Quitting work, going to Asia the long way round and other mid life crises


It’s late March in Brighton UK and it’s cold. Still cold. In fact it’s been cold since November and everyone is rather sick of it now. Lengthening days maybe, but it’s still well below zero at night, the sky is as grey today as it has been for months and whole swathes of the country are still buried under snow while TV newsreels show footage of dead, frozen lambs on loop somewhere up north.

Add to that my approaching 40th and the loss of my father last year, followed rather quickly by one of my brothers, and you start to see why I might want to make a change and do something different.

But that’s probably not enough to explain why two days ago I handed in my notice on a well paid, full time job with good benefits and pension, just as the UK hovers on the brink of a triple dip recession. Or why in August my partner and I will fly to Rio and work our way through to Santiago. On to Auckland, Sydney, before arriving in Thailand for Christmas. After which there’s a big blank section that ends with a flight from Singapore to London via Helsinki around 8 months later.

A classic, simple Round The World itinerary. A gap year classic taken by hundreds, if not thousands, of British teenagers every year before heading off to uni.

Except I’m not a teenager and I’m not on a gap year. I’m 39.

So, why?

Some of my friends (and quite a few of my work colleagues) are saying mid life crisis and maybe they’re right. But maybe they’re not! It’s hardly a tattoo or a motorbike.

I’ve been travelling for the last 18 years on and off, ever since I studied French and Spanish at university and spending 9 months living in one or the other. But since then it’s been a weekend here, 2-3 weeks there and a lovely month in India after being made redundant. And by doing that I’ve ticked off most of Western Europe, Hawaii, New York, San Francisco, Australia, Vietnam, Peru, India, Kenya, Hong Kong and Mexico.

But that’s never been enough so now I sit in meetings at work all the time knowing that in a few months I will be turning my back on security and routine and heading off to the unknown.

Now let’s talk tattoos…..

8 thoughts on “Quitting work, going to Asia the long way round and other mid life crises

  1. So extremely excited for you and this big step! It sounds like it will be a grand adventure that will no doubt leave a big impact on your life! Keep me updated!

  2. Congratulations!!! I did a RTW trip that started in 2011. I lost my best friend in 2009 and that was the catalyst. I planned for 10 months and in between continents I lost my mother to pancreatic cancer. 10 months turned into 19 and it has only further fueled this addiction and change in my life. Good on you! It’s the best thing you’ll ever do for yourself. Oh yeah and I’m not a gap year high school or college grad though I kinda look like one :) Looking forward to seeing your travels!

  3. Good on ya.. There is no such thing as an age limit for travel, it can be enjoyed by both young and old. I’m 45 and my hubby 42 and we are both heading off in October for a year’s backpacking travel adventure.. I too plan to be in Thailand for xmas :-) might see you there!

  4. Wow! How exciting and how courageous of you to go after what you really want to do :) Hope you are planning on blogging about your adventure so the rest of us can vicariously participate :-D

  5. It sounds AMAZING, guys! I hope you will be adding to this blog so that I can follow you on your travels and adventures, and will be including photos. Mid life crisis?!?!? What mid life??? A couple of young whipper snappers…that’s what you are! XOX

  6. When ru planning to visit Sri Lanka ;) ??? haha
    Well Good Luck with your journey :) I’m sure it will be filled with wonderful experiences :)

    • Hola María! ¿Qué tal? Espero bien…?

      Claro que sí… Cuando salimos tu vas a ver aquí todo lo que nos pasa! Y después de 3 meses en Perú, Bolivia, Argentina y Chile mi castellano debe mejorarse..!!

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