UPDATE (April 25):
This update pertains to the blog post below, in which we questioned whether or not we should continue with our goal of driving through China to produce a book about driving the Silk Road. We want to thank all those who spoke up with supportive comments about our plan. The hundreds of you who provided us with motivational words and insight here and on our Facebook page helped us realize that our chosen method of making it happen is a just and worthy one. There’s a great story to be told, and we’re determined to tell it. So after having slept on it, read through each and every one of your comments, and pondered it throughout a long drive up Thailand’s East coast, we’ve come to a decision.
We’re going to push hard and try to make it happen. It’s the spirit we started with and it’s the spirit that we’ll maintain until we finish. If we’d done what the armchair experts said we should have done, we’d still be sitting at home.
So that leaves 23 days from today to reach our funding goal.
In our next blog post, you’ll read about a guy we met named Hairi. After spending a couple of days with this man, who lived in a tent in the jungle with his family, we were really inspired. His life has been a continuous string of achievements that didn’t seem possible for someone without any money who lives in a tent in the jungle. We were so inspired by Hairi that we decided to choose our biggest barrier – driving through China – and try whatever we could think of to make it a reality. We never intended to drive through China due to the high cost, but we figured, with enough determination, anything is possible.
As you saw in our last blog post, we decided to devote all of our energy over the coming months to driving the Silk Road through China and Central Asia, and then stopping in Turkey to write a book about it. We thought that crowd sourced funding would be a good way to do it, because it would allow lots of people to contribute in small amounts, and then benefit at the end.
On the first day of our project, we raised 10% of our goal. By day five we were at 25%. Now, going into day six, we’re nearing the 30% mark. The feedback we received from our friends and readers was 98% positive, but there were a couple of people who saw it as a way to get other people to fund our vacation. This caught us off guard, because we never even considered that point of view. The way we saw it, we decided to break from our trip, and do an actual “project”, complete with extensive planning, note taking, professionalism, a deadline, and deliverables.
What we didn’t expect was that, as the word spread beyond our friends and readers, there would be such a high degree of hatred aimed at us. No longer was our project seen as a “project”, but as a couple of spoiled kids trying to get strangers to pay for our vacation. This is the entirely wrong message. And being that we’re positive people who like to be surrounded by positive thoughts, people, and feelings, we’re feeling a little unnerved by the hate.
It’s evening here in Thailand, and Sheena and I are going to sleep on it for the next couple of nights. We’ll be thinking about whether driving through China and Central Asia is worth the negative baggage that will come along with it. In the morning, we’ll either decide to keep the project up, or can it and go back to our original plan of shipping to India, and then shipping around the Middle East.
We’ll let you know.