It’s March 2007, and travel blogger, Gary Arndt has just sold his house. Out of the blue, he decides to travel the world and never lay his hat down again. Ever…..
Today, July 2011, Gary is still travelling the world and is currently in Teguise, Lanzarote according to his blog’s location update. Could this be the true definition of the “travel bug”? We travel bloggers all claim to have it, but as it turns out, it’s truly a rare case which has been overstated over the years – just like the common cold and “Influenza”.
So how does this make me feel as a travel writer? I feel as though I’ve claimed to have the flu, when really I have a mild case of the common cold.
It’s inspiring to know that the blogging brains behind Everything-Everywhere.com has taken such a big leap of faith, so much so that he sold his home to embark on his very own adventure. I wish I had the gumption. But maybe my time isn’t here yet…..maybe a few more minor travel viruses will slowly infect my blood and morph into the full blown disease until it’s utterly irreversible.
All I know is that with Gary, it’s official. After a short interview with some quick fire questions about his life, I can provide my professional analysis; he is definitely a terminal patient to the travel bug.
Interview with World Travel Guide Writer, Gary Arndt
Q. What inspired you to start travelling back in 2007 and who did you leave behind?
I hit a point where I didn’t know what to do with my life. I had been on a quick around-the-world trip for business back in 1999 and I really enjoyed it. I knew I loved travelling, so that is what I decided to do. I can’t say I really left anyone behind. I lived hours from my family, I wasn’t married or in a relationship and I didn’t have any kids or pets. I keep in touch with my friends still, so I never thought of it as leaving anything behind.
Q. What has been your favourite place / country so far and why?
I don’t have a single, favourite place or country. Different places are like different people. Some might be great for some things but not for others. It is hard to compare a large city like Hong Kong to an island like Rarotonga to the Rocky Mountains to the desert of Wadi Rum, Jordan. I always compare it to asking a mother who her favourite child is.
Q. What is the one home luxury that you miss?
My 27″ iMac
Q. Are you looking for somewhere to lay your hat eventually?
No. I have a hard time staying put for more than a few months. Eventually I have to hit the road again. Even if I dramatically slow down, I’ll probably keep moving.
Q. How do you overcome loneliness on your travels?
I meet new people every day and I am in contact with thousands of people online via Twitter and Facebook. Loneliness is seldom a problem. In most of the major cities I visit I am contacted by my readers and often meet up for dinner or drinks.
Q. Do you look for romance on your travels?
I don’t go looking for it. There are a host of issues for why it is more difficult than a romantic novel might make it seem. Culture and language are the big ones, but the biggest of all is time. By the time you can get to know someone, I’m off to the next place. I’ve had a wonderful time with several women I’ve met travelling, but it hasn’t been able to lead to anything.
Q. Who are the most interesting / inspiring people you’ve met on the road?
There have been so many people I’ve met, it is hard to list them all. I met one guy who was a window maker from the Ukraine who was traveling in Egypt and Jordan. He was on the tightest budget I have ever seen anyone travel with. He spent an entire month in Egypt on $300.
Q. What’s the best dish /cuisine you’ve tasted on your travels?
For my 4th anniversary of travelling I came up with a list of my favourite cuisines. Japan, Argentina and Spain top the list. I’d have a hard time coming up with just one dish. Many of the great dishes I’ve had I don’t even know the name. One great one is the national dish of Tahiti: Poisson Cru.