All Systems Are Go!

Posted by on Dec 18, 2014 in Uncategorized | No Comments


My name is John Hollister, and I would like to dedicate this site to my parents for taking me along on their travels and instilling the thirst for adventure that lives on in me today.

October 17, 2014, is the day I made the decision to travel the world for an extended period of time. It was a year ago when I seriously considered the option, but I started to question leaving a well-paying job. I worked for the world’s largest watch seller, but I began to realize the exorbitantly priced watches we were selling and the money I was making were not worth my most precious asset.
Time, I felt quite ironically, was dripping out my sleeve, and in the cheesy parlance of the copywriters in my company, at 57 years old, it was “Time To Go”. I am grateful to the three young ladies (shout out to the m&m’s) who made my last eight months at work tolerable.

A little over a year ago I came across a story about the largest cave in the world being discovered in Vietnam. The pictures were breathtaking as I viewed them on my iPad at work. A decision was made then and there that I had to explore that cave. That dream is on the verge of becoming reality. Han Son Doong is 5 miles long and has its own weather system, as well as two jungles and a waterfall. The one-way ticket to Ho Chi Minh city and the Hon Son Doong expedition are paid for. All that is needed is to get into shape and hop on a plane. After checking out Cambodia and Laos for five weeks it’s off to the cave region of Phong Nha in Vietnam. There I will get to do something that less than 300 visitors have done thus far.

I’m going to have the opportunity to explore the Mt. Everest of caves without the extreme expense and potential loss of life that Everest entails. What a marvelous way to kick off this nomadic endeavor. It will surely inspire me to engage in many more as I continue my travels in the coming years.


Here I am with my beautiful daughter Dina right before walking her down the aisle to marry a swell guy named Steve. It was nice to get this taken care of before leaving, but I plan to make a yearly pit stop during the Christmas holidays.

The planning, choosing destinations, the selling off of surplus goods, the donations, the storage, the saving, the vaccinations are all done. When you get down to it, it was all just foreplay for the greatest love of my life. Travel and adventure are what it has all been about, and it’s what I am going to be doing for a long time to come. I am truly a travel zealot and have visited 35 countries thus far, and hope to visit at least 100 all tolled before I take the dirt nap. If I am diligent I should be able to tally up my goal before I hit sixty-four years of age.

To anyone out there who feels they may be past it, believe me, it’s not over until you say it is. There are blogs out there by vagabonds in their 80’s so there’s really no excuse. One just needs to go at their own pace. Adventure can be an extremely low-impact, relaxing endeavor. Remember one size does not fit all. There are a plethora of great resources on the web that can aid in removing the obstacles in your path. It boils down to doing some research and getting out of your own way.

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