While I am out, they are going to hire a new employee to take my place. This person will be hired as a temporary employee with the possibility of full-time hire. Basically, if the newly hired person turns out to be more amazing than me or is set in their role by the time I return, I will have to find a new job. However, there is the possibility that I will be able to return to my job, depending on the outcome.
The hubby and I have been analyzing a lot of things, reviewing our options, our budget, and different scenarios.
This is where we stand today:
- We will be gone for approximately four months
- Upside: This allows us enough wiggle room in our budget to keep our house without renting it out, preventing the headache and work of packing up all of our stuff, finding a renter, and paying all the fees of property management. If we can find someone we know who needs a place to stay for a few months, we would happily rent it out to them, but we don't want to have to worry about moving all of our stuff out.
- This also, in theory, might increase the chance of me returning to my job. The less time the new person has to get comfortable and get into the job, the better the chance that my employers will welcome me back.
- Downside: This will cause us to have to eliminate some of our destinations in order to get the free-flowing aspect out of our trip. Which leads me to the next point.
- We are going to focus our attention on some key destinations in South America, and spend the majority of our time exploring Southern and Eastern Europe.
- A key component of this trip is that we have the ability to "not plan" every day, every destination or every experience. We want to experience more of our world organically, allowing our whims and interactions with other people to guide us along our journey. By reducing our footprint a bit, we help to ensure that this will be possible.
- The first month or so, in South America, will be a little more planned down to the date and location, simply because of what we want to see and the amount of time we want to see it in. But once we arrive in (tentatively) Italy, things can start to flow naturally.
- We will leave in February.
- Due to some constraints of our destinations in South America, specifically Machu Picchu, we have pushed back our departure date by a couple weeks. We really want to hike the Inca trail, but January is, on average, a very rainy month and not the most pleasant time to do it. The trail is closed in February, but reopens in March. If we start elsewhere in South America and make our way to that area in the beginning of March, we are *hoping* it will work out that we can hike the trail (weather dependent). Plus, it's not high season, so we have a much better chance of getting into a hike with the "play it by ear" attitude that we are adopting if the weather isn't cooperating. (We will still visit Machu Picchu either way, but if it's gross weather we would just take the train...the easy way).