The question in the headline came up on recently on Nomadic Matt's Nomadic Network on Facebook, and it didn't take long for a particular traveler to came to mind. Here's what I wrote on the forum:
Many have inspired me, from Nomadic Matt to Rita Golden Gelman to Paul Theroux, among countless others, but I’d like to give a special shout-out to Andy Lee Graham, a champion “Hobo” world traveler who may not get all the credit he deserves for inspiring travel.
Andy’s a little eccentric but wildly enthusiastic about travel life, and he makes no bones about how he rose from an empty, dead-end, alcoholic’s life in midwest America more than 20 years ago to an enriching, productive life through world travel. He’s enjoyed life on the road, worked hard to sustain himself, and shared his thoughts and experiences on social media ever since.
Several years ago, while sinking into a new recliner, aimlessly clicking the TV remote and wondering how I was going to beat a bad case of retirement blues, I found Andy’s YouTube videos. At that time, Andy, perhaps more than anyone, led me to realize that traveling could change my life for the better, too. As a result, I hit the road in 2016 and haven’t looked back.
If you are unfamiliar with Andy, take some time to visit his sites. Maybe you won’t like his style, but he knows a lot about traveling and, if nothing else, he’s prolific and entertaining.
What I didn't say on the forum is that Andy's also sensitive to criticism and can be prickly about it. Unfortunately, I pissed him off a couple of years ago when I questioned some of his ideas and he banned me from his site. But that doesn't diminish the admiration I still have for what he's done, nor my thanks for helping to inspire me to the life I lead today. Travel well, Andy, always my friend.
Quotes For A Good Life On The Road
"Smile a lot, talk to strangers, accept all invitations, eat everything offered.”
-- Sage advice from Rita Golden Gelman, author of Tales of a Female Nomad, an inspiring story of how a dramatic change of life led to her travels around the world, one of the first books I read on my journey. Now see my complete collection of travel quotes online by clicking on "True Travel Tales" under "More" in the menu above.
Solas "Best Travel Writing" Awards
Saysha: What Happened?
13th Annual Solas Awards for Best Travel Writing
(Read it here)
Who Is David Hunter Bishop?
I'm a retired journalist from Hawaii who tired quickly of retirement and hit the road as a slow, solo world traveler in August 2016. I've spent time in 18 countries on four continents and right now I'm enjoying life in Kota Kinabalu, on the Island of Borneo, Malaysia.
I've been interviewed about my travels by Nomadic Matt, and Expat Focus, and here's a great story by veteran Borneo newsman and prolific author James Ritchie about our meeting in Kuching, titled, A Confluence of Adventure Writers .
Also online ...
GARIFUNA SETTLEMENT DAY
Still the most authentic, lively and colorful local cultural festival I've seen on the road.
I found this Alternative Arts and Music Festival in the Amazon highlands of Peru. What a find!
Here's how I found a friend and discovered what's real in a Lima, Peru, neighborhood.
My partner and I were left high and dry in this Siem Reap Rip. Be careful!