<![CDATA[And Off We Went - Blog]]>Fri, 02 Jun 2017 19:00:06 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[the end of our road trip is in sight]]>Wed, 31 May 2017 22:40:43 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/the-end-of-our-road-trip-is-in-sightTomorrow we will drive from Jeffersonville, Ohio to Niagara Falls, NY - heading into Niagara Falls, ON the following day. That essentially means the end of our road trip.

We will have completed 10,300 miles or 16,500 kilometres - wow!

While a lot of things did not go according to plan, a lot of things did! We are truly grateful for the experience and for the support from everyone who cheered us every step of the way.
<![CDATA[broken down in paducah, kentucky]]>Sat, 06 May 2017 21:58:42 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/broken-down-in-paducah-kentuckyWe are stuck in Paducah, Kentucky - trying to source a steering box for our VW Kombi. If anyone can assist, it would be much appreciated.

On the plus side, Paducah is a lovely town - if you haven't had a chance to visit it, then you really should!
<![CDATA[our american road trip]]>Mon, 24 Apr 2017 15:15:47 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/our-american-road-tripWe really had no idea what our American road trip would look like. It surprised us in so many ways and we have found much joy in the simplicity of driving up Route 66.

In Texas we visited The Alamo, saw the remains of mammoths in Waco, visited the 6th floor of the Book Depository Store in Dallas, stopped by the Big Texan Steak Ranch and painted the vehicles at the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo (and the lesser known VW Slug Bug Ranch in Conway), and visited the infamous Conoco Tower featured in the Pixar movie in Shamrock.

We also veered off our route slightly to head into New Mexico. We heard stories of aliens in Roswell, did a ghost walk in Albuquerque, checked out the creative vibe in Santa Fe and captured many of the iconic spots on Route 66 in Tucumcari.

Next we head into Oklahoma with no idea what we will see or do at this stage. Our journey was never about seeing everything, or in some spots anything, but just to experience the world as it was.

I guess you could say that our road trip has been so far, so good! 
<![CDATA[from mexico to america]]>Fri, 24 Mar 2017 05:22:45 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/from-mexico-to-americaWe must admit we were a little nervous about the crossing into America - but we did it - safe and sound. Because our vehicle was not allowed initial entry into Mexico, our nerves were a little on edge. But in all honesty it was the easiest country crossing we had done to date. We were all happy to see the "Welcome to Texas" sign that greeted us when we entered. In actual fact, too easy! No one checked our vehicle papers or even bothered to check the status of our US insurance (we had none!)
​We stopped to gather our wits, visit the toilet (rejoiced that we could finally flush toilet paper in over 4 years) and picked up a few chocolate bars. Then we continued on our way to Laredo.

It took us a couple of days to finally secure some insurance for our vehicle, but we eventually managed to get some through a local insurance company in Laredo. It was a little more than we wanted to pay, ($169 for the first month) but many companies turned us away leaving us no choice. The best way, we were told, was to sign up as unlicensed drivers because we did not fit all the boxes. We were happy enough with that as it meant we could continue on our way to San Antonio to visit The Alamo. Next stop Austin and then Dallas.

So far everyone is liking America a lot!
<![CDATA[monarch Butterflies]]>Sat, 04 Mar 2017 17:29:42 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/monarch-butterfliesWe had a great day at the butterfly reserve in Mexico - what an experience.

We opted to ride horses up to the top due to the steep climb but enjoyed a leisurely walk down. Our guide was very friendly and we saw hundreds if not thousands of beautiful Monarch Butterflies.

Definitely one of our best moments in Mexico.
<![CDATA[mexico city in a day - it is possible]]>Sat, 04 Mar 2017 02:13:39 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/mexico-city-in-a-day-it-is-possibleWe planned one day in Mexico City due to limited time and managed to achieve what we set out to do. 

We started with an early morning bus trip from Puebla.
We headed straight to Frida Kahlo's house aka The Blue House.
Then we went around the corner to Leon Trotsky's house.
We went to the centre of town and had a bite of lunch in a little sidewalk cafe.
We then took to the skies to get a bird's eye view of the city.
We did a spot of shopping at the anime centre.
And then we boarded the bus back to Puebla.
6 and a half hours in the city - not bad at all!
<![CDATA[we broke down near some amazing ruins]]>Fri, 10 Feb 2017 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/we-broke-down-near-some-amazing-ruinsWell even when things go wrong, they go right. Our van was playing up so we decided to stop at Tula. Who knew they had such amazing ruins there! Super happy with our impromptu stop.
<![CDATA[we literally have the worst vehicle in the world]]>Wed, 18 Jan 2017 21:45:40 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/we-literally-have-the-worst-vehicle-in-the-world
In a story that is just too unbelievable to be true, we broke down on the way home from the mechanics. For real! But we are hardly surprised. Either we have a van that just cannot be repaired or there are literally no qualified mechanics in the whole of South America all the way down to Mexico. You choose!
<![CDATA[mexico: from merida to puebla: and off we went]]>Sun, 08 Jan 2017 06:31:57 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/mexico-from-merida-to-puebla-and-off-we-wentDay 1: Merida to Puebla (Merida to Campeche)
We made good time from Merida to Campeche, despite the rainy weather, and experienced no car issues whatsoever. A lovely relief as every trip up until now has been plagued with disaster after disaster. We checked into our hostel, toured the town, had lunch and enjoyed some down time. In the evening we took a night tram tour before having a late dinner.
Day 2: Merida to Puebla (Campeche)
Today we spent a fun day exploring the city. We visited the local market and toured part of the wall learning more about the pirate rich history of this fascinating city. We had an enjoyable lunch outdoors and wandered to the square in the evening to view the light and sound show.
Day 3: Merida to Puebla (Campeche to Escarcega)
We enjoyed the waterside scenery and after hitting Champoton, headed inland to Escarcega. So great to be able to see the diversity of the Mexican countryside after staying so long in the Yucatan. Can't wait to see more of it.
Day 4: Merida to Puebla (Escarcega to Palenque)
From Campeche to Tabasco to Chiapas - today we drove cross country from Escarcega to Palenque. We enjoyed dinner al fresco in a small cafe style restaurant. Looking forward to bed tonight in lieu of our BIG day tomorrow.
Day 5: Merida to Puebla (Palenque)
Today we explored the Palenque ruins and the eco parque to feed the manatees - what a busy day!
Day 6: Merida to Puebla (Palenque to San Cristobal de las Casas)
We experienced some mechanical difficulties today but eventually arrived in San Cristobal in the late evening. Poor Matthew felt a little car sick today on the windy roads.
Day 7: Merida to Puebla (San Cristobal de las Casas)
We decided we would stay in San Cristobal de las Casas to rest the vehicle and give us a chance to explore the city.
Day 8: Merida to Puebla (San Cristobal de las Casas to San Pedro Tapanatepec)
Not a good sign when the van won't start in the morning. However 3 hours and $20 later, we were on the road again. We crossed into Oaxaca and stopped at San Pedro Tapanatepec for the evening. 
Day 9: Merida to Puebla (San Pedro Tapanatepec to Santa Domingo Tehuantepec)
We drove through an extremely windy patch of land in Oaxaca state today - perfect weather conditions for the 1500+ wind turbines located there.
Day 10: Merida to Puebla (Santa Domingo Tehuantepec to Oaxaca)
Despite the vehicle troubles and the fact it took 12 hours to travel approximately 240kms, I was reminded today why we do what we do. We were faced again with the kindness of strangers - kindness that comes simply from someone wanting to do something to help someone else. Matt even had a ride in a digger to the next town in search of a mechanic. Thank you ​Heleodora for escorting us all the way to Oaxaca.
Day 11: Merida to Puebla (Oaxaca)
Matt went in search of a fuel pump for the van and we took a wander downtown to explore Oaxaca.
Day 12: Merida to Puebla (Oaxaca to Tehuacan)
While the van was still showing signs of trouble, we made it to Tehuacan without issue. As we made it to good timing, we had a chance to pick up some necessities at the nearby mall and even grab a movie.
Day 13: Merida to Puebla (Tehuacan to Puebla)
We arrived at our destination city safe and sound - the toll roads meant our journey was relatively smooth. We checked into a hotel and have booked ourselves into an apartment for the next few weeks starting tomorrow. Thanks for following along on our journey.
<![CDATA[a quiet christmas in merida]]>Wed, 28 Dec 2016 17:06:05 GMThttp://www.andoffwewent.com/blog/a-quiet-christmas-in-meridaWe spent a lovely quiet Christmas in Merida, Mexico. We visited a fair two nights before Christmas, returning Christmas Eve only to find it was rained out.

​Christmas morning was purely a family affair. Santa had come early in the form of a new laptop and camera so we could continue to document our travels and work as we go. Matthew was up way too early. Emilia would have slept all day if we let her.

We went to the Hyatt to enjoy a relaxing Christmas lunch. No dishes, no cleaning - the best way to enjoy Christmas in my opinion.

From our family to yours - we would like to wish you a happy new year with plenty of travel and adventure in 2017.