2015 - 2022
USA & The World
Only once you have felt a lot of inconvenience can you actually enjoy the comfort
The death of his friend Ann Marie woke Tom up to his own mortality and forced him to reconsider what he wanted to do in his life. To get the most out of his life and deal with the pain and loss, he decided to walk.
On April 2nd, 2015, after getting all his affairs sorted at home on the US east coast, he started the walk.
He saw all kinds of religions, landscapes, and people, experience utmost friendliness, was held a gunpoint and spent countless points alone in his tent. Even though he never was fully alone - Savannah, his dog accompanied him on the wonderful journey around the world
Forced into adventure, but driven by the desire to better understand the world, in 2022, seven years later he has become the tenth person to walk around the world, and his dog, Savannah, became the first dog to hold that record.
How Savannah joined him
After four months of walking the USA, Tom arrived in Texas on his way to Mexico. Having spent countless nights in his tent, he got woken up many times by noises.
Getting a dog was initially a very utilitarian dedicion. I thought it would be great have someone watching over me at night
He got Savannah as a puppy and not knowing anything else, Savannah loved life on the road.
She would walk the 24 miles (50km) with me everyday and play in the evening. She had the best life
Dead bodies in El Salvador
Tom knew that his journey would also be very dangerous. Even though he only had two threatening moments in the 7 years (one of which was a misunderstanding with the military), especially his stint through Central America was the most dangerous part of his trip.
In El Salvador I actually the dead bodies of a husband and wife who had been executed
Even though much of the crime is centered around gang activities, this was a difficult start.
The incomparable hospility of the muslim world
But most striking for Tom was hospitality. No matter where we went he was astonished by the friendliness of people towards him as a stranger. He was invited into private homes, served tea and meals, and often offered to spend the night.
Especially in islamic countries, such as nothern Africa I could that the hospitatliy was particulary great and extensive
For him, one country stood out in particular. Uzbekistan's people were so full of curiosity and friendliness that Tom realized that they went well beyond anything he had ever done for strangers.
People were so welcoming and I thought, I would never do this
This is one of the many lessons Tom took away. Giving people the benefit of the doubt, being kind and actually helping instead of judging.
The beauty of inconvenience
It is very obvious that walking the world for 7 years is not particularly convenient. And in general, walking often isn't. It is slow and you are exposed to nature. But it also is so much more. And especially because it is slow, it allowed Tom to travel to places almost everyone else skips. I allowed him to find beauty in the small things and not just the highlights of a country.
I had hundreds of best meals. Beacue after days of eating poorly I apprecited a real meal so much
Nowadays we want to have as much convenience as possible. We want to eat right when we are hungry, take the car because it is fast and dry, sleep longer in a bed, and shower as often as we, please.
But it is really only once you embrace inconvience and experience it that you really enjy convience.
In the end, it comes down to gratitude. Being very intentionally grateful for all the things we have, realizing that a hot shower is not normal for most of the world, and being able to eat the moment we feel hungry is a privilege most of the world's population doesn't have.
For Tom talking a walk is still a fundamental part of his life
People should walk way more. Instead of sitting in the traffic jam in your care, take 10 minutes longer and walk to work. Enjoy nature and the world, bump into people and chat and you will be ahppier person.
Tom Turcich has been a guest on our Podcast "Art of Adventuring"
We talked about the dangers and the beautiful moments of his walk, and why cars are the worst thing happening to cities
After the death of his friend Ann Marie, Tom's dream of walking around the world was born. In 2015 he started walking in 7 years later 2022 he became the 10th person to walk around the world. And Savannah became the first dog to achieve this. Tom is a photographer, writer and speaker and currently live in Washington State, USA.
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