Reichart Ramblings
The Thoughts & Travels of Shane & Amanda Reichart

Travel Beginnings

Aug 7, 2023 - Amanda Reichart

Traveling is complicated! Not so much for my husband Shane maybe, as he has been doing it for years and has it down to a science. Seriously! Shane has a place for everything in his backpack, which by the way, is all he takes to travel around the world. A backpack! And which unbelievably enough, is all I am also taking. One single backpack for 3 months of traveling!

The few clothes I could pack.
(Some "delicates" not pictured.)

At first, I told Shane there was no way that was happening: I am a woman, and women need things! We have products, outfits and shoes! I certainly would not consider myself high maintenance, but can you imagine getting all your shampoo, conditioner, hair product, face creams in one tiny bag? What about finding clothing that is comfortable enough to go hiking in, warm enough to survive Iceland, cool enough, not to mention, appropriate enough for Uganda? Then, throw in a wedding with cocktail attire for good measure! It took a lot of planning, but after realizing it would cost hundreds maybe over a thousand dollars to take a carry-on not to mention the fact that all that luggage needs to be carried around to 13 countries, I decided I could make do with just a personal item bag. So, after much research, re-packing and promises from Shane we could buy things we need along the way, I packed one single bag and off we went!

Honestly, I wish it was that simple! Because while I was packing that one bag, we were also packing up our whole apartment and selling (or forcing people to take things) that didn’t make the cut to go to North Carolina. It was stressful and emotional. We were leaving our first home together, and everything felt very unknown. I was thankful Shane has traveled many times before and that we have traveled together quite a bit already, but the roller coaster of emotions was real! In Shane’s words, “We should really keep track of your, ‘Everything is okay, everything is good.” to ‘Nothing is okay!’ ups and downs!” I’m not sure I want that comparison! Through the process there were prayers, tears, dreaming and laughter and I don’t see that changing as the trip continues.

There were two moments that were so cool to see God show up: The day we were moving out and the day before we were flying out. We had sold most of our big items, but we were left with only a week to sell everything else. Meanwhile, we were trying to time everything so we weren’t without important items like a bed long before we needed to leave. It was tricky! On the day we needed to move out of our apartment, we still had a coffee table, a bookshelf, a kitchen table with four chairs, a microwave, an air fryer and two night stands to sell! We were supposed to be out by 5pm but had a bit of a grace period until 6pm. At 4:30pm we sold the last of it when two people came at the same time to buy the coffee table and pick up the table, chairs and nightstands, which by that point we were giving away for free! We were so thankful it all disappeared that day and were amazed by God’s timing!

On the night before leaving the US, with all our belongings packed and our cars full of the many things we planned to store in there that don’t need to be temperature-controlled, we were just putting the final few things into storage when Shane realized there was moisture in his car. Because he has a convertible, his car will occasionally leak, and we didn’t want to leave things in the car with trapped moisture. So, he opened it up to dry it out, but his passenger window got stuck down and wouldn’t go back up. This is not the first time it got stuck but it was the first time that even after several attempts it completely refused to budge. Eventually, at 9pm we realized our only option was to unload his whole car, in darkness, while knowing we were going to have to wake up early to leave the next morning. Why, you may ask, is this cool? Good question. Because God still showed up! He gave us the strength to get it done and the patience with each other we needed.

Bright and early August 2nd we began our journey by leaving for Tampa International Airport, on time. As we waited for our flight, Shane worked, and I purchased travel insurance. (Better late than never, right?) And in the sleepy stillness of an airport just waking up, Shane assured me that God will continue to show up during this trip in the moments when things work out perfectly and in the moments they don’t.

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Zuberanne18 - Aug 31, 2023 at 3:15pm
This is so much fun to read! God bless you in those moments of not knowing! That is for sure one area that God continues to work on in me but what a great blessing to have your husband with you to walk through it. I’m thinking, all the emotions of a girl/his wife are now his adventure LOL. I love it and love you both!
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