Disclosure: I received an e-book copy of this book for free in exchange for this review. All opinions are 100% my own.
What would you do if you were not afraid?
That is the very question one mother asked herself one day. What followed was a family journey of epic proportions – a journey of physical challenge, emotional endurance, teamwork, perseverance, and tremendous learning opportunities.
Would the journey be a dream come true – or a mother’s worst nightmare?
Together with her husband and young twin sons, Nancy Sathre-Vogel set off on her heavily laden bicycle to ride from one end of the world to the other – quite literally. Starting in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, on the shores of the Arctic Ocean, they pedaled south for three years. Theirs was a journey of over 17,000 miles through fifteen countries.
Changing Gears: A Family Odyssey to the End of the World is Nancy’s memoir about her experiences on the road. In it, she grapples with the challenges any mother does. When is it time to cut the apron strings and send your children out on their own? How does a mother respond when the tides change and the children are capable of caring for their parents? How does one handle the responsibility of caring for your offspring in unknown and unpredictable circumstances? How do we know we’re doing the best for our children?
Changing Gears is also a book that will encourage you to reach for the stars. It’s a story of discovery of self, of priorities, of accepting hardships, and of appreciating blessings. It will challenge you to look at your own life through a different set of glasses.
I have to admit, this was a long book. With saying that, I don’t think there was any way to cut out anything that was written and in some parts, I found myself wanting more information, more details, more stories about their travels.
In addition, I couldn’t stop reading it.
I loved hearing of the travels that they did, the things they experienced, and the lessons they learned living in the real world.
The author mentions a couple of times in the book about people who would bash them and tell them they were abusing their children and I have to say, I whole heartedly disagree with those people. I think that what they did was amazing! They’re kids were fully on board to take the challenge and they certainly handled it better than I would have! Not to mention, they learned and experienced so much more out in the real world than they would have in a class room! It actually gives me a tinge of jealousy that I would never be able to do a feat such as what they accomplished, but it certainly gave me the passion to follow my dreams and never give up!
One of my favorite parts of the book was the kindness and compassion that they received while traveling. The author called them “Road Angels” and they were exactly that. In today’s age, it is nice to see that there still are kind, giving people in this world.
Overall, I enjoyed this book and recommend it as a “good” read.
About the Author:
Nancy Sathre-Vogel is a 21-year classroom veteran who made the decision to leave her teaching career behind to travel the world on a bicycle. Together with her husband and twin sons, she cycled 27,000 miles throughout the Americas, including traveling from Alaska to Argentina. Now she lives in Idaho, pursuing her passions of writing and beadwork.
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