The reason for my wanderlust and my gap year substitute! I went straight from college to university and did not do the whole Gap Year thing, that so many 18 year olds see as a rite of passage. It was a combination of my spontaneous application to university (the month before) and my negative teenage outlook on life that led to this. Compared to present-me, pre-university me was socially inept, i had no job, average A-Levels, no motivation. As for the year after university…well, i spent most of it either working or on a train going to visit the (now ex) boyfriend. So when that ended, i was single, inevitably heartbroken, unemployed and a right mess.
So what do scorned women do after the gin has been downed and all the Disney films have been watched over and over? They plan a holiday! That’s exactly what i did. It was the best alcohol-fueled idea i ever had!
Three months later, savings all used up, i boarded a plane for New York. Trek America has a variety of routes and tours that you can take and mine was called the “Southern Sun”. This particular trek starts at New York, crosses through 16 states and finishes up in Los Angeles. So there i was in the hotel lobby, about to spend the next 3 weeks with 11 strangers and a trek leader.
The Trek Family
From Left to Right: Beom (S. Korea), Ingrid (Tasmania), Lisa (UK), Simon (Germany), Natalie (UK), Me (UK), Rob (UK), Anthony (UK), Simon (Germany), Chang (S. Korea), Daniel (Germany), Charlotte (UK) and in front is our trek leader, Steve (USA)
You start of as strangers, then friends and then family. A bit of a weird family, but it kinda worked! No arguments, no bitching…a lot of van snoozing…i guess we were just lucky that we were all awesome and that nobody was a complete douche bag. Although we all had our moments, i know i did!
I miss the van so much! This vehicle was also a comfy (in certain seats and positions) place to sleep for the majority of the trek family. I think i only managed a maximum of 2 minutes of shut eye throughout the entire journey. The below photo was taken on one of the many days that i was riding shotgun.
Our Extended Family
Because the Southern Sun is a really popular trip, they often have two vans running parallel. Both vans are separate but you see eachother every single day at the campsites and on some activities. These guys were our extended family!