I really enjoy reading inspiring stories about inspiring people who are doing inspiring things. Lately, these inspirations have been popping up right and left, seemingly everywhere all at once! I want to share a few with you; maybe these stories will inspire you, as well.
First is the story of a man who began driving around the world in 1989 – that’s 23 years ago! Gunther and Christine Holtorf took off on an 18-month tour of Africa and just never quit. This story is inspiring in so many ways, not just the trip they’ve been on and the logistics of driving in some of the countries they’ve been in, but also that he is now continuing to drive solo after his wife’s recent passing. You probably haven’t heard about these two because Gunther didn’t write a blog or publish updates on Facebook, although he is an amazing photographer and has taken scores of photos over the years; perhaps a photo book will be published in the future! Their story is being told by Canadian-born photographer, David Lemke and BBC News Magazine – watch this video to find out more about this fantastic journey. My hat’s off to you, Gunther!
Next is Andrew Hyde. Now here’s a guy who really knows the meaning of minimalism! Andrew sold and/or gave away the majority of his possessions, keeping only 15 items (plus his underwear and socks!) and travels the world with just these 15 things – and his socks and underwear. Read about Andrew on his blog, or check out this interview by Scott Berkun. Or read them both! Andrew inspires me to continue re-evaluating every single thing I have, deciding if it truly is something I want to keep or not. Rock on, Andrew!
And then there’s Emily Finch. This mom of six lives in Portland, Oregon and does all her driving around on a bicycle. Yup, that’s right – a bicycle built for… seven! Her kids range in age from two to eleven and all of them fit on mom’s wheeled transportation device! Wow! Her dedication to being car-less is so inspirational to me that I even considered doing the same thing – packing Dinah Dog, my 15-year-old Golden Retriever, and me onto a bicycle built for “one and dog” and hitting the roads with the wind in our hair. I’m inspired by her dedication, her ability to referee that many kids in such a small space, and to do it all wearing a dress! Yes, I think Dinah would look great riding in the front of a bakfiets – don’t you? Click here to read the story of Emily and her kids on their Bakfiets Cargobike. Click here if you want to know more about the bakfiets, or if you’re in the Pacific Northwest and want to get your own, click here. Emily, you are truly amazing!
And there you have it – three amazing people who’ve come across my computer screen recently who have inspired me to roam the world more, to own fewer things, and to take on seemingly insurmountable odds with a smile on my face, although the dress will have to wait. Reading (and watching) these stories has sparked something in me that I can not deny – I am motivated to continue my own adventures regardless of what shows up in my path. I hope you enjoy their stories, too.
Thank you, Gunther, Andrew, and Emily! You are all rock stars!