a couple of paying public speaking gigs

Frankly, I’ve been amazed at the response I’ve gotten to what I have to say.

This past year I’ve found myself having BIG paradigm shifts in my life and the way I look at myself and my knowledge.

I’m starting to realize that maybe, just maybe, I know more than I think I do.

If you’ve been following along with my blog, you’ve noticed the changes. Rather than focusing on us and our adventures, I’ve been focusing on YOU. I’ve been trying to write about what YOU have told me over the years that you would like to see me offer or address.

I’ve still got tons of ideas, but I’d like to hear from you about what you wish for me to provide. Please keep the ideas coming!

But… (the infamous “But”)…

There is one REALLY BIG request you’ve made that I’ve been holding back on, despite your pleadings and outcries.

I’m contemplating changing my mind and doing something you’ve been asking for since forever.

I’m nervous about doing this because it means putting myself on the line way more than I’ve done in the past.

And I’m also going to need your help.

Anyway, that REALLY BIG request is… (stay tuned until next time)

books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

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About Nancy Sathre-Vogel

After 21 years as a classroom teacher, Nancy Sathre-Vogel finally woke up and realized that life was too short to spend it all with other people's kids. She and her husband quit their jobs and, together with their twin sons, climbed aboard bicycles to see the world. They enjoyed four years cycling as a family - three of them riding from Alaska to Argentina and one exploring the USA and Mexico. Now they are back in Idaho, putting down roots, enjoying life at home, and living a different type of adventure. It's a fairly sure bet that you'll find her either writing on her computer or creating fantastical pieces with the beads she's collected all over the world.

24 thoughts on “FINALLY (doing what you’ve asked me to do)

  1. O.K., I’m just like the cat who ate the cheese, and sat by the mousehole with *baited* breath !! Will “next time” be SOON ??

    [Reply]

    Nancy Reply:

    @Sheilia Scott,
    HA! I have absolutely NO IDEA why I did that. Someone needs to shake some sense into me…

    [Reply]

  2. Much has happened since Addis Ababa when we were colleagues and later parking your three wheeler bike and single bike in our garage when you stopped in Tacoma on your USA trip as a forerunner to your Alcan Hwy experience. You have walked (ridden) the talk. Remember Hawk Mc Ginnis who really walked the talk in his many years hiking the world. I have been priviledged to have known real adventurers knowing that all of you are wiser for the experience which most of us can only dream about. Continue to enjoy each precious moment with your activities now and forever! Blessing to you all!

    [Reply]

    Nancy Reply:

    @Bob,
    Gosh Bob, that was a long time ago! We left Addis in 2002 – when did you leave? It’s so important that we take advantage of every moment and live the life of our dreams!

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  3. Toastmasters is great. No matter how organized we think we are, Toastmasters helps us become more organized. I completed my Silver Certificate, plus the other extras they had.

    [Reply]

    Nancy Reply:

    @vicky,
    Congrats Vicky! I am really impressed with Toastmaster’s! I’ve learned a LOT.

    [Reply]

  4. I was re-reading your blog recently with a map to see some of the choices you made between staying in lowlands vs. Altiplano and Andes (part of some dreaming and scheming :) ). I was curious on two things (1) what other blogs did you find particularly helpful when you made similar choices and (2) are there any cases in hindsight where regretted choices you made. There are some where you didn’t have much choice such as in Bolivia and your initial reactions to Northern Peru weren’t glowing :) , but curious how many choices you might make differently based on what you know in hindsight.

    Others have commented on the “tease” part of your post, so figured I’d get my question as part of the approaching one-year anniversary part.

    [Reply]

    Nancy Reply:

    @Mike,
    Hey Mike! I wouldn’t say I regret any of our decisions except that we missed the southern part of Ecuador. Our visas were running out and it would have been outrageously expensive to extend them for another month. The first month extension was reasonable, but after that the price goes up to a crazy level. We had to take the quickest route to Peru to get out of Ecuador and that meant skipping Cuenca and Las Lajas.

    The decision between the Peruvian mountains and the coast was huge. All the cyclists were telling us to go to the mountains, but our gut was saying stay on the coast. Although I’m sure the mountains would have been gorgeous, I do think the coast was the right choice for us. It wasn’t easy, but was probably easier than the mountain route. And honestly – if I had to pick the most beautiful section of our entire journey, I would probably say the Peruvian coast. The desert there was simply magical.

    If I was to do it over, I would probably climb up to Cuzco from Nazca, which was our initial plan. People told us about all the up and down going that route, whereas going via Arequipa was just one long, steady climb. I don’t know how bad the other road would have been, but it would have been nice to go to Cuzco on the bikes rather than bus.

    I also really, really wanted to ride through the salar in Bolivia, but we didn’t think we would be able to make it through. If I were to do it over again, when I didn’t have to be mindful of pedaling every single mile, I would go to Uyuni knowing we would most likely need to get a ride on the bus or train. That wasn’t an option for us at the time though.

    As far as other blogs – there are so many cyclists that cycle Peru and Bolivia. I don’t know of any particular blogs that are more informative than any others. They’re all good in their own way.

    When are you dreaming for??

    [Reply]

    Mike Vermeulen Reply:

    @Nancy, thank you – this helps.

    I’ve also been taking notes of some other blogs I find on CGOAB and other places with web searches so this also puts some things in context.

    The exact timing is still unclear, but my scheming part was thinking through leaving from Cartegena in June 2013 and heading southbound for 7 to 9 months. That is a little fast for the terrain but not too far off the 6 months it took me for 12000km across Europe/Asia. I still also have to check seasons/wet/dry/etc if that makes sense.

    [Reply]

    Nancy Reply:

    @Mike Vermeulen,
    A lot of people do it in that time frame. We like to go slow and stop to smell the roses, but it’s very doable. You won’t really have to pay attention to seasons except that you’ll need to arrive into Ushuaia between January and April. Otherwise, it’s all doable. We went through winter in the high Andes and it was cold, but not impossible.

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