I am currently on the road, hitchhiking around the world shooting a documentary, or twelve. I am hoping to inspire those around me through unorthodox, and sometimes extreme methods of living. I have decided that in order to accurately measure and also to enable the best possible footage I will not spend a single dollar on food, shelter, transportation or anything personal for the next full year, and only sustain on what has been generously and spontaneously provided for me.
After witnessing enough negative behaviour in complete strangers to complete strangers to last a lifetime, I have decided to set out to accomplish many things. Prove the world is not such a nasty place full of untrustworthy people, open the minds of society that anything is possible, and that a new friend or opportunity is just a conversation away. When common courtesy seems to have evaded us in 2010, I am setting out in search of the good in the human race. Where have all the good people gone?
I will use my social skills, resourceful thinking and life experiences to accomplish a highly controversial move; travel the globe on less than $500 and breakdown every sterotype and false perception. Its going to be tough sometimes, but I know that what is waiting for me will rock the socks off of everyone reading this. Just wait 'til you see the videos.....

Monday, January 25, 2010

On The Road....

Well Ive finally left the six one tray. (613 for the non-gangsters). The first step in this very long journey. It was a sunny Sunday morning. I had a good sleep and I awoke buzzing with excitement. I threw on a few pump-up jams to get the blood flowing, although it was already coursing. Where the streets have no name by U2 allowed my mind to race, and I envisioned all the things I would be doing, or hoping to do. After finishing my final packing, last shower, peanut buttered toast and writing my goodbyes, I set out, leaving the knee-deep snowbanks, frigid people(not from the cold) and mundane Ottawa scenery. It felt right. I had a few final errands; I stopped by the construction job I had and quit to fund this big ol' trip, collected my pay and say 'smell ya later'. It was a good gig, the guys were cool and the bosses cooler. (We were rennovating the Elephant and Castle in the Rideau Centre.) I got to work with a good buddy of mine, and it paid well enough to get my last things, plus the first bit of my half-decade of travels. The camera shop I wanted to grab the lens I had on hold was closed, so I took that time to wander Bank St one last time, absorbing all that I could, as I knew when(if) Id see it again, it wouldn't look the same. I had a Nalgene bottle in a pocket on my pack filled with my hygiene kit. It must have popped out along the way, because I noticed it wasn't with me waiting for the bus. I was more bummed than Tiger Woods' wife upon discovering this... Not a publicly failed marriage, but still a big bummer.
I experienced an emotional rollercoaster on the way out. It was ups and downs, highs and lows. I couldn't be more excited at the thought that I was finally doing this; an immersed world tour, travelling the globe on a shoestring with a camera. Everyones dream, right? The documentaries planned are going to rock the world to it's core, and it also gave me chills. I would get jolts of excitement thinking of all the people I will meet along the way, things Ill do and see. But on the flipside, I was leaving my best mates, the closest thing I have to family aside from my sister. They have been there for me thick and thin, and supported me and my crazy ways. I always knew before this trip in the back of mind, that it could very well be the last time I ever see them, as the nature of this expedition will throw me into uncontrollable situations, and that thought alone provoked emotions of 'miss' and 'homesickness'. I don't normally get all mushy gushy,(at least Id like to think so) but Id be lying to say I didn't have a feeling in my stomach and heart that fought the good vibes. To be blunt, I was going to miss the boys and of course Major Dazer. To me, home is where you make it, and they were home for me. I actually had to keep the 'peace out letters' short, for fearing of a watery substance from my eye corners.
I rode the 97 Bayshore out of the city, and I stared back at the skyline while the warm sun heated my face. It was bittersweet. The last time I would see Ottawa, (my home for the last 4 years), for a very long time, but it did feel right. When I could no longer see the government offices jutting the sky, I turned and opened my book Ross Kemp on Gangs, and let my music overcome my thoughts.
When the bus pulled into the last stop, I grabbed my heavy pack and started hiking to the highway. Then a wave of completely different emotion rushed through my veins as what I was doing finally hit me.
It was chilly, but I was breaking sweat. Thoughts of intimidation, nervousness and fear mixed but I was ready for it, and I walked down the 416 shoulder, to pick my initial hitching post with a jubilant gait, if I may say so myself.. I found a lovely bit of indistinguishably indifferent pavement, and heaved my pack down. I pulled out a camera, snapped a quick shot of my shit-eating grin, and stuck out the thumb.
The emotion I was feeling was indescribable. Euphoric would be the closest. Here I was, finally starting my much talked about trip(not really though, as I was heading to Toronto for 2 days to visit my AK) nonetheless, it was starting.
The people passing me matched the Ottawa demographic to a T. Some curious, some offended. Some shocked, some intrigued. Noone cared, noone stopped. I was dancing, singing at the top of my lungs, waving and acting like a kid on Christmas. I chose not to have a sign, as it was only to Toronto, and I had all day to hitch.
It also proved I didn't need one, as not 20 minutes passed until a white Ford Explorer pulled over, reversing to my spot.
"Hi, thanks for stopping, where you heading?"
Perfect, 20 minutes waiting, and Ill get there in one shot, before dinner time.
I climbed into his warm SUV, introduced myself, and told him he was the first on my trip. I summed my trip into a nutshell, and it raised his brow. He then told me he was a film producer/director, and owner of a youth-targeted television channel. (!!!!)-I don't make this stuff up, I swear!- We talked nonstop for the entire trip, and long story short, hes going to help me out along this trip!
Everything DOES happen for a reason. There could not have been a better candidate to pick me up unless it was the inventor of teleporting.
I'm not going to go into detail of the trip, as I am meeting with him this week to discuss potential opportunities. I will let you know how it goes.
Anyways, there's the brief update; I'm downtown Toronto for at least 2 days, where Ill be fine tuning my boat travels and media sponsors. Oh and getting rest and AK inspired shoulder rubs, as my pack is well over 70kg. Ill be shedding weight shortly I'm sure....
I have a few things to post, they'll go up tonight.
Ill also sum up the plans, as they might not still be crystal to you guys yet.

Peace out girl scouts.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

A little taste of that good ol' American Spirit.

So today I did my errand of running to the American embassy. Well, that in itself was an adventure. I was greeted immediately by a security guard who seemed very curious and apprehensive of my being there. I was dressed to the 9s; schmancy tie, V-neck, loafers and dockers. I had even shaved!(it had been easily a month). He immediately asked to see my passport-which was obviously normal protocol. I wasn't however expecting the second security guard and marine to approach me, once they overheard I was Canadian with questions.
I simply asked to speak to an representative for a few basic travel questions regarding my hitch. What they must have heard was "I am a threat to National Security. Don't be fooled by the somewhat polished image, I am here to blow this crappy building and all its Yankee inhabitants". Must have been the accent. Well once we sorted I was a harmless young chap full of ambition, and not some nomadic escapee eyeing the US as my next victim, I got my questions answered. I'm good to go, even via hitching. They told me the common knowledge crap I already knew, and said they don't recommend hitching. I almost torted I don't recommend being American, but I didn't want to end up in Guantanamo. They actually assume the worst in everyone. I know its the embassy, and I know history has proven a few problems, but come on. Sheesh, I could have sworn I had enough cover-up on my face gang tattoos. Anyways, it wasn't really a problem, I guess I had just forgotten how Americans are, and that there are no exceptions. Like I said, the embassy probably isn't a good example to base views from, but I know its foreshadowing to the demographic I will be dealing with. The most overweight, close-minded, fearful, consuming humans on the planet.
Lets just hope they invite me home for dinner...
this has been in my head for the past few days, thought id pass it on...

Sloan -Other Man

In case your curious as to my music tastes, I have two genres; loud and quiet. Tonight is quiet mood.
This is why hes the captain of the worlds greatest foorball club. Gary Neville is a legend, Carlos Tevez is a wank. RED OR DEAD.
-The photo is of Manchester United giving ex-United player Tevez the finger from the sidelines after he scored and celebrated in the 2-1 City win. ......Second leg is a comin'.
As of now, Ive found about a handful of individuals who have quit their jobs overnight to embark on a round the world journey. Its SO great to see.
A majority of people I talk with about my ambitions say similar comments like "I'm jealous" or "I wish I could do that". They all fail to realize that they can. People are capable of anything they want, especially these days. Anything we want to do, or have in life, can be ours. We're just constantly distracted by false perceptions, societal influences and layers of constrictions to make sure we don't ever do anything we don't want to do. The American Dream; mediocracy! Awesome!....Its one of the things I'm addressing with this trip. Now I'm not saying you should quit the well paying job, forfeit the house and skip town with a hobo bag to chase your youthful dreams, but if you enjoy something; do it. Skiing? Cool, find time after work. Remote controlled robots? Awesome, build that sheeeet in the garage. Fly fishing or framing, knitting or kiteboarding , skydiving or scrapbooking, photography or painting-by-numbers, its all kosher. What ever your heart desires, go for it. "But its expensive". "I'm tired after work". "Its been a while, I don't have the right stuff to get back into it". There are always a million reasons not to do something. Find your reason to do it.
Unless you want to own a vacation home in North Korea, or run for Prime Minister after a meth-lab bust, they opportunities are there.

Heres one example, a Japanese dude who was tired of the mundane life, and decided to spice it up a tick by biking around the planet. WITH ONLY $2 !!Yeeeeaaaah boyeeee.


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Cant sleep for the life of me. So, I blog.

I haven't posted much in the past couple days, as Ive been busy at work, getting the last possible funds which means long days and early mornings. Ive also been fine tuning details.
I'm also at a very crucial crossroads....I'm continuously fighting an internal battle concerning my preparations for this trip...I'm at the point, like most anxious travellers to just go. I don't have a flight booked, I don't have a planned itinerary, I could technically leave after this post. The only thing preventing me is money(isn't that always the case?) I'm working my little buns off(by the way its been renovating a busy pub in the Rideau Centre...it pays well, cash and under the table, just what I needed) and am almost ready to go. I just made a big purchase, on a new camera body, but I needed it. Now I just need a bunch of DV tapes, a small, but big portable hard rive and a card reader, to make my life easier.
I was planning to save at least 1500(still peanuts), but that idea is gone, as it would take me at least 10 more days, starting at zero. Instead of allowing myself the financial stability of a safety net(emergency funds, borders, bribes, flights, food etc) I'm going to donate my earnings to the Red Cross, Haiti relief fund. As much as I need the money to survive, they need it 100x more. How can I shoot a documentary on the good of humanity, without considering this? It will be the catalyst to start my trip.
After my US border concerns, I did my homework, and think I should be fine. I will be hiding my credentials and anything declaring my media positions, as I do not at all want to buy a visa. Other than that, I have nothing to hide, the proper papers and ID, and I think my story will suffice. I thought about conjuring up a story that I'm visiting someone, or going to a concert or something, but those Nazi border patrol cops record everything, make you wait 20 mins, and come back to use it against you in your own lies. I'm going to tell them my plans, if they say no dice, Ill hitch to the next crossing. I'm preparing to deal with some of the worst people under the sun...I think I can handle the second worst; American Authority.....
anyways, off to work, more to come tonight. It's crunch time!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Well Im going to bed, 12hr work day starting at 7......but its going to get me on the road sooner....


Ok Ive got my schtuff together....I think I'm going to be alright...

in the mean time....

macchu picchu face

stunning shots of edinburgh

You too TSA.

Procrastination Material

As much as Id like to think people turn to my blog in times of procrastination and desire to be entertained, I know this is not the case. Yet. But I will still do you all a favour, and pop up some links I think you should give a read to...

Row for Water- Jessica Spotz, the 22yr old American rowing from Africa to South America. She is just over 2 weeks into the journey, and shes raising money like its nothing! She keeps her blog updated, and its pretty cool. Actually, I think its top drawer.

Europe's Top 25 Castles.


99 Things you should have seen on YouTube.

They arent too interesting. And I just noticed how many bookmarks I have. Wayyy too many to put up....I apparently need more friends or something....

Oh and one more thing....F*CK CARLOS TEVEZ. that wank traitor can get stuffed over at Man City. RED OR DEAD.

If a friend told you to jump off the balcony, would you do it?

I guess blame peer pressure...

Getting ready to jump the 20+ stairs at my buddies' house. Id always wanted to do it, its deceivingly high, and the snowbanks were soft, and perfectly aligned. A little too soft, as I went through one of them and got really bad whiplash, as my head snapped forward on my last jump, off the railing(the photos were on another camera, they'll be posted shortly)
Dangerous? Yes. Painful? Quite. Stupid? Very. Worth it? Mes oui!!

"Hey Nathan, you're SO extreme man, whoooa jumping off stairs into snow, like totally life on the edge".
I know, I know, thanks, I thought you might say that.
Well I have a few photos that show just how high it is, and how it would make you think twice, or thrice. And I was really bored, and wanted to get the blood flowing...

My day off; wasted.

So I woke at my normal time of 620am, and like usual, I did not feel like moving let alone working. I then decided I was going to call in, as at the time sleep was more important than making money. I had to be productive today, as my time is limited, and working hours are precious, no matter how bad the pillowface is. Right after breakfast, I went to the Ottawa Citizen to meet with the travel editor, and discuss the possibility of a features column to cover my progress, and provide me with a good bit of public awareness. Sadly, I was told they did not have a budget that could accommodate such plans, so I'm looking at the alternative of an online blog with them. Id be lying to say it wasn't frustrating; it definitely was, as I was hoping they would give me the green light. Salt was aggressively rubbed in the wound, when on the way home, I grabbed a complimentary paper, only to open the travel section and see their feature article about vacationing in Winnipeg. I'm telling them I'm hitching around the world, shooting a video and willing to write for free, and they need to pay their writers to print holidays in Manitoba, and the 8,627,784th article about a Dominican resort. Fuel to the fire, cheers. I then went to the A-channel news headquarters and tried to speak with the head of HR and Marketing. He was in a meeting, so I'm speaking with him tomorrow.
On the way home, I stopped at the Red Cross, which was long overdue. After everything Ive been talking about, my time would still be infinitely put to better use in Haiti, than any personal trip. I spoke with the head of HR who is referring my resume to their project coordinator. It would be a left-turn from my invested plans, but I wouldn’t think twice.
I then ran into two veteran photographers who were evidently long time professionals, and extremely experienced in the industry. I spoke to them about my plans, and the minute they found out I was planning to hitch across the US border, the mood almost turned sour. They more or less said ‘good luck kid’ as the TSA and Border Police are so strict now, Ill have to totally change my game plan at the crossing. Thank you Mr Shoebomber, the Nigerian Xmas Plotter, I'm forever in debt to our homies the al-Qaeda, as they have made Americans and travelling in America so tolerant. (smell the sarcasm) It will be a bit difficult, but Im going to go to the Embassy tomorrow, and I'll sort out the deal-eo. Its just going to make it an adventure from Day1. (I plan to cross that border the first day.)
For the most part, it wasn’t a very productive day, as I ended up coming home only to write my eyes dry on proposals and business plans. Well, maybe , I guess maybe it kinda was. I'm still not close to where I want to be, but I'm going to keep plugging for the next few hours. The Internet is down, so I cant find anything cool to post in the meantime…

Monday, January 18, 2010

And I bet he'll still make a million bucks.

Really? Is this necessary?
I dont even know where to begin on this....

World Cup Stab-Proof Vests.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Still seems like common knowledge to me, but it is worth reading...

6 ways to get your way when travelling. (dont mind the video)

And you think your life is tough....

Interesting find; the written journals of Aid Workers in Haiti.

BBC Link Here.

Its people like these that keep the world turning.

Anderson Cooper; He's lucky hes family, or he'd be out a job.

Seriously. Not only is this guy totally a figure of bias for the USA from CNN(in case you didn't know, he has family relations that create bias and controversial propaganda claims) [proof] but he's got to be one of the dumbest spoon-fed people on the planet, certianly the media. And CNN is just the most biased, terrible media corporation on the friggen planet. I chose my words very carefully, as it would be full of expletives.
And guess what? He has a blog!! I just stumbled across an entry of his, entitled "28 things I wish I knew before I started travelling".
Ill warn you, its one of the dumbest things Ive read.(travellers point of view) It blows like a gale force wind in a tunnel the size of Gary Coleman.

Examples; #3 Take lots of cash with you. Yes, empty your CNN payroll and stuff it into the money belt you think those kids don't know about, know about. Dumbass. If anything, say take lots of small bills, to pay off instead of rollin' with the 20s like you're Tony Montana. Dumbass.
Everything he said about taxis was dumber than the first. The police couldn't give a flying fart if your cabbie dropped you off in the 'hot' district with a cheeky grin.
#18. The concept of personal space means very different things in different countries. You kind of have to get used to that. -Yeah Anderson, I guess we kind of have to get used to people being different in different places. (how is he on TV??)
Next he tells us we should be somewhat tolerant of smoking. Well you unbelievable incompetent, you have to be tolerant of everything you normally despise when you immerse yourself into a foreign place. ....So is NBC hiring?
He also continues to so kindly provide us with the most obvious and useless of tips. Did their travel editor read that crap? The thought of that clean shaven, comb-overed GQ look alike in a war zone reporting how 'hostile the situation is' makes me laugh more than the "leave Britney alone guy".
Basically Mr Cooper, don't be American anywhere but America. Shitty buzz for the 200 million who have this sad reality. Except Paris Hilton, she represents all that the world should aspire to be. She's like, such an inspiration, for like, us all.

Ze Plan.

It looks like everything is almost set. I have all the equipment I need(although the thousands of dollars worth of gear will be stolen the moment I step foot into Mexico), and the right tools and resources I feel necessary to ensure my success.
Basically, I think Ive stumbled on enough websites, read enough books, and scoured enough messaging boards now to make sure I don't get chopped up so my loverly kidneys can be sold on the Black Market, or initiated for life into a Guatemalan gang. Ive been reading extensively on hitching, international travel, dangers, kidnappings, routes, street gangs, corrupt police and governments, diseases, do's and don'ts, wildlife, survival techniques, languages, foreign policies etc. Ive been compiling a book together of important resources; think of it as the 'shit hits the fan go-to book'.
Its starting to gather as this; I'm departing from Ottawa, hitching north in Quebec to see a cousin for a few days. I then hitch to Toronto, where I will spend my last two days in Canada for a very long time, with a close friend. I then leave Toronto and Canada, and will chose my USA entry crossing closer to the day. There are several into New York State. Hitching the US should be fun. I will proceed south to NYC, spend a day, then continue to Boston, Philadelphia and further south down the East Coast. I will continue through Myrtle Beach, and eventually into Florida. Its here I will decide if I'm hitching Southwest to rural Mexico. I'm not still 100% on Mexico, as its quite unpredictable. I do have several contacts in the country, and in Mexico City, but if I can avoid early conflict, I will. That being said, I'm almost definitely going to find myself there, so like I mentioned; no plans. If I go from Miami, where I will spend a few days, I will hitch my boat to the Caribbean. I can easily find my way out this way. If not, I can get a boat from Cozumel, Mexico, or continue south through Central America. I have not been, and need to experience this amazing group of countries. I can easily find boats from Panama City, and the canal.(only legal issues a concern here). The original plan was to push south through to the Tiera del Fuego, Chile and Argentina. As much as I want to experience South America on the beginning of the journey, if I plan to attend the World Cup in South Africa, June and July, I will have to potentially cut out this leg. Instead, it will most likely be a boat transfer trip through the Caribbean, and will contain Blue Water sailing here, my first experience. I will then hopefully get my boat to Thailand, or another South Pacific Asian country, as if I go to Australia, they have some strict rules for 'boat people'. These boats I'm referring to are private yachts and sailboats, but I also have the possibility of obtaining work on a cargo ship. Still weighing the options, most likely to be a game-time decision. From Asia, its straight hitchhiking to Africa, although if time becomes an issue, I will cheat and grab a boat from India or something to South Africa.

So....what do you think??


I know you've all seen the horrific images plastered on the front pages and all over the Internet. Its things like this that question my faith in God, and other religious beliefs. How do these things happen to these people?

So we all know that a 7.0 earthquake has devastated the Caribbean Island of Haiti, killing tens of thousands.
What you may not know;

Basically two years ago the United Nations(UN) declared Haiti a lost cause, for the most part, and pulled out a majority of their funding, and relief. Haiti has no real economy, infrastructure, no natural resources to offer, no nothing. They cannot build on what little they have. Not to mention, most foreign aid also was revoked, and left Haiti in a more desperate state. Oh, I have yet to mention they have had like over a dozen natural disasters since 2000, this being the worst.
I saw a report on the International aid funding coming in, and the US had matched the World Bank's donation of $100million. Canada donated $5million plus troops and supplies. Not bad, but I'm sure Starbucks still cleared their $70 million on the day.
It really has me wondering so many things. How is it that such a poor nation can endure so much? Why do bad things happen to good people? If there is a 'higher power', why does it allow these things to happen? A train of questions that will never be answered. And what do you think the victims are wondering?

Please keep the country of Haiti, and its persevering people in your thoughts and prayers

A little inspiration, or something to that effect.

This is one of my favourite posters. A WWII ad from the British Government. It was to inspire soldiers and kin alike during tough times...

Some of my Reads....

In an attempt to edgeukate myself, and prepare for this trip I have been reading like an old wizard.
Some of the titles I recently picked up;

Shake hands with the devil-Romeo Dallaire. I got this when I found out I was heading to Rwanda. I knew the story, and hes actually a friend of my fathers, and I met him back in the day, but the book is something else. A first hand account of the Genocide that took place in Rwanda in 1994. The man has more or less lost his right mind, as what he endured was so horrific.

Worlds Most Dangerous places -Robert Young Pelton. I have a massive fan of RYP, and his Dangerous Places series. Its a must have for any traveller, adventurer, journalist or interested reader. You cant not have a copy.(iheart double negatives) His website comebackalive.com is the bees knees.

The Travel Detective- Peter Greenberg. Mr Greenberg is arguably the most travelled man on the planet, and he compiled together a book full of 'how to's in the travel industry. He is the travel editor for NBCs Today Show, chief correspondent for the Discovery Channel, editor at large for National Geographic Traveler magazine, and a buttload of other uber high credentials. His book lets readers in on the best and biggest secrets in the travel industry. Example; have you heard of bereavement fare? Didnt think so.

Memoirs of a Seafaring Life- The narrative of William Spavens. This is a gem I found at a hole-in-the-wall used bookstore a couple of weeks ago. Its a written journal of a young sailor in the 1750s, on a massive clipper heading to new and strange lands. I never gave interest of that crap in history class in high school, but now that I dont have awful teachers spoonfeeding me, I discover them for myself, and find them extremely interesting. I was looking for old books on Blue Water sailing(how I plan to cross the Oceans) and this is brilliant. It accounts the ocean crossings, the sights and smells, and finding new land and peoples. Its pretty crazy. It alos has beautiful drawings I notmally scan over, but now appreciate. Probably becuase of the Belmont Buzz.

Back in 6 Years- Tony Robinson-Smith. I grabbed this one last night, and its pretty much a book about a British guy who did the exact thing Im planning, with a few minor tweaks. A Brit teaching in Japan, and fed up with a mundane life, he quits his job and almost overnight embarks on a journey around the world with no flights. He did it with alot more money, and planning than Im doing, but he did it non-stop for six years, and no problems. It was from 1993-1999.I also lucked out with a signed copy!

Gangs I & II- Ross Kemp. The Vic Mackey look-alike Mr Kemp is a reknown presenter and one of the foremost experts on global street gangs. Due to the nature of this expedition, Im expecting run-ins with violent street gangs, and hostile situations, so Im doing as much planning on it as I can, as its most likely the worst situation I can find myslef in. Sort of a 'hope for the best, expect the worst' kind of deal. His books, and programmes on British TV are the tits when it comes to learnign about the likes of the MS-13, Skinheads and other violent street gangs. Im going to be talking more about this topic soon. He was also on EastEnders!

The Alchemist-Paulo Coelho. Arguably the best book of all time, and although not needed for my prep, I never leave home without my tattered copy. If you havent read it yet, I suggest you do so, right MEOW.

A photo of the covers, and one of the ever-curious Daisy interrupting. Such a sweetheart.
A few others as well....

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Hokay, so this is the earth. It is round....remember that?

Well I guess I'm just going to dive right into it.
The Rwandan Contract is still on day-to-day hiatus, so instead....
The plan is a non-stop world circumnavigation. I will be amounting as many countries and experiences as geographically and safely possible. The locations and experiences will vary depending on the circumstances, and the overall trip is for the most part directionless, with direction, if you can understand my ridiculous thought process. I have several ideas, motives and goals for this project, and Ill explain them to you over time.
Rather than just posting my saved documents of plans, proposals etc, Ill spare you and post the highlights.

The world is our oyster. Today, society has bred us into a mold full of fear. We live in a world controlled by this fear, paralyzed at the thought of extreme danger imminent to our lives. Common courtesy, respect and open minds are long forgotten, A world of selfish, hateful, fearful minds now exist. But this 'world' is only North America. And the rest of the real World suffers. The travel industry is the worst hit in this Fox News, Bush Administration, iPod controlled epidemic.
The world is not a scary place full of terrorists, rapists, gangsters, criminals, crackheads and murderers, lurking around corners to pop out, steal our coats, hack us up and leave with our Hannah Montana filled iPod. Rather, it is filled with people paralyzed by their fears of this reality who in turn sacrifice compassion, courtesy, an open mind, unbelievable experiences, new friends, cultures and places. The 'box' that is the mundane life they're invested in, against all of their youthful aspirations. Ive had a few recent chats with friends about this topic, and some of them were a little 'soda pop' inspired. Yes we got into the pints and ranted about the decline of general society. The sterotypes and lack of common courtesy is so visible, and its like watching a trainwreck.
This journey is an attempt at many things. Many things will (hopefully) be accomplished. My main aspirations (besides the obvious, and previously mentioned circumnavigation and travel methods) I want to A) Prove to the world that it is not as scary as they say(Ill elaborate further..) B) Search for the greater good of humanity, in a time where I am convinced the general 'good' in people of the Western world as escaped.>(Although a majority of my trip will be in the third world, it will be a comparison to the Western world. USA can be argued as a biased example of this 'fear' and all that comes with, but it will prove a proper background.) C) Initiate a hitchhiking revival. The secret subculture that is viewed negatively needs to prove its position in the mainstream interaction of people and places. Its the best way to meet people travelling.

Sounds ambitious, and happy-go-lucky, but I know that combining my beliefs, interests, motives and lifestyle into one big ball of I-don't-know-what will provide the exact outcome I'm after; success on a large scale, in my own style. It has been done before, and it was successful. It also took a very long time, so I'm going to plan a proper schedule that will accommodate any necessary changes. And if anyone can do it, I know I can....
So in theory, a hitchhiking world tour, without leaving the surface, relying solely on the generosity of others. A full globetrott, experiencing as many countries as geographically possible, and faces and spaces as socially possible. Plan the route accordingly to maximize exposure and distance. No "No"s. Advertise; media and public awareness. No pre-planning, (ie couchsurfing, HC, hostels, arranged rides etc) Rather accept the opportunities and what is momentarily offered. I am putting myself into the mercy of the general public, in strange places. Im going to do an 'extreme stunt', if you will, to prove that this can be done, let alone enjoying a country off the tourist path....
In search of humanity in 2010. Where have all the good people gone?
I will produce a video documentary during this expedition, most likely a final product at the end of the journey. This can take a very long time, and although I plan to travel continuously for quite a while, I have the equipment and what I believe are the skills needed to pull off my vision into a production. I want to illustrate my ideas on how the world should work, vs how it currently operates. I want to exploit the contrary of the societal stereotypes. I want to meet every kid who shares the same passions I do, and let them know that anything is possible.

And to be honest, on the flip side, Ive met the skeptics, critics, and straight up doubters. I realize the ambition and magnitude of such a trip, and the risks and potential outcomes. I know what to expect, but its that you cant expect anything. In a situation like this, it will be at times left up to fate, or whatever it may be to control what I cannot. I'm seeing both sides of the fence, its its a go-ahead green field. The risks are imminent, but not a stop factor. To be honest, I'm more worried about the police, than the street gangs and thieves.

More to come...

My moustache is consuming my face.

It is, and its frighteningly authoritative. My apologies to the three and a half people who sometimes check this blog, Ive been a little slack on the updates, as Ive been busy during the day working to give me a safety net for my travels. The yob isn't exactly mentally stimulating, so I'm able to conjure up all sorts of ideas, thoughts and other useless crap to write about. I was waiting in line at the mall, chatting with a coworker, and some random dude included himself in the conversation. It was all kosher though, as he opened my mind to some new thoughts. We were talking about people in the mall, and the lack of common courtesy displayed these days. (it is ...f*cking awful.) The dude was a bit of an odd one, but he had this brilliant way to describe it. "Its a zoo, but we aren't lemmings like some say we are. Lemmings have direction, the have a final destiny. We're like sheep, forced from all angles to keep moving, no idea where or why." It was kind of a wacked perspective, but he was wack. He was, however also right. We're all just a bunch of selfish drones roaming around with no direction, moving because we feel obligated to. Social distractions subconsciously oblige us to do what we think we should do, not what we want to do.
Ive realized while spending the past 3 lunch hours in the Rideau Centre Food Court that Ottawa is officially the worst, most unfriendly, EFFED TO THE NINES city. It sucks. Royally. The people here are mean, impolite, uncourteous, zombie-ish, snobby and for the most part; idiots.
I could go into details, but I wont. I will say it was triggered by the 736th person I held a door open for that didn't even acknowledge me, let alone utter a 'thank-you' Whatever, maybe I'm just a Bitter Betty, but people SUCK.
Now that I have that out of my system, the planning is going well. Still no word on Rwanda. Despite the fact I wake up at 630, work 7-7, I still manage to get some junk done, but bedtimes have been 2am-ish. This also sucks, but I need it, and its getting me the financial stability needed to do something this stupid....
I'm going to start posting about it right meow.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

G.O.B.s theme song.

The Final Countdown-Europe (youtube)

The countdown is on, the plans are coming together...

Give me a minute to get my sh*t together, it throw it up.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Blame CNN.

Almost died today. It was pretty bananas. But like mashed bananas with strawberry guts all over the pavement.
Ive talked about it in my hitching blog, and its a factor in my theory for this upcoming trip, but you really can die anywhere, anytime doing anything, the unpredictable risk is the same in small town USA as it is in Jakarta. Sure conditions change, but as I posted recently, bad drivers, bad roads, the whole lot; is everywhere.
Today I was walking home from Uptown, jamming to I think Girl Talk at the time...and I heard a loud screech. I looked up and what followed next was surreal, and it almost killed me...A four door Mazda had lost control and was drifting violently across the main intersection, looping in front of me, easily 3ft away and continued to swerve out of control. The driver was counter spinning the wheel as fast as he could, and the car caught, and jerked forward, plowing through the front doors of the Best Western hotel on the corner. The loud crash and glass shattering rocked the silent street.It had managed to miss two massive stone pillars at the front entrance, and smashed through a conference room and the front desk. Throughout the easy 60ft skid, there were no pedestrians except myself, and no cars on his path. The intersection was stocked with traffic at the red light, and provided an audience. I ran immediately, and the driver, a short middle aged Asian man was knocked out on the airbag, but I didn't see blood. I told the concierge to call 911, but I'm sure they already had.He wasn't out cold, just completely rattled and in shock. He slurred a few words, and slowly climbed out. Apparently a van had cut him off, and it was a reacting swerve that did the damage. It was his green, so there was no traffic in his lane. Not only could he have died, myself as a pedestrian, any potential passerbys, or people in the hotel lobby could have been hit as well. It was a lucky situation. I provided a police witness statement, and was tripping the whole time, as I wasn't far off from a pretty messy spot. I didn't jaywalk, and I normally do(so badass...) but it could have been alot different...

It just reiterated how I feel about people being afraid to try things, when the risk is the same, if not more as a common commuter, walking on the sidewalk.

Unrelated but cool song/effed video. In the flowers-Animal Collective.

Vats Happening?

Ok, so I still have no received confirmed word on the Kigali contract dates. Im in a position with the NGO and the project itself that once we receive word, I will be flown out of whatever location Im in.
This means my only current commitment doesnt prevent me from doing this circumnavigation.
I am going to kick the final prep into overdrive, and make sure I cover all angles...

So regardless of where I go, there will be an adventure to fill these pages!

Back in a jiff...

Friday, January 8, 2010

Not the Gallagher brothers.

Imagine wandering through the desert for days, no food, no water, death is extending his bony hand to pick the crust out of your eye. You stumble over one more sandy dune, and discover one of these bad boys. I guess they do exist beyond Aladdin.

This shit is for cereal! No photoshop.
I dont think there is anything more dangerous in this world than a closed mind.

Football rules the world

Ive read buttloads of books, essay and theories explaining how soccer truly rules the world, underneath a hidden layer.

Not that this is proof or affiliated, I just was inspired to post it. No other sport in the world invokes as much emotion as football does.

Togo National Team Bus Attacked Before African Cup of Nations.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

If only I had €230, 000.

This is probably what I would buy. Go anywhere on the planet. Hidden, in style.

My dream car has always been the Land Rover Discovery and again, and in cities, the Range Rover (especially the 98 version), but this is just too cool....

>> Unimog
>>a very dirty version
>> another example of how to travel like a baller
>>family version

I hate cars, dont even have my G1, but the Rovers always kill it. My last hitch, I was picked up in one as a matter of fact; by some fast talking CEO...wild story too, its a comin'


Star Wars theme song playing....

Ludovic Hubler the French Globetrotting Hitchhiker.

Let Me Stay For A Day the Dutch, couch-surfing Hitchhiker.

Jessica Watson amazing young Aussie sailing solo around ze planet.

Laura Dekkar another amazing kid, Dutch girl keen on doing the same.

Katie Spotz
crazy girl rowing across the Atlantic to fundraise. Solo.

Will Gadd Canadian adventure traveller; on the Red Bull Team, and despite his beliefs, bollocks bigger than life.

Juan Villarino the brilliant Argentinian nomad who travelled the globe solely via the thumb. He made books, and entertained along the way. Very cool chap.

.... Where In The World is Nate? Me!


yep, I'm going around the world. no flights.


consider this the first word of whats coming. the kicks have dropped!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

I think Im going to do something stupid....

Buckle your seatbelts. Are you ready for it? I dont think so...

I dont think Im ready yet either....

Im gathering final preparations, and making sure I can do this, but I have a few tricks up my sleeve, and Im working on something big.
Its not that I want to hype it up, rather I need to make sure it can be done before I unveil my super secret ideas to the world.

I need to contact a few major media publications, sponsors, lawyers and home crew before I can do this, but hopefully the end of the week will let me know. If thats any indication of whats coming....


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Random Pics

My laptop is exploding with photos. Seriously, I have photos seeping through the fan of my computer, its getting a little ridiculous. Heres a few, of a rather handsome young chap if I must say...

Me just outside of my tent, Okanagan Lake, Naramata BC

A curious Raccoon. Dont judge the haircut.

Crossing the Ironman Canada Triathalon finish line. In first place, in flip-flops.

Me at one of my camps this summer in British Columbia. Probably took a picture of a stick or something not cool....

Union Station subway platform. Returning to Ottawa after Xmas.


Some of the equipment coming to Rwanda. 1.



More to come...

Ze First Update

So one of the things I was hoping to accomplish was to allow travellers to utilize my blog as a platform of filtered, useful information. There are buttloads of websites out there that are great travel resources, but are catering to the general public. Well its safe to say the general public does not know how to travel, and need these sites, so that they know to fold their underwear properly, and remember how important it is to water the plants.
But there arent nearly as many online resources for avid, off-the-map style travellers. There are a few online communities, which are fantastic places to get the low-down on what you need, but I find there is still something missing. I personally believe its always best to just throw yourself out there and do it, but thats just me.

Im going to continue using Thumbward Bound as a hitchhiking specific blog, with stories and resources, but Im going to use this one as a resource for travellers, or the curious to read and learn about how to actually use the 'world as your oyster', along with following my travels and whatever trouble I find myslef in. And I have a funny way of finding myslef in trouble. Alot.

Example, did you know the TSA(Transportation Security Administration; the governing security body of American flights and customs.) forbids Gel insoles for your shoes on a flight? Bet you didnt know that, smuggler.

Also, this past month was awful for travellers, as adolescent Africans linked with al-Qaeda decided to bring a lil' bomberoo onto the plane in his boxers and a vodka soaked ex-socialite wench stormed pilot cabins in a ridonkulous outburst. Nigeran kid labelled terrorist, beaten, thrown in jail for a million eternities. Bitter, divorced billionaire shrew gets a chance to explain herslef on celebrity TV while a crew of staff attend to her every shrieking demands. I know I know, its a twisted world.
The kid deserved to go to jail, and have what he endured happen, he did try to explode a small device on a passenger inter-border flight on Christmas Day in his Hanes, for Pete's sake.
But the tyrade displayed by Ms. Trump, currently enjoying her fourth marriage to a man half her age, was provoked by innocent children playing on the plane. Yes, kids on planes can be as bad as Sammy J and the mofo'ing snakes, but she stormed the cabin(the biggest no-no) and barked obscenities to the kids and their families. "First class this, and First class that". Suck it Ivana, noone cares. Park your behind in your Prada and shut the eff up. Of course you werent charged, but everyone else in your fine country would have had quite a different outcome.
Also, I just found that a young woman travelling had been raped in England, after she set up a meet from couchsurfing.com It happened back in October, but its still not kosher. Not only is this just one of the worst things Ive recently heard, its a huge damper on the rest of the community. I frequent the site, and I know alot of people who use it regualrly as well, and hearing of things like this is nightmarish. Some f*cked, piece of scum gained the trust of a poor, alone girl in a new country and eventually did the worst thing I think humans can do.

On a lighter note, my other discoveries online have been positive, and among epic proportions.
Ill be sharing them with you, once I compile the links and adjoining captions.

Give me like 30 mins.

Im a dork.

The Prodigal Update.

Ok, so not only have I been MIA, and not keeping with the blog, my last two posts were invisible. Great.
Anyways, HAPPY NEW YEAR, its 2010, and its going to be a good year. I can feel it in me bones.

Well sadly my location has not changed much since my last post. I am still in Ottawa, and I am still unsure of my contract in Rwanda. My co-ordinator and contact is still on holidays in Europe, and the last email I received said we still werent sure on the plot location. These things take time, and Im aware of this, however the mental wait is just getting worse.

This summer, my two travelling mates and I were headed for Australia and New Zealand for several months. Well, they went, ...treeplanting, cherry picking, hitchhiking, all that cool stuff. Oh and for the holiday period we had planned to hitch a yacht to Fiji, and spend it in Vanuatu. I KNOW!. I was ready to go, and then I got an email from the NGO saying I needed to call them urgently. The Rwandan Project had just been set up, and they wanted me for it. It was an offer I couldnt refuse. I did hesitate over some of the details, as it would be a slightly dodgy contract, but I knew I had to go. No tropical island or laid back lifestyle could top my work in Africa. I never really second guessed it.
We made our way back from the Okanagan and they flew to Sydney on the same day my flights were BOOKED and paid for to Kigali, Nov 9.
Its now Jan 3, 2010 and Im still stuck in cold, miserable Canada. Quite frustrated.
The only thing is, I cant be, because as I said, these things take time. Major projects, in conjunction with partnering governments can be very finicky, as I am learning.
The nature of the situation as also left me waiting on a day-to-day basis, so Ive opted not to find work in Ottawa while Im here, rather prepare and gather possible endeavours during the contract. And my millions are running out....

I did have a lovely Christmas however. I spent it with a very close new friend, who was actually one of the girls who picked me up hitchhiking the day we left for BC, several months ago. We were both in similar boats, and decided we would spend the holidays together. You may raise a brow, but it was my best Christmas yet.
Travelling, you meet all kinds of people, and almost every one of them is someone you can hold very close to you. The hands people are willing to extend to someone from another place is something you cannot find as a local. I dont think it exists. Ive managed to find some pretty amazing people along my travels, and it is only going to grow exponentially.

Example; I recently hitched (in -20C) to Toronto. I had the CEO of a major multinational pick me up in his Range Rover. He was Colin Farrells cousin, and he proved it. I also had an epic trip with him, thats a future entry I can guarantee you wont beleive.....
On the way home, a retired superstar MMA fighter picked me up. He was from Mexico, and showed me Youtube videos of him winning several fights, and training with some of the biggest names, on his iPhone. He told me some crazy life stories, and invited me to train for free with him whenever I wanted at the gym he owned in town...
I promised to set up an interview with him for one of my magazines, and he was thrilled. He then treated me as a close personal friend, and referred me to one of his principle Olympic sponsors, which turned out to be Nike. Im waiting on a phone call. Im not saying Im going to get a shoe deal, but who knows, the email was promising. The meet certainly wouldnt have happened if not for being on the road.

See the world is our oyster.

All for right now, I have several articles and entires to put up. Ill be up all night, and Im going to get this gosh darn blog rolling again.

P.s. I have a few ideas that are going to rock the socks of the entire universe.......

Pon de Floor.