EDMAARHEEZE – Anyone who travels a lot can tell a lot. Roel Smulders puts that saying into practice: on his fortieth birthday he presented the book ‘Pyjama Pioneer’ with forty travel stories on Sunday.
He did that in Het Muziekhuis in Maarheeze, which he had decorated with travel photos, souvenirs and flags of countries he visited. And there are quite a few: besides many countries in Europe, he has already visited all continents.
After his studies he decided to first see something of the world. In 2006 – he was 23 years old at the time – he went to Ecuador to work as a volunteer. He never stopped traveling after that. He has now visited all parts of the world. “It has brought me an enormous wealth of knowledge and experience. Traveling gives you new insights, perspectives and it broadens your mind. I got to know a lot of new people from very different cultures”, says Smulders.
Picking apples in Australia
In order to pay for all those trips, he worked in temporary jobs – once back at home – to get money again for the next trip. As soon as the bank account allowed it again, he had flown again – almost literally. During his travels he also worked to pay for his stay in distant countries. For example, he picked apples and grapes in Australia, worked as a tour guide in Peru or in a restaurant on Curaçao. As the highlight of his many travels, he mentions a seven-month world trip from 2011. That was a trip where he was able to see the world wonders Taj Mahal and the Great Wall of China within a week. ,,And a few days later walked around Hawaii and then Hollywood. That was a lot of different cultures in a short time,” says the world traveler.
Many more travel plans
Although he has seen quite a bit of the world, he is still full of new travel plans. Although he has just returned from more than a month of Norway, where he worked at a resort with a camping site, he is already making new plans: he wants to explore Norway even more extensively, but also the Trans-Siberian Railway – a journey between Moscow and Beijing – is still on his bucket list, as are the Baltic States and parts of Africa. A number of travel experiences can be read in his book ‘Pyjama Pioneer’. The title refers to a pair of alpaca wool trousers, which he bought in Ecuador in 2006. “I always took those pajama-like pants with me on my travels,” says Smulders. He hopes to inspire readers with his book: “Dreams can be chased,” he says.
The book is for sale at 19.95 euros at the Sprankenis bookshop in Maarheeze or can be ordered via [email protected] or via www.boekscout.nl.
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