May 21, 2009

Wanted: one World Cup travel partner

This past weekend I had a ridiculously good time in Toronto with Mike Li, an old friend from Laurier, and his roommate Jane. Though significantly hindered by tomfoolery, we started planning our trip to Southern Africa next year.

There’s the Kalahari Desert, wine tours on the Cape, Table Mountain, cage diving with Great Whites, Kruger National Park, beaches on the Indian Ocean, the Okavango Delta, Victoria Falls – and, of course, the small matter of attending multiple World Cup games.

With all of that on the table, combined with the complications of traveling to/within South Africa, it’s good that I have faith in Mike and Jane as travel partners. The only problem is that I need to find a companion of my own to occupy my extra seat at the games (Mike and Jane have their own tickets to the same games I do).

As such, I have thought up some criteria that will hopefully help me identify and rate potential candidates. If you think you’re up to it, don’t hesitate to let me know – this is going to take some serious planning and I’d like to know who I’m going with as soon as possible.

Anyway here’s what I’m looking for, in order of importance:

1) Someone with the time and money.
I’d like to be in-country for the entire tournament, which runs from June 11 - July 11. Including travel time to/from South Africa, the total trip would last close to five weeks, and cost $5,000 at the very least. Obviously without the potential cash and vacation time (which is all I have at this point), coming along is a non-starter.

2) A seasoned and adventurous traveller.
A very close second to having the time and money is your attitude towards travel. South Africa isn’t a Caribbean all-inclusive or backpacking through Western Europe; it’s going to be intense, exhausting and dangerous, and I need to trust that who I’m going with can handle that. At the same time, I’m not going half-way around the world to be overly cautious – you should also be willing to take calculated risks in the name of experiencing something truly unique.

3) A passing interest in soccer and Africa.
I don’t expect you to be as football- and Africa-obsessed as myself, but I don’t want to spend the month explaining the Offside Rule and the history of South Africa (I couldn’t do the latter very well anyway). A general sense of curiosity about the two is enough, as this is clearly the least important qualification – I’m sure spending thousands of dollars can generate a passing interest quite quickly.

(Photo credit: Cape Town's Table Mountain, courtesy of Wikipedia)


Anonymous said...

Wow. That sounds so enticing.

I would be in were it not for the first qualification; unfortunately, there are few teaching jobs that end before June 11th. Also, I owe many ducats to those nasty student loans people.

Pencil me in for Brazil, 2014...

- Scott

Mike said...

Clearly insanely tempting. Especially with the Kalahari on that potential to-do list.

But while I like to think I meet criteria 2 and 3 (definitely in Africa, and I think I meet the 'interest' portion for football), 1 is pretty crazy out of my reach at the moment. I'm sure I'll be listening breathlessly as you complete preparations, though. That will be amazing.

Anonymous said...

pfff I fail on two counts - no money/time and dismal interest in the most mundane sport of all time.

Go Leafs Go.


sydney said...

Alright. After having an incredibly serious and convincing discussion with Bicky while getting my hair cut, I would like to submit my application for World Cup Travel partner.

1) I'm living at home right now, and plan to be for a little while. Thus, I'll have no rent to pay and will be able to save up a fair sum. I'm not meaningfully employed at the moment, so I'll likely be able to get time off.

2) My independent travels around Australia for four months have seasoned me for traveling like a steak ready for the grill. I've been to 4 continents, and 7 countries (if I remember correctly, and not including layovers). I've been through 2 Outward Bound courses, which have prepared me for wilderness survival, if needed.

3) I desperately want to visit and experience Africa. The shark diving sounds bad-ass; definitely something I'd be down for. I just hope my support for Germany will not challenge your fervent championing of Spain.

The cards are on the table, sport.


ps. I thought I'd also mention that my skills with a camera can certainly document the adventure fairly well. said...


Thanks for the effort you took to expand upon this post so thoroughly.

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