If you’re an American student, you probably had to read John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men. If you’re a literature nerd, you’ve probably read it for fun. Either way, I’m certain you’ve heard this quote before.
The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.
My high school Honours English teacher loved that phrase. So much so that 10 years later it still resonates with me. However, it doesn’t quite hold the ominous power over my head like it used to. You see, in high school one of my best friends and I had a deep desire to travel the world. She was from the Czech Republic and wanted to explore countries that were off the beaten tourist path. I was from California, and although I had only explored a few neighboring states, my love of languages had me yearning to experience foreign cultures.
So we made a plan. Our whirlwind adventure would start in the Czech Republic and make a loop through Poland, Russia, Finland, Sweden, and Norway. We would then head down to Germany, France, Portugal, and Spain, from where we would jet off to explore Asia and Australia. I think we dubbed it Our Epic World Trip.
And indeed, it would be epic. However I was 12, she was 13, and it was going to be a long, long time until we both had the funds to undertake such an adventure. Perhaps even our best laid plans were bound to go awry. Yet we waited, we dreamed, we grew up, moved to different parts of the country, and eventually different parts of the world. But just like any friendship worth keeping, we stayed in touch.
And then the stars aligned.
It all started with a whimsical idea and an impromptu text. I was living in Scotland and my spring break was coming up. She was living in the Czech Republic working as a part time researcher. In the true fashion of a 21st century young adult, I thought YOLO and pressed send.
“If you’re not too busy, could I come visit you for spring break?”
Somehow, she was able to get two weeks off of work, I was able to find inexpensive flights to Prague, and together we began planning a highly abridged yet equally awesome version of the adventure we envisioned over 10 years ago. We titled it Our Epic World Trip: Part 1, because this is only the beginning… and because money doesn’t grow on trees.
So, over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing the adventures we had on our unexpected journey. I’m excited to sort through my photos and relive the memories I made in the Czech Republic, Spain, and Slovakia. However, slightly more importantly, I’m excited to plan our next trip.
Who knows where fate will take us next?
Until next time,