Hi, I’m Rob. I play the role of husband and dad in the saga upon which you are about to embark. I’m joined by Shani, my wife and mother to our mischievous, imp of a daughter, “S”. Together, we are the Bell family. This is a portal, if you will, into the story of our travel adventures. Part journal, part travel review and all Bell peculiarities, we hope the offerings here will inspire some of you to embrace our world through the medium of travel.
We are by no means globetrotters. We are a middle class family that resides in Phoenix, Arizona. What we are though, is a family who has come together to prioritize the tiny sliver of time we will have together on this earth, with shared experiences. Shortly after becoming parents, Shani and I decided to put an emphasis on the intangible moments we share together. Yes, we live a comfortable life with all of the material trappings that middle class Americans have come to enjoy, but all of the extra…well, all of the extra goes to the things that no human can ever take away from us…memories. Whether it’s a membership to our local science center, attending concerts, or as evidenced by this blog…traveling, these shared experiences would be the focus of how we invested our time and money.
Travel is by far, the most enticing of the shared experiences we have found so far. It also is the hardest of those shared experiences to decide upon, plan, finance and execute. This would probably be a good time to explain the meaning behind the title Have Wife, Will Travel. While Shani and I agree on all of the important things that couples should agree on, we are still very different individuals. My wife is a planner. The unexpected and unplanned can often throw her for a loop. I am convinced that most aspects of planning a trip bring Shani immense joy and excitement. Why on earth would I want to rob her of those experiences?
I am, by contrast, not a planner. While Shani is creating color coded spreadsheets, detailing all of the particulars of any particular journey, my head is busy imagining and mentally visualizing the enjoyment and adventure we will be sharing together. The spreadsheet is real folks. For those that regularly peek into our lives here, the trip isn’t officially real until the spreadsheet has been started. While I respect and show deference to the all powerful spreadsheet, my first reaction to looking at one causes my blood pressure to spike as if I was walking into a Walmart, Chuck E Cheese or other similar highly chaotic environment. In the end, we balance each other out. She’ll plan, I’ll imagine and later, write as a cathartic exercise which helps maintain my sanity. Hence the title, Have Wife, Will Travel.
We genuinely hope you enjoy what is to follow. We hope what we share resonates and encourages you to live the best lives for yourselves. While there will be plenty of opinion and subjective offerings, I have tasked myself with providing plenty of perspective and objectivity where I can. No matter what value you may take away from these words, our sincere desire is that this can somehow contribute to your happiness. So, buckle up and open your mind. Let’s go some places together and see what we learn!
Travel makes one modest, you see what a tiny place you occupy in the world. — Gustave Flaubert