Here is some brief information about us in case you were curious. Our home town is Saint Hyacinthe in the province of Quebec, Canada, and we have been living there for 5 years now. It has about 50,000 inhabitants and is in the middle of prime agricultural land south of the St-Lawrence river. Although it is slowly becoming more multicultural, it is still quite homogeneous in terms of its population, hence our desire to travel with our children to hopefully make them more aware of different cultures, peoples, and ways of living.
Our trip begins on October 2nd, 2016, and spans a period of 10 months. All going well, we should be back home sometime in August 2017.
WHY A LIGHT YEAR?
A light year: a unit of distance (we will be covering a great distance!), but with a notion of time too (one year away from our usual routine, far from the creature comforts of home). And the concept of light (sunshine, and a break from the often brutal Quebec winter will be welcome too) can also be interpreted as lightness, that is to say without our usual high cost and high consumption lifestyle requirements, and also as a feeling of freedom that is easily lost amidst the oftentimes frenetic pace of our current North American environment.
Gary was born in South Africa, educated in England, and in his early twenties took a year off to work and travel around southeast Asia and Australia. He emigrated to Canada in 1999. Let’s say his taste for travel is innate! Scientifically trained, he now works for himself in finance. Proud Mamil, he hopes to accumulate a significant number of kilometers by bike at each stop during the trip. Being down-to-earth, he’s the one responsible for getting projects into workable states, while the rest of the clan is dreaming…
Greg will have celebrated his 10th birthday not long before our departure. Passionate about history, geography and Lego, he plans to spend his year learning as much as he can about each country we visit. The rest of the family intends to put his prodigious memory to good use to help remember details and plans during the trip (at age 3 he could already identify all the flags of the world!). Like his heroes Anakin Skywalker and Bilbo the Hobbit, Gregory is looking forward to heading off on his own adventure!
An animal and nature lover at heart, Nina has already planned to celebrate her 9th birthday with the elephants and lions in the African savanna. Multi-talented, she is as interested in reading, performing acrobatics, or playing with her collection of LPS (Littlest Pet Shop). Energetic and cheerful, she is perpetually in a good mood and ready to embark on any project, and often ends up doing it her way!
A native of St-Hyacinthe, Quebec, Sophie completed her medical studies in Sherbrooke and worked in Montreal before returning to her hometown a few years ago, where she works in a family medical practice. With a great sense of organization, she has been responsible for researching and planning the trip from the very beginning. She’s not afraid of multi-tasking and is looking forward to taking on the roles of teacher, travel agent, doctor and blogger, in addition to her usual role as mummy, and she may even find time to explore the world with the ones she loves!