A comic strip about travelling around the world with a van???
Sometimes breakdowns occur for a reason. In August 2014 we were in the northern tip of Newfoundland, with a broken torsion bar in the land of very far away, when a guy arrived with his overloaded motorcycle. Cemil Alyanak was travelling from Washington D.C., and got surprised with our story of 14 years non-stop living in the road. We had dinner and he left the following day with a bug in his brain.
One month later he wrote to us with a brilliant idea: ‘everybody has done books and documentaries about travelling, but no one has ever done a comic strip. Would you be interested? I’ve read your books, and I’m sure you’ll have a lot of funny stories to share.’ We loved the idea.
He had a friend, Mike Cucurullo, a very good illustrator from Boston, and we started to have fun in very long Skype conversations.
All started with a crazy idea. Again.
On year 2000, Pablo Rey (Buenos Aires) and Anna Callau (Barcelona) quit their jobs and rented out their apartment in Spain to travel around the world during four years. Four somehow turned into fifteen. The couple, living out of their small 4WD van, a.k.a. La Cucaracha, has travelled more than 220,000 miles, passing through 60 countries, with no end in sight.
After leaving Southern Europe, these committed nomads have driven through the Middle East, Africa —from North to South, the entire American continent —from Tierra del Fuego (at the Southern tip of Patagonia) to the Arctic Ocean in Alaska, before settling in for a couple of years of discovery in North America. Getting here was no small feat. They crossed the Atlantic Ocean from South Africa to Argentina in a fishing vessel, survived elephant and Kalashnikov attacks in Africa and paddled down an Amazon river in a 6-log wooden raft. Their engine broke down in the middle of the Sudanese Sahara and froze at 15,000 feet during a very cold winter in the Bolivian Altiplano, and that’s just scratching the surface.
In 15 years they have met, shared food and stayed with some truly amazing and hospitable people. Whether in a house, hut, tent or under the stars, the take away is the same, in whatever culture, remove the dogma and indoctrination and you realize that we are all the same, one big human family living in a beautiful, albeit fragile, Earthly home.