Heading to the World Meeting of Families in a VW bus . . . all the way from Buenos Aires

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Heading to the World Meeting of Families in a VW bus . . . all the way from Buenos Aires

Imag­ine, if you will, the ulti­mate road trip: Dri­ving the PanAmer­i­can High­way from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Mon­ter­rey, Mex­ico, and then steer­ing north­east to Philadel­phia, to arrive at the World Meet­ing of Fam­i­lies.

In a Brazilian-​made 1980 VW bus named Fran­cisca (after the Pope).

With your spouse and four kids (ages 3 to 12).

Over six months.

After you and your spouse quit your jobs.

I came across the whole incred­i­ble adven­ture on my Face­book feed, which led me to their Face­book page Amer­ica en familia, and from there went to their web­site, which has Span­ish and Eng­lish ver­sions, a crowd­sourc­ing page at Indiegogo, and of course, a Twit­ter page.

Who are these people?

From their Eng­lish about page,

We are Carmin, Mia, Dimas, Cala, Noël and Catire. An Argen­tinean fam­ily. We are not hip­pies but we love free­dom. We have a “nor­mal” life, work, school, home, good friends … A nice life. Like many, we have to make ends meet, we strug­gle to achieve our daily chores, we orga­nize trips and vaca­tions, and we try to live our faith with­out mak­ing “much trou­ble” … We like trav­el­ing, new places and meet­ing peo­ple. Rest­less souls, or “culo inqui­eto” as they say over here. We lived many years in Barcelona,​an amaz­ing expe­ri­ence that allowed us to make friend­ships that will last for­ever. A few months ago we decided that it was time to ful­fill a new dream.

More than sim­ply ful­fill­ing a dream, they are answer­ing a call­ing. They are liv­ing their faith every moment and every mile of their fan­tas­ti­cally inter­est­ing and quite per­ilous journey.

The kids are being home­schooled while get­ting a hands-​on edu­ca­tion on the geog­ra­phy, his­tory, cus­toms, and foods of the hemi­sphere. More impor­tantly, the lessons these chil­dren are learn­ing from this most inspi­ra­tional jour­ney will out­live the 20,000 mile trip.

The fam­ily has relied on the kind­ness of many along their trip, as you can see in their route page. One of their hosts explains,

As a Catholic, I like to meet peo­ple in whom faith is some­thing liv­ing, like a motor,” said Mar­tinez, who teaches Ital­ian at the Michelan­gelo Acad­emy and is a phi­los­o­phy pro­fes­sor at the Pop­u­lar Autonomous Uni­ver­sity of Puebla state. “When I saw the blog I thought it would be an enor­mous trea­sure to meet them. If I can pro­vide a grain of sand to help them along the way, even better.”

A VW bus (which they call a kombi) became their vehi­cle of choice because of its very sim­ple engine, with which all mechan­ics in South Amer­ica are famil­iar. Unfor­tu­nately, Fran­cisca is feel­ing her age and required major work while in Guatemala, strand­ing the fam­ily for 22 days. They are now back on the road, head­ing to Philly.

You can watch an inter­view (in Span­ish) on YouTube, but we need to get Pete to Philly so he can inter­view the Walk­ers, while he reports on the World Meet­ing of Fam­i­lies, so please hit Da Tip Jar.





Let’s get Da Tech Guy and the Walk­ers together!

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz on U.S. and Latin Amer­i­can pol­i­tics at Fausta’s Blog.

Imagine, if you will, the ultimate road trip: Driving the PanAmerican Highway from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Monterrey, Mexico, and then steering northeast to Philadelphia, to arrive at the World Meeting of Families.

In a Brazilian-made 1980 VW bus named Francisca (after the Pope).

With your spouse and four kids (ages 3 to 12).

Over six months.

After you and your spouse quit your jobs.

I came across the whole incredible adventure on my Facebook feed, which led me to their Facebook page America en familia, and from there went to their website, which has Spanish and English versions, a crowdsourcing page at Indiegogo, and of course, a Twitter page.

Who are these people?

From their English about page,

We are Carmin, Mia, Dimas, Cala, Noël and Catire. An Argentinean family. We are not hippies but we love freedom. We have a “normal” life, work, school, home, good friends … A nice life. Like many, we have to make ends meet, we struggle to achieve our daily chores, we organize trips and vacations, and we try to live our faith without making “much trouble” … We like traveling, new places and meeting people. Restless souls, or “culo inquieto” as they say over here. We lived many years in Barcelona, ​​an amazing experience that allowed us to make friendships that will last forever. A few months ago we decided that it was time to fulfill a new dream.

More than simply fulfilling a dream, they are answering a calling. They are living their faith every moment and every mile of their fantastically interesting and quite perilous journey.

The kids are being homeschooled while getting a hands-on education on the geography, history, customs, and foods of the hemisphere. More importantly, the lessons these children are learning from this most inspirational journey will outlive the 20,000 mile trip.

The family has relied on the kindness of many along their trip, as you can see in their route page. One of their hosts explains,

“As a Catholic, I like to meet people in whom faith is something living, like a motor,” said Martinez, who teaches Italian at the Michelangelo Academy and is a philosophy professor at the Popular Autonomous University of Puebla state. “When I saw the blog I thought it would be an enormous treasure to meet them. If I can provide a grain of sand to help them along the way, even better.”

A VW bus (which they call a kombi) became their vehicle of choice because of its very simple engine, with which all mechanics in South America are familiar. Unfortunately, Francisca is feeling her age and required major work while in Guatemala, stranding the family for 22 days. They are now back on the road, heading to Philly.

You can watch an interview (in Spanish) on YouTube, but we need to get Pete to Philly so he can interview the Walkers, while he reports on the World Meeting of Families, so please hit Da Tip Jar.





Let’s get Da Tech Guy and the Walkers together!

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz on U.S. and Latin American politics at Fausta’s Blog.