Most readers of Far Away Places will be familiar with the cast of characters already. You’re likely friends or family or colleagues we’ve known for years. That said, we’re sure to meet lots of new folks along the way who might like a little background on who we are and what we’re doing. To that end, here are some brief introductions.
Kim is a California girl and a free spirit. Born and raised in gold-rush country, she grew up riding horses and motorcycles, finding fun in the natural world around her.
Kim has spent most of her life working in dentistry, first as an office manager, than as a dental assistant, and finally as a dental hygienist. She feels called to connect with people, and is one of those rare folks who can strike up a conversation with anyone, anywhere, anytime, about anything.
As a young adult, Kim lived in California, Minnesota, and Arizona. More recently, she’s spent time in Idaho, Washington, and Oregon. Though she’s enjoyed every place she’s lived, it’s northern California that feels like home. Well, northern California or anywhere with a sunny beach.
Kim values constant learning and development. She believes that it’s important to build strong relationships — with family, friends, and colleagues. Her motto: “Life is an adventure!” There’s so much to discover and experience. She’s always wanted to take time to explore the world, but never really had the opportunity. Work and family made everything but short excursions impossible. Now, though, she’s seizing the opportunity to travel the United States, Canada, and beyond, meeting new people and stumbling upon new adventures.
Kim, dogsledding in central Oregon
J.D. Roth is a native Oregonian and life-long nerd. He’s never lived more than 25 miles from his hometown, which in turn is just a few miles from where his great-great-grandfather settled in the late 1890s. No wonder he’s itching to pack up and explore the world!
After earning a psychology degree, J.D. went to work for the family business, selling boxes. He always wanted to write, however, and in the mid-1990s he began to blog before “blog” was even a word. At first he wrote about cats, computers, and comic books, but eventually he founded the award-winning Get Rich Slowly, through which he became an accidental personal-finance expert.
J.D. wrote Your Money: The Missing Manual, created the year-long “Get Rich Slowly” course, and contributed the monthly “Your Money” column to Entrepreneur magazine for several years. Nowadays, he writes about self-improvement at his personal site.
For a long time, J.D. was a homebody. He was afraid to try new things and meet new people. In time he began to feel like life was passing him by. He decided to confront his fears, to change from introvert to extrovert while exploring the world around him. Since 2007, he’s been to over twenty countries (he’s particularly fond of South America) and as many states. Since 2012, he’s been happy to share these adventures with Kim.
J.D., snorkeling in the Galapagos Islands
2005 Bigfoot 30MH29SL
During their year-long journey across the United States, Kim and J.D. will spend most of their time in a 2005 Bigfoot 30MH29SL motorhome.
2004 Mini Cooper
As they travel, Kim and J.D. will tow their 2004 Mini Cooper to use as a shuttle vehicle in places where a 29-foot motorhome just isn’t practical. (Can you imagine driving an RV through the streets of New York City? In the winding roads of Glacier National Park? Neither can we.)
The Spirit of Adventure
Our objective on this trip is to live the spirit of adventure. We want to meet new people and explore new places. We want to do the things that scare us. We feel fortunate to have enough time and money to travel like this while only in our early forties. We want to make the most of it.
To that end, we want to get off the beaten path, to explore the forgotten corners of our nation. We want to talk to people of all types, to share their stories. We want to document the vast variety of natural beauty in the U.S. and Canada. Most of all, we want to enjoy all that life has to offer.