Is this it?!

Sean Keener's Personal Blog

November 13th, 2015

5 Travel Photos

Keener Kids "Surfing"

Twins Pacific City

Blaize

Kai Giggle

Pepper Sand Pacific City

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We want to see your 5 favourite travel photos!
CHALLENGE: Share your top 5 favourite photos from your adventures. They can be places you found beautiful, amazing food, or silly selfies.
Haven’t been on a big RTW trip yet? We want to see your photos too! Show us your favourite family trips, your five favourite places to visit in your hometown, or go on Google/Pinterest/Instagram and share photos of the five places you want to visit the most!

November 12th, 2015

Packing Light and Simple

I like to start with a small bag, then work backwards from there to “fill” it, making sure to leave some space.

Here are my 2 favorite bags now that are carry-onable, and enough to travel around the world with.

The Tortuga Backpack

and the Minaal

Both bags, are a superb and will force you to pack light. Injoy!

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Show us what is in your pack!

CHALLENGE 1: Share with us what’s in your pack right now, or what you bring on a long-term trip. Have you changed how much you bring since you first started our challenge?

CHALLENGE 2: Pretend you are going on a six-month trip and pack a bag. Show us what you are bringing. Do you think you should bring more? Bring less? Do you have any questions about what you should pack that you’d like to ask the community to help answer?

November 11th, 2015

Phrozen to your phone

After watching Rolf travel around the world in 2010 with no bags, I think a passport, access to money and the clothes are my back are the only things I HAVE to have.

If I had to bring 1 item, it’s a smartphone. There is so much value packed into that thing. It’s also the biggest crutch and distractor for awesome experiences. See photo below.
phrozen to your smartphone

Photo courtesy of Benji Wagner of Polerstuff

Being “Phrozen” to your smartphone, is the exact opposite of being present in life. How can I engage to the world around me, if my face and attention is buried in my phone? How can you?
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QUESTION:
What’s your #1 thing you cannot travel without (besides your passport or money)?

November 9th, 2015

Cultural Paranoia – don’t be a Panic Merchant

I’ve stopped watching and reading the news for sometime now for a bunch of reasons. One of the big ones besides it doesn’t add joy to my life, and from what I can tell, those around me, is the cultural paranoia of “news”.

“If it bleeds, it leads”. Every hear that? – sounds like a fun way to run a business, eh?

I LOVE this value of the Indie Travel Manifesto, “Practice Caution, Not Paranoia

When I used to watch the news, or when I run into people that bow at the alter of news, sometimes, these folks appear to live in a state of fear. They are fearful of this and fearful of that.

If the topic turns to international travel, it’s hard for me to believe, but there are still some folks who this is is “dangerous” over there. Where ever that is.

In the 2015 Peace/Danger Index the USA was 92 out of 162 in peacefulness and considered “medium” from a peaceful standpoint. Cuba is considered more peaceful according to this index.

Lists like this aside, every country or place in the world has places that are less safe and more safe. I’ve found being paranoid about it, is the WORST thing todo. Even going to “dangerous” places, is often safe in my experience. Locals are still living and going about their daily life.

Co-Founder of BootsnAll, Chris Heidrich used to call these people “Panic Merchants” – Folks that were buyers and sellers of panic.

I choose to not be one. What’s your choice?
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When traveling it’s good be be cautious and safe, but you don’t want to become so paranoid about your safety that you don’t enjoy your journey.

QUESTION:
How can you practice travel caution without becoming paranoid?

November 7th, 2015

Co-creating the Indie Travel Manifesto

November 6th, 2015

Long-term Travel: Top 5 Travel Tips

1) Just Go.
Don’t over think it. Today’s world can feel like it is built on series of rules. There are not rules, and you truly can do, whatever you want.

There are no rules. Go Long-Term Travel. You will thank-yourself later. In many cases, its a better investment that a college education. I’d like to see GAP years and around the world trips be as ubiquitous as a colleage education one day. I suspect it will be better for humanity, and the world than just sending more kids to college for an often times, over priced. education.

2) Bring 1/2 the stuff and double the money

3) Start somewhere comfortable to get your mojo going. If you are from the USA, start in Australia, NZ, or the EU, instead of sub saharan Africa (Do go though). You will build confidence and better habits building up to places that are more shocking to you culturally

4) When/if you are saving to go, get down and dirty and cut, cut, cut non-necessities. $5 bucks a day for your skinny latte can go a lot farther in places around the globe.

5) Take one of BootsnAll’s Long-Term Travel Courses. These 30 days of free emails, were built to get more people on the road, because I believe that is the best thing for humanity. We do link to some of our products throughout, but we also link to many more products/services that we don’t have an interest in. We build this to get you on the road…it’s free, use it and give us feednack after so we can continue to make it better. It will be worth your time.

QUESTION:
What are your top 5 travel tips you’d like a new traveler to know before going abroad

Even if you haven’t been on a RTW trip, we bet you’ve traveled some. To family for holidays, camping with friends, or exploring your hometown by bike. Tell us 5 things you’ve learned during your travel experiences.

November 5th, 2015

Local Interactions Perferred

When I think of today’s prompt, I’m thinking about all the information out there and available to travelers. Even though I co-created the Indie Travel Manifesto with Rolf and colleagues at BootsnAll in February 2012, when I read this value, it makes me think.

“Indie travelers value local information over received information”

I like what the full value says. It doesn’t mean “received” information is bad, it just super duper awesome to get a local view or interaction.

Think about it, do you want to travel the world, and hang out with people from your city/country? It feels safe to do so, but is it as expansive?

For me, I just love and feel loved when I put myself out there in other places and take that risk. Say Hi. Ask a question. Get out of the major tourist hubs where the local interactions are more often “built” for you.

I’m recovering from a quick bout of stret throat, so I’m not able to try the challenge just yet, but I intend to.

QUESTION:
Tell us about an experience you had from information you got from a local.

CHALLENGE: Pretend you’re a first-time visitor to the city/country you are in. Walk up to 5 people on the street and ask them their favourite thing to do in the city (restaurant, park, place to ride bikes, etc).
Now pick one of those things and go do it!
Did you learn somewhere new? How was it asking a stranger for local information? Where did you go and what was it like? Tell us all about your experience and how local information can help you learn about a place.

November 4th, 2015

What is HomeTown Travel?

As I’ve been doing, I’m changing the prompt to suit what I want to write about. 🙂

What is HomeTown Travel?

Simply: Getting out of your comfort zone, ie. doing things that you don’t EVER do, in your hometown. Your more likely to have a travel like experience in this case versus:

– going the same way to and from work
– hanging out with the same people, doing the same things
– watching the same “shows”
– getting into patterns that create comfort, and in my experience, less challenge.

The answer to today’s prompt, is of course, yes.

QUESTION:
Is there an awesome coffee shop, a local festival, or a place to get away that locals know, but many visitors don’t? Tell us a place in your hometown, or in the town you’re in now, that you think more visitors should experience.

November 3rd, 2015

What has travel taught me?

1) My way is not the only way
2) Humility
3) Beauty
4) Love
5) Endurance
6) It’s not about the sights, its about the people
7) Breathe, slow down.
8) Everyday is Saturday – Here’s a movie about long-term travel
9) There is not a “wrong” way
10) Let go of control

QUESTION 1:
What has long-term travel taught you?
QUESTION 2:
What do you hope to learn from a long-term or RTW trip?

November 2nd, 2015

Options over Possessions

Today’s question presumes that the reader/writer thinks that options are better than possesion.

QUESTION:
How is having experiences better than having possessions? (From the Indie Travel Challenge)

I do prefer options over possessions. I’m unsure if everyone else in the world, or at least the people that read/participate will think so. 🙂

The discussion on the Indie Travel Manifesto page has a few thoughts on why?

Here are a few pieces about this exact topic:

The Freedom of Travel vs the Paralysis of Stuff
Collect experiences, not things
Thoughts on minimalism

As for me, “stuff” weighs be down, both in a physical and emotional sense. You’ve probably heard this before, but the idea that the more keys one has on their key ring is a sign of how tied down one is to “stuff”

One of the biggest possessions that it appears Americans and many other countries “love” – is Love of home ownership. And in many cases, multiple homes, multiple cars, more clothes, more shoes, more, more, more!

I’m not denying that one needs a home, and the potential benefits of owning some assets. At some point, they can become a yoke.

I read a book in early 2015 that is all about this idea “options over possessions” called Essentialism

I read dozens of books per year, and this book described what I was already thinking and doing in my personal and business life which was.

Simplifying the crap out of it.

As I was in the divorce process, I made a dozen plus trips to Goodwill. The idea being, if I did not LOVE this item, get rid of it. At this point, I don’t LOVE any “thing” – I love people, animals, and the world around me.

Essentialism also justifies the idea of saying “no” more. As the subtitle of the book suggests, “The Disciplined Pursuit of Less”

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