Until 330 BC, when Aristotle provided evidence of a spherical earth, people thought the world was flat. If this was the case our trip would either end with us driving off the edge into infinite space or we would have to drive back the way we came. There is something deeply fascinating and appealing about driving all the way around the world; finishing where we started, yet never re-tracing our path.
I have always loved maps, spending hours pouring over atlases, city plans, marine charts and off-road routes.
There is something so simple, rewarding and romantic about navigating yourself from A to B. You will never find us slaves to the patronising tones of a ‘Tom-Tom’ (although in Andy's case of living on an island 9 miles long it’s not exactly necessary). To visualise and plan our epic “around the world in 800 days” expedition I purchased a globe. My first. The enticing, spherical, ‘tea-stained’ object which looks like it was procured from Indiana Jones’ study brings the journey planning to life. It was actually from pottery barn. That’s irrelevant. Our journey has now taken on another dimension.
Circumnavigation, literally "navigation of a circumference" refers to travelling all the way around an island, a continent, or the entire planet Earth. The Guinness Book of Records and the adventurers’ society (i made the second one up, but it’s something like that) have made some rules stating what qualifies as an official circumnavigation of the world... A true circumnavigation of the Earth must: start and finish at the same point, travelling in one general direction, reach two antipodes, cross the equator, cross all longitudes and cover a minimum of 40,000km..'
For example, our respective antipodes are; the Pitcairn Islands in the Pacific (Dubai, UAE- Emma) and Dunedin, New Zealand (St Peter Port, Guernsey- Andy).
There are still associations of ‘flat earthers’ out there who refuse to believe the planet is round. In the 1870s, Christian polemicist John Hampden wrote numerous works about the Earth being flat, and described Isaac Newton as "in liquor or insane" and astronomers as “demented stargazers”. I wonder what he would say about Andy and I today.