Happy New Year!

Just a really quick one this time as it’s nearly 6.30pm in Vietnam and we have some partying to do. Well, its more like have a couple of beers sitting on our balcony in Nha Trang and then have dinner in one of the hundreds of restaurants which are just a stone’s throw from our guest house. Whether we stay up for the strike of 12 remains to be decided.

Anyway, what a year. During our lounging on the beach today, I had time to reflect on the past 12 months (while Sat was busy with chapter 18 of his book) and when I think back to what we were doing this time last year, I have to pinch myself as we’re actually travelling around the world, just as we planned! Suppose I wouldn’t be much of a life coach otherwise – you have to focus on what you want and do everything you can to make it happen.

Not that you need a reminder but here’s a quick zip through 2009 month by month:

January – Sat’s on gardening leave (aka playing on the x-box as much as possible). We spend a week in India with Sat’s parents to determine whether we can spend a few months with them once we start our travels. The weather’s pretty rubbish and we miss our flight back to London! The next time we come to India it’ll be for 4 months – gulp.

February – Sat’s still on the x-box and he starts to make progress on the book he’s spent 15 years planning! I spend most of my time at work career coaching colleagues.

March – An enjoyable weekend in the Lake District for Liz’s 40th birthday. It’s Sat’s birthday the same weekend and Liverpool gift him a 4-1 win over Man Utd! Plans for our great escape are in the final stages and I finish work at KSF.

April – We rent out the house, pack our bags and leave on the first of our 3 stints travelling just after the Easter weekend. We treat the first couple of weeks as a holiday and then it’s in at the deep-end for both me and Sat: me teaching English at the local village school, Sat living with his parents for the first time in 20-odd years!

May – teaching comes to an abrupt halt due to the riots in the Punjab. The weather’s getting hotter and the carpenters making the kitchen cupboards are taking an eternity.

June – a welcome visit from Jag goes by all too quickly so we jet off to Goa for a week. Just in time for the monsoon! At the end of the month Sat and I leave for the very northern region of India called Ladakh. A relief to the incessant heat of the Punjab at 54 degrees!

July – spend the month enjoying Leh and the surrounding areas. Our 4 months in India come to an end and we fly back to the UK on the 31st.

August – the month is spent enjoying time with friends and family plus consuming all the food and drink we’ve missed while we were away, this is particularly evident at the Molyneaux family BBQ and at Satpal & Parm’s 25th wedding anniversary party. The month goes all too quickly and soon we’re packing our bags yet again.

September – a short fortnight with mum back at the farm in the Punjab before going back to Delhi to catch our flight to Kathmandu. We’d been looking forward to trekking in Nepal for ages. Even investing in camping gear (tent, stove, waterproof matches, the lot!) – pity we didn’t use any of it! The decision to trek in from Jiri seemed a good idea at the time – we didn’t think that way 8 days later when we were knackered and desperate for some tasty food!

October – our trek in Nepal continues for the first 2 weeks of the month. We finally get to see Everest and we make some more good friends along the way. Fly back to the UK for the second time on the 21st – countdown to Gill & Andy’s wedding! The 10 days prior to the wedding fly by and the day itself is one that will stay in our memories for a long, long time. Everything was perfect. Then we had to figure out our plans for stage 3 of our travelling – the big round the world trip.

November – This was an odd month for us. Felt a bit in limbo because we hadn’t got anything planned at this point and we were relying on the generosity of family to stay with since our place was still rented out. So we bit the bullet and decided to leave at the end of the month and with flights booked our first stop would be Bangkok on 1st December.

December – a quick skip through Thailand and a week in Cambodia brought us to Vietnam. We’ve been away one month exactly and it’s been a time full of adventures and experiences.

It’s New Year’s Eve and when we look back on the last 12 months, we can certainly be satisfied with our achievements. Sat wanted to write a book (it’s virtually complete), I wanted to spread the good word on life coaching (I do at every opportunity!) and we both wanted to travel around the world (we’re in Vietnam today with many more countries still to visit).

So all in all, a pretty good year in a time where many might not have seen the opportunities that we did. We’re having a great time and enjoying life. We wish you a happy, healthy and successful 2010, and look forward to sharing more of our adventures with you in the months to come.

Love & hugs

Jo & Sat


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