Hello! We sold our van July 27 and returned to the USA on August 22. Our trip in the van took us through the USA, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and Paraguay. Once we sold the van we also visited Argentina and Uruguay. In total that’s 16 countries, make it 18 if you include the steps we took into Chile from Bolivia and the bus ride through Brazilian territory on our way to Iguazu falls and at the Itaipu dam. For Shannon, 11 of those countries were first time visits, for Jesse, 8.

We enjoyed for a few days the comforts and familiarity of home in the United States…speaking English, clean and more healthful food, etc. Now we are up in Boston, starting our new life. I still have a few posts to close out our trip so will work on getting those up.

For new people, this is the blog for our travels and it did help us keep in touch with everyone who cares about us on our . We left the Seattle area in November 2017 and visited Mexico and Central America before shipping our van to South America and continuing on. Spanish learning is high on the list, but so is an attempt at seeing a different part of life in these places that may be more accessible through independent overland travel.

We traveled in a blue van that as of November 2017 does not have a name, and never ended up getting one – it was only known to us as 1999 GMC Safari AWD. We worked to make it more habitable – removing the rear seats, ripping up carpeting, installing insulation, a bed, shelving, a 2nd battery and solar panel, awning, roof vent/fan, curtains, refrigerator, cedar wood ceiling, exterior and interior lighting, etc. Along the way we tried our hands at some auto mechanics – messing around with the front brakes, ball joints, control arms, transfer case – and supported the Kitsap county auto repair shop industry and Seattle area junk yards with transmission and differential rebuilds, engine and suspension work, and A/C repair. This left us with a fairly comfortable, reasonably reliable, rather non-descript blue van to help us go on some adventures!