Well Hello and Welcome

This will be the running Blog of Jill and Richard Pieper’s adventures who have decided to become international nomads, swanning the globe and experiencing life to its fullest. The purpose of the Blog will primarily be as a tool to update our friends and family on our adventures, acting as a form of diary, but as we get into the planning of this we are including bits that others may find entertaining. Before we get too far into this there are a couple of clarifications and disclaimers that must be made up front:

1 The name and hosting of this blog is entirely Jill’s doing with absolutely no input from me (We are now apparently referred to as Midlifers hence Midlifer Adventure).

2 The concept of outlining the preparation aspects of the trip is also her idea.

So how did we get to where we are today…?


Richard – After a 20+ year law enforcement career I was offered and took a voluntary Redundancy in 2011 and rolled straight into another job (with a brief pause necessitated by having a heart attack at 42). After 12 months my contract finished and I was without work. A tight fiscal climate driven by a government hell-bent on delivering a surplus in a shrinking economy meant that jobs in a public service town had dried up and I found myself one of the great unwashed without work and a kept man.

Jill – My darling bride has been a haematology and oncology nurse for the lion’s share of her career (with some fascinating sidelines along the way). In 2011 she made a shift in her career path from clinical delivery to the holding of the folders (the most frowned upon move in nursing circles). After reveling in the new challenges her goalposts moved when internal politics and a boy’s club attitude made her life less than pleasant.

One sunny evening after yet another 14 hour day of being under siege my darling wife came home and relayed the latest installment of mistreatment and abuse at the hands of her employers (a common occurrence of late). This episode included the latest decision of management that seemed to bypass the underlying issues and reward the principal culprits of the ever changing but constant issues of her workplace.

So…an unemployed and disenfranchised husband…a besieged and bewildered bride…

What was to be done?

Princess (as she regularly does) came up with a brilliant brainwave whereby we sell our (largish) house in the second most expensive city in the country and buy a smaller place in a less expensive location that also has a warmer climate….Inspired by the recent international relocation (to Canada) of her only baby boy, Princess suggested the global explorers concept.

Let’s have our mid-life crisis together…

Who can argue with such sound logic…?

So our journey begins. But before any travelling can occur there are those pesky things that needed to be thought about.

  • Where are we going to go?
  • What are we going to do?
  • How are we going to fund it?
  • How long are we going for?
  • How do we make things work?

At this point I made my first (and possibly last) substantive input to this process. Having acclimatised to a cooler climate I now struggle in the heat and humidity so my suggestion was that between 20 and 25 degrees Celsius was a nice temperature, why don’t we stay in that temp range and as a place gets hotter or colder then we should leave. This has the brilliant (if I do say so myself) impact of only needing one style of clothing making the packing and toting that much easier.

An evening of internet research identified that Scandinavia has about a six week window where the weather would be classified as reasonable from an Australian viewpoint. This window is in late July and August and involves semi-warm days and reasonable amounts of daylight. We had our notional starting point. Having found some broad answers to the above questions we were faced with the logistics of making such a plan work. Minor things really.

  • We need to sell our house
  • We need to buy a new place in a new city
  • We need to sell our cars
  • We need to sell all of our possessions (as our furniture would not suit a downsizing and storage fees seemed unreasonable).

So this is where we found ourselves…

We are chatting about what to do and how to do it and the plan is ever evolving. Obviously a travel diary with photos of the various adventures will be required. This will combine with a critique of the relative pros and cons of individual locations. Being food obsessed there will no doubt be a focus on cuisine and inspired by Brad’s book “1001 beers you must try before you die” this will also play a role. As at today (Saturday 20 April 2013) we are expecting to deliver the following items in our ongoing Blog and relevant pages.

  • A travel diary and associated images
    • (a means of staying in touch with family and friends)
  • Highlights and Lowlights
    • (suggestions for anyone who may wish to travel in the future)
  • Table of world beers (tried and critiqued by me) organised by country of origin with some cunning form of beer rating assigned to each.
    • (really just a way of me showing off to the boys)
  • Tips for travelers
    • (lessons learned along the way and tips for others to avoid our inevitable mistakes)
  • What worked and what did not

Hopefully we can make this entertaining and that you will enjoy our travel guide.



13 thoughts on “Introduction

  1. KAT

    I’ll be interested to know if you find a truly bad beer. I’ve had two in my life, one was an English ale that was well and truly off, and the other was that gawdawfull stuff with a fish on the lable that we had on the Debacle bus.

  2. Karin

    Bon voyage! I look forward to reading of your midlifer adventures though I still struggle with the image of Richard backpacking!

  3. Jeremy

    Go Jimmy Jungle Bunny and his Missus, look forward to hearing of all your adventures ! Have a great time.

  4. JoAnn Owen

    Great start. I stood on the Great Wall in 1986,
    visited the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace and zoo. Your
    ramblings brought back some very thrilling memories from that

    As a 3rd grader in a 3 room school I saw a picture of the Great Wall never dreaming I
    would ever be there.

    I shared your blog with my sister who will be following you too.

    By the way, it’s nice to put a face on my most challenging opponent
    in Words.

  5. Mike and Patricia

    Happy Christmas and a great New Year,

  6. N Kurlawalla

    Enjoyed reading this, and meeting you both at Graceful in Trivandrum. We are in Kochi, went to Dal Roti, it was good, BUT as connoisseurs of real Indian food it was not genuine. Very expensive. We have found a great place in Ernakulum for the REAL South Indian Thali and plenty more. called Saravana Bhavan on Bannerjee Road near Saritha Theatre Tel 2370153, 4026570. All you can eat with refills and so on. A/C room at same price so can eat in comfort.

  7. Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this article
    plus the rest of the website is also really good.

  8. Good article. I definitely love this site. Keep it

  9. Mike and Patricia

    Hi guys, we are following your adventures and wishing you well. What is the story with the three guys in red….Photoshop?

    • No photoshop…they had the masks made up and wore them all three days…all day…they had a different shirt for each day…with a similarly witty comment

  10. Great blog! Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?

    I’m hoping to start my own blog soon but I’m a little lost on everything.
    Would you suggest starting with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid
    option? There are so many options out there that I’m totally overwhelmed ..
    Any tips? Thanks!

    • I went for the paid version as I was 100% new to this. It has proven to be fairly easy to use and user friendly. The expense is a bit high but the ease of access was worth it for the beginner that I was.

  11. Patricia Evans

    my friend Lawrie Sutherland in Brisbane is friendly with your Mum. i am looking forward to reading your Burma visit. i have just spent a month there.

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