An Epic Farewell to Asia

by Mike Still
An Epic Farewell to Asia

Life has been crazy lately, personally, professionally and passionately crazy.  In no small part due to the fact that I’m moving out of Korea in March 2017!  I’ve got a tentative arrival planned for Europe months later but regardless of where I end up I’ll likely be saying goodbye to Asia, my home for the last 3 years.

Rickshaw Run logo designed by Jonathan Gregory, November 2006.

Rickshaw Run logo designed by Jonathan Gregory, November 2006.

Before actually bidding adieu to this continent I’ll embark on the most epic road trip I’ve ever conceived and what better way to kick off an adventure of this magnitude with the Adventurist’s Rickshaw Run?  Rather than explain this 3000 km journey through India its easier to just show you this video.

My Seoul buddy, Joe, first told me about the Rickshaw run on a night out in Hongdae.  I was instantly interested but didn’t solidify my plans to go until we had some time to hash out some details on Muuido Island.  We’re still finalizing our team and choosing a charity but are excited to venture from Jaipur all the way south to Kerala in glorified lawnmowers!


This is our crew: 2 Rickshaws, 2 Aussies, 2 Americans and 2 Kiwis!  We are going for a Pirate Theme and hope to have the rickshaws painted like boats.

Rickshaw 1: Morning Glory

Me – “You guys realize we won’t be able to communicate in GIFs once we are in India”
Joe – “Only weirdos would pay money to drive rickshaws through India.”
Ben – “Woah woah woah I ain’t no weirdo… Naaaah who am I kidding, I’m full on loco ese… I wonder what kind of fireworks they have in India”

pirate-1174817_1280

Rickshaw 2: Afternoon Delight

Sarah – “Nah Ming can do that…”
Ming –  “?? start with vindaloo or work your way up?”
Tristan – “He just needs to ask his girlfriend first”


Let me know if you have any tips for our trip or happen to know someone or a company who wants to sponsor our venture with camera gear or a donation to a local Indian charity (I’m pulling for a children’s or educational charity but we haven’t picked one yet and the Adventurists might actually choose for us)

Cover Shot

After the Rickshaw Run I’ll start an indefinite backpacking trip.  My goal is to stick to land crossings as I head north to Nepal for some Himalayan trekking before making my way to Myanmar.  From there I’ll continue east through Laos to Vietnam.  I have high hopes of making it to Vietnam before the rainy season and buying a motorcycle in Hanoi.  The drive south to Ho Chi Minh City is roughly a thousand miles but I’ll make it longer by exploring every nook and cranny along the way.

7 Sunset Lanterns

After that the plan gets a little hazier.  I will undoubtedly want to keep traveling to Cambodia and Thailand and perhaps this blog will help make that possible.  Alternatively I head back to the classroom and put this masters degree to use by following my other dream of teaching in Europe.  That could mean spending the summer in Germany, Spain or some other Mediterranean paradise while looking for a teaching job starting Sept. 2017.  That also could mean visiting the states.

Ulleungdo Sunset

Part of what makes this trip so exciting is the whole not knowing aspect.  I’m going with a very open ended vision and a rough plan to see a few highlights in each country but will be letting the excursion evolve as it develops.  Comment below with suggestions for any part of the journey and don’t forget to subscribe for updates as the adventure unfolds!

 

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Mike Still
Mike is a travel enthusiast, photographer and teacher. He loves adventure travel, meeting the locals and exploring new culture. As an outdoor enthusiast you can often find him hiking mountains or exploring forests trying to capture the beauty of mother nature. In 2013 he founded www.LiveTravelTeach.com as he left his home in America and has been teaching or traveling around the world ever since!

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37 comments

Peter J. Levy December 6, 2016 - 11:57 pm

I have friends in Berlin (roughly your age) who could help you get set up. Their English is superb, and their knowledge vast; everything from the education field, and real estate, to there best clubs, bars and restaurants.

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Mike Still December 8, 2016 - 8:53 am

Thanks Peter! I’ll definitely be in touch wherever I end up and Berlin is high on my list. But I just got word of an amazing school in Singapore that it would be hard to decline an offer at. So many choices!

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Amelie December 10, 2016 - 6:05 pm

I ended up in Berlin after 2 years in Asia. It sucked me in big time, been here 9 months now. Enjoy the ride!

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Mike Still December 10, 2016 - 6:53 pm

Berlin is high on my list. Right now I’m debating between Germany or Spain in Europe or maybe moving to Singapore even. So many choices!

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Mel and Marcus December 10, 2016 - 7:00 pm

That Rickshaw Run looks an amazing trip . Although I wouldn’t be too fussed about driving in India at night. Do they have some of the most dangerous roads in the world? Anyway, enough of my encouragement it does look a great adventure.

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Mike Still December 10, 2016 - 7:04 pm

Mel and Marcus,
Yeah they have some pretty dangerous roads. We’ve already discussed it and we are going to do everything possible not to drive at night!
Thanks for reading 🙂

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Vicki Louise December 10, 2016 - 9:23 pm

The Rickshaw Run looks like one amazing adventure – regardless of where you end up! I know someone that did it for charity dressed up as Where’s Wally and loved it!

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Nisha December 10, 2016 - 11:56 pm

The Rickshaw Run is indeed amazing. Being an Indian, I can imagine how difficult it would have been for you. The roads, the food, the network… the list goes on. But the people are amazing, warm and helpful. 🙂
All the best for your plans. I have volunteered in Cambodia and am thinking of a new country to do for a few months. Germany is a nice place to go.

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Viki December 11, 2016 - 3:19 am

Haha! This is awesome! I never heard of that race and now I want to participate too!

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Fiona Maclean December 11, 2016 - 5:20 am

LOL waiting now for an update! When exactly are you starting on your rickshaw run? Good luck to you!

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Nat Deduck December 11, 2016 - 5:46 am

This sounds like an epic adventure! I’m sure you’ll have an amazing time along the way!

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Carol Colborn December 11, 2016 - 10:28 am

I am excited for you. You will have the time of your life and be a better person for it!

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Katelyn Thomas December 11, 2016 - 12:39 pm

Sounds like you have an exciting adventure planned! Hope you have a ton of fun exploring new places on your way to Europe.

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Nathan December 11, 2016 - 1:13 pm

I’ve heard about this Rickshaw Run! It seems crazy. I can’t wait to follow along while you do it. It seems like such an adventure.

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Corinne December 11, 2016 - 4:50 pm

The Rickshaw Run. I’ve always wanted to do it. You are going to miss Asia, but love your backpacking trip. Enjoy!

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Christina December 11, 2016 - 9:14 pm

I’ve heard about the Rickshaw Run. It looks like a hoot! How many rickshaws will you need for your crew of 8? I’ll be following your adventures. Awesome!

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Everything Zany December 11, 2016 - 9:44 pm

Sounds like a plan, Mike! I absolutely agree that this is an epic farewell and exploring Asia. I love the idea of the Rickshaw run. I hope all goes well with your adventure. Keep us posted. 🙂

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Shannon - SoleSeeking December 12, 2016 - 12:38 am

I have a friend who did the Rickshaw Run and he absolutely loved it. Your plans sounds exciting. Good luck!

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Amy December 12, 2016 - 12:51 am

Ok, so the Rickshaw Run is seriously the best road trip idea ever. I love everything about it, from the journey to the charity aspect. I hope you have an epics (and safe) adventure! Being a road trip lover, but also being Canadian, my personal road worthiness would probably end in disaster on the roads of India, but I am excited to hear more about it as you go! Best of luck!!

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Edd Sanchez December 12, 2016 - 1:11 am

The rickshaw ride looks amazing, would love to do something like it one day, but does seem stressful!

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jessica December 12, 2016 - 6:38 pm

Looks like quite the adventure! Not sure if I would do it myself though. Taking one in Varanasi almost killed us. Avoid rush hour in Varanasi! Haha

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Travelling Tom December 12, 2016 - 10:58 pm

This sounds like a lot of fun, I’d love to some crazy adventure like this! I’d research the city you want to live in Spain beforehand. The climate is quite different depending on the place. I live in Barcelona right now and I’m not the biggest fan of it here!

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Anonymous December 13, 2016 - 2:45 am

The run seems so cool and exciting. 😀 😀

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Kristen Sarra December 13, 2016 - 3:36 am

That video is epic!! But there are adventures all over the world so sometimes goodbyes aren’t always as bad as they seem!

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Claire Summers December 13, 2016 - 8:49 am

Oh my! This looks incredible. Terifying! But incredible. What an epic adventure. Enjoy Europe.

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Vicky and Buddy December 13, 2016 - 10:20 am

Well I really hope you make it to Thailand and Cambodia because they’re both awesome countries. Great people, food, and of course so many interesting and historical sites. Can’t wait to read more about your adventures as they progress!

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Venkat Ganesh December 13, 2016 - 12:16 pm

As someone who’s roadtripped in India quite a bit, you’re in for one hell of ride. I truly beleive that roadtripping is the best way to travel India.

Good luck with the Rickshaw run! And gimme a shout if you need some advice on route planning!

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kathy (from walkaboutwanderer.com) December 13, 2016 - 12:49 pm

The rickshaw run looks great. It’s really inspiring me!
I love Myanmar, I loved the people and the culture. However I noticed a few comments about Berlin. A great city. Loved it!

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Sandy N Vyjay December 13, 2016 - 3:03 pm

Rickshaw run looks so much fun. Amazing ride indeed. And your plans to bid farewell to Asia are indeed exciting.

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Paula - Gone with the Wine December 15, 2016 - 3:00 pm

Wow, that sounds like a quite a trip! Good luck! I’m sure it will an experience of a life time. Sorry I am not able to help you with teaching jobs in European paradise locations, I can only help with cold and icy Scandinavia 😉

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Mike Still December 20, 2016 - 10:50 am

Scandinavia is still a beautiful destination! I just might get in touch. I’ve thought about how amazing all the winter landscapes are there, especially with the aurora!

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Sara - I do what I want to December 15, 2016 - 8:40 pm

I can only say have a great time in this adventure!! I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy every minute of it and good luck!

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Mike Still December 20, 2016 - 10:50 am

Thanks Sara!

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Agnes December 19, 2016 - 3:27 am

That rickshaw ride looks CRAZY… and super cool! You have some great plans ahead. Good luck with them. So after living three years in Asia, what would you say you will miss the most?

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Mike Still December 20, 2016 - 10:47 am

Its a toss up between missing some amazing food and how cheap everything is out here!

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Carmen Baguio December 20, 2016 - 3:23 am

Having an open-ended agenda should make life interesting. Definitely put that master’s degree to work. At least here in the states, I got a big bump in pay when I got my master’s.

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Mike Still December 20, 2016 - 10:00 am

Thanks Carmen! I’m pretty excited for both my travels and finding a new and improved job with my masters degree 🙂

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