a country a year

As we sat down for breakfast, he looked over at me with a question, “Shall we make it a goal to travel to one new country per year?” This was a goal I could live with. The past years have taken us to new and familiar parts of the world. In 2007, I took him to the US for the first time after I had made my first visit to Poland. In 2008, we traveled throughout Switzerland. He had been before, but it was my first time. We saw Geneva, Interlaken, Zurich, Neuchatel, Solothurn, and a dozen villages in between.

The summertime took us to Luxembourg (new) and next-door Belgium (familiar). Throughout 2009, we explored his homeland: Berlin (natürlich), Munich, Cologne, Potsdam, and Dresden. Two more trips to the US to see Oregon and Washington. He had his first American Christmas in 2010, a year that took me for the first time to South Africa, then Portugal.

Making a goal out of this is not a bad idea. “Does a country count as new if only one of us has been?” He has explored the  Scandinavian countries, I have covered Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and Cambodia. “Yes.” This summer will take us to Turkey. Next year, hopefully to Indonesia. “It’s a deal.”

Images of Interlaken, Switzerland.

4 responses to “a country a year

  1. Bravo! You have set an admirable and exciting goal. I look forward to the chronicling of its perpetual achievement.

    • Thanks for the encouragement. It’s exciting and a bit scary! A colleague told me a story once about a man who had traveled to every country in the world. He made the goal, worked six months on a ship, then traveled for six months and actually achieved his goal. I was in awe.

  2. i think it’s an incredible deal! i travelled to a recent new one, romania, but transylvania which used to be hungarian but it still counts because the stamp in my passport still says romania. and it got me thinking, there are so many countries nearby that i haven’t visited yet. i should get a move on, not like its a race. but you’re right, making an official “deal” with yourself certainly inspired you to actually go for it.

  3. What a fantastic idea!

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