Fare-Thee-Well, World: I’m Coming to America

It’s unbelievable to me, but by the time this post publishes, I will be back in the United States and starting the 3-week-long cross country road trip that will get me home. I’ll have spent my final night in a foreign hotel in Auckland, NZ, and truthfully, it’s surreal. I clearly remember my first night of the Journey in Turkey, finding it unimaginable, frightening and more than a bit exciting that this was the first night of 7 months of nights without a home. And now, it’s my last night spent overseas. And again – it feels unimaginable, frightening and more than a bit exciting.

Still, if this trip has taught me anything – and good god, it’s taught me so much – it’s to embrace “the unknown” because it will soon be “the known” and look pretty damn good – if you strive for it to be so. Good thing, considering my entire post-trip existence pretty much defines “the unknown.”

Now, with most of the Journey in my past, I cannot imagine myself or my future without its experiences informing me. This trip runs through me now, and I am so much the better for having taken it.

And now, it’s time to see my own country, to fulfill another must-do: the great American road trip. It’s the final 3 weeks. America, I’m coming home.


  1. Oh, Val, I’ve had such a nice time tagging along with you! I know it’s not over yet, you’ve got some more to go, but It’s been a joy. Thank you.

  2. What’s the final leg? CA to PA?

  3. Oh, Wow Valerie, that time flew by for me…it must of really flown by for you! Safe travels home and in your home country! I loved your shared words and wisdom in this last post…”embrace the unknown because it will soon be the known” hmmm. “and look pretty good – if you strive for it to be so” …. good stuff my friend. I’ve enjoyed following you on your travels. Can’t wait to catch up one of these days!

  4. Dave Martorana says:

    Welcome home, kid šŸ™‚

  5. hi Val! Safe, happy travels across the US of A. It’s been a treat to follow you on this amazing journey! Look forward to what’s ahead along your journey home. Enjoy!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Can’t wait to catch up and hear all about your adventure. Well, the bits that didn’t make it into your blog. Be safe crossing the country and welcome home!

  7. Hi Valerie, I stumbled across your blog a couple of weeks ago and have loved reading your tales through Australia and New Zealand. Look forward to reading about your road trip across the US of A brings.

    Safe travels home!

  8. I can’t believe it! I’ve read every post … and as you come home, another friend of mine is leaving May 2nd for 10 months abroad … what a world.

    America loves ya, Baby! Welcome home. And remember that old American road-trippin’ motto:
    Ass, Gas or Grass. No one rides for free.

  9. just promise PROMISE! on your eastward trek that you will not go anywhere near the bishops lodge or the co-ed tub at ten thous waves without me! love you and can’t wait to give you a big welcome home hug! xoxoxo