Earl Baron - WanderingEarl.com: Back in 1999 I left home for a 3-month backpacking trip to Southeast Asia. That trip has yet to end.
What country are you from?
USA - I grew up in a suburb of Boston
What is your age?
How many countries have you visited?
70 - This only includes countries where I have spent a decent amount of time. Any country where I only pass through the airport or spend a few hours doesn't make the list. And besides, it's not a race. There are plenty of countries that I prefer to visit over and over again instead of heading off to visit somewhere new.
What is your greatest joy of living anywhere?
Interacting with people I would never have interacted with had I not been living a lifestyle that involves significant travel. As the main goal of my travels is to constantly educate myself about the world, there is no better way to learn than by meeting and talking with local people in every country I visit.
Why do you live in many cities in many countries?
I am hungry for knowledge and this hunger keeps me moving, always looking for the next adventure, always looking for the next stage of my global education.
What is your source or sources of money?
Most of my income these days comes from internet marketing that centers around several websites that I run.
How does a person prepare?
You don't prepare. It's impossible to know what to expect. So all a person needs to do is summon the necessary courage and confidence to take that first step towards a life that involves travel. Once the first step is taken, opportunities will appear that you never even knew existed, opportunities that will change your life and help lead you closer to your travel goals.
Apart from that, it is always a good idea to contact other travelers who have been traveling or living in the region(s) you want to visit or live in so that you can obtain some first-hand recommendations about life in the area and what you may need. But don't bring too much. I've been traveling with about 8kg worth of belongings for years and I have everything I could possibly need.
I do recommend purchasing a sarong though, as that is perhaps the most useful travel tool you'll find anywhere. It's a towel, blanket, article of clothing, makeshift bag, sweat rag, rope, sheet, scarf, pillowcase, SOS flag and more, all wrapped into one piece of cloth.
Have a focus when you travel. It is far more rewarding to have goals when you arrive in a new country instead of simply planning to float around for a few months without any purpose. Even having simple goals such as learning some of the language, touring historical sites, learning about the local cuisine or practicing meditation will make a significant difference in how much you benefit from your travel experiences. Aimless wandering, despite often sounding so appealing, can become boring quickly. Focused wandering helps ensure that your travels are always full of purpose.
What mistakes have you made, that you would recommend people avoid?
Don't worry. Don't worry about traveling alone (you will always meet other travelers out there on the road), don't worry about running out of money after a year (you can always find work overseas to help keep you going), don't worry about getting sick or having all of your stuff stolen (these things happen much less than we are led to believe) and don't worry about your family disowning you when you tell them of your plans to travel long-term (they might be upset at first but they'll come around once they see how happy you are).
On a side note, I also recommend that you don't ever put your money in a velcro pocket on the front of your pants. If you do, it probably will be pickpocketed, just as mine was in India.
One Travel Tip?
Get out of your comfort zone because it is only when you challenge yourself in this way that you can truly benefit from the first-hand education that travel provides. By doing so, you will be forced to question and review much of what you have learned in life and to then create your own beliefs based upon what you have witnessed with your own eyes.
Biography, explanation of life of living in many places, the longer story: