The longer we travel, the more couples like us we discover or even meet. Like us they dreamed about traveling, like us they made the big trip happen, and like us they document their experiences online. In the Two Toothbrushes traveler interview series we introduce fellow traveling and blogging couples to share their story and draw inspiration from them.
Kaspars Misinš and Una Baufala have been together for 8 years, traveling for 1.5. They are from Latvia and they document their travels, including a cross-India bike trip, on their blog, We Are From Latvia.
Where are your toothbrushes, where are they headed next, and why?
Currently [mid-February 2015] they are in Fuerteventura, which is one of the Canary Islands. We have come here to do our 4th Workaway volunteer work and escape the cold European winter. We like it here very much and we feel like we could stay here until the summer or even longer.
We know that we want go back to Asia in the winter.
What’s your definition of home?
It is a place where the two of us are together and where we feel good. You can’t really describe it, but you feel it. And for us it is as simple as that. Sometimes we need to rent an apartment or a hotel room, other times we just need our corner to lie down and put our backpacks.
It’s the same as, for example, with people. With some you work together every day for many years and you don’t really know them, with others you go on a road trip the day you meet.
How do you make yourself feel at home wherever you go?
We don’t do anything special. We don’t really think of it. It all comes naturally. If the place, people, and atmosphere are the right one, we start to feel like at home very quickly.
This also has a downside. Leaving your home is harder than leaving some hotel room. And when you are doing it every few weeks or months you experience it again and again. But, of course, you get used to it as well. As there is the next home coming…
Why this (or the most recent) trip, why now (then)?
It was summer 2012, we had just returned from our first trip abroad, and we were sure about one thing: in a year we will move to another country. We felt an urge to go and see what it’s like to live abroad. We felt that we would like that. But at that time we were not thinking that we could travel from one country to another and then to the next one. It felt like something rich people do.
Nine months later, we still had no plan, how we would do it and where we would go. But then an idea occurred to Kaspars and few days later we knew that during the summer we would save as much money as we can and we would go to India, to cycle across it. Why India? It’s big. It’s not expensive. It’s interesting. Why cycling? Cycling across such a huge country sounds like an interesting adventure.
We felt scared, but at the same time we felt much better because now we had a plan. And now, more than a year later, we can say that it has been the best decision we have ever made.
What were your greatest challenges in making the trip happen? How did you overcome them?
As our plan was last-minute, we were so busy making it happen we didn’t have time to worry too much. A month later we bought our one-way plane tickets and four months later we left Latvia. And in between we had to follow a schedule of vaccines needed. We had to upgrade our bicycles. There were a lot of things to do. At the end we also gave away or sold all our stuff.
Looking back, the biggest challenge was the plan itself. There was the initial moment when we didn’t know anything about long-term traveling. Then we started reading up about it and soon we were overwhelmed with information, with all the choices. So again we didn’t know what to do and how to do it. But after we had our plan, things went much more smoothly.
What do you enjoy the most about your traveling life?
We enjoy seeing different cultures. We enjoy learning new things. We love to see the world the way it is not the way it is shown on the news or in a travel agency’s brochure.
Share a moment from your travels that you will share with future generations.
We were cycling in the middle of nowhere in India. It was deserted all around. A police car drove by and stopped. Four policemen got out and gestured that we must stop. Had we done anything wrong? It was our second month of cycling through India, and the first time police stopped us. We stopped, the policemen approached us, and asked to take a photo with us. One of the policemen even knew what Latvia is. Usually Indians don’t know Latvia. In the five months we spent in India we met fewer than ten Indians who knew that Latvia is a country.