Four Months of ‘One World One Year’

Serve Daily - - NEWS - By Brit­nee John­ston

It’s hard to be­lieve that my hus­band, Mark, and I are al­ready a third of the way through our one-year jour­ney around the world. We packed our bags at the end of May and have trav­eled to 16 coun­tries through­out Asia, Rus­sia and Europe since then. From large ci­ties to re­mote is­lands, each coun­try has pro­vided its own ad­ven­ture.

Early in our trip we en­tered Rus­sia to ride on the Trans-Siberian Rail­way. Soon after ar­riv­ing in the coun­try we saw a TV news broad­cast about a crashed air­plane. It was re­ported in Rus­sian so we didn’t un­der­stand it and didn’t have in­ter­net ac­cess at the time to find out more.

We later learned that it was a Malaysia Air­lines flight that was pre­sum­ably shot down over Ukraine, and that the Rus­sians were blam­ing Amer­i­can es­pi­onage for it. This wor­ri­some news made us won­der how Rus­sians would re­act if they re­al­ized we’re from the United States.

We had our an­swer two days later on a bus ride when a young Rus­sian man said that the driver would kill us if he found out we were Americans, but to not worry be­cause he told him we were Ital­ians in­stead.

Con­cerns for our safety were height­ened, how­ever, we chose to stay in the coun­try and com­plete the in­fa­mous train ride as planned. We spent 20 days in Rus­sia and were lucky that noth­ing bad hap­pened to us. It might have helped that we started telling peo­ple we were from Canada.

It was a re­lief to fi­nally exit the coun­try and en­ter the safety of Scan­di­navia. In Fin­land we stayed at a sum­mer cot­tage with Mark’s ex­tended fam­ily where we re­cov­ered from the crowded ci­ties and sum­mer heat of Rus­sia, and be­fore that, China. It was a much needed break where we en­joyed swimming and boat­ing in the lake and loung­ing in a sauna. From there we con­tin­ued to Norway where we went north of the Arc­tic Cir­cle to the Lo­foten Is­lands. This was one of our fa­vorite places we’ve vis­ited with its stun­ning moun­tain­ous land­scape.

Another place we looked for­ward to was the United King­dom and re­turn­ing to an English-speak­ing coun­try. Mark was raised in Scot­land be­fore mov­ing to Springville, so we met with his old school friends and trav­eled to the very north of Scot­land for beau­ti­ful beaches and small vil­lages. We also made our way to the west coast and were amazed by the tall, un­usual rock for­ma­tions at Isle of Skye.

Next, we are head­ing to Nepal in mid-Oc­to­ber to trek in the Hi­malayas, and will spend the fol­low­ing four months in South­east Asia be­fore con­tin­u­ing to the Pa­cific and South Amer­ica. To follow the ad­ven­tures, visit oneworl­ and on In­sta­gram @oneworl­doneyear.

Mark John­ston / Oneworl­

Brit­nee John­ston takes in the view from above the Old Man of Storr on the Isle of Skye, Scot­land.

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