Mine would be a human-powered adventure, yet I wanted to travel in style. I began a search for the ideal mode of transportation, which somehow led me to the recumbent tricycle.
The trike would be my company on the five- to-ten-year adventure I am calling the JaYoe World Tour. “JaYoe” is a take on the Chinese phrase “加油,” meaning “to add fuel.” Combining my love of travel with my passion for video production, I am recording life along the way, producing daily video blog episodes on YouTube to share with the world.
Like any monumental undertaking, it was not without its ups and downs. Three months into the start of the tour, back in 2014, a truck struck me from behind breaking some bones, trashing my trike and gear, and setting me back. You can’t keep a motivated traveler down for long, so once I got back on my feet I was ready to get back on the trike.
Since then I have re-equipped myself and checked off a few top line bucket list destinations, such as visiting elusive and mysterious North Korea and climbing Mount Everest. I have been on the road through China and Korea and now traveling through Japan.
Living in China for the past eight years, I have had the ability to test my mettle cycling on some truly rough roads, avoiding screaming heavy trucks, oblivious E-bikes and achieving an amazing situational awareness in a chaotic country. I brought this awareness to Japan, and am having an interesting dilemma—I’m over prepared. I’ve found Japanese people are generally more courteous, respectful and accommodating than in China. It’s a welcome dilemma of course, freeing my mind to take in the natural beauty, record the world around me, and ash a big smile to the polite passers-by.
Before arriving in Japan, I had cycled Korea from Seoul to Busan, then around the island of Jeju. I arrived to Japan via a ferry from Busan to Osaka, then cycled for two days across the narrow waist of the country to Maizuru where I boarded another ferry to Otaru, the beautiful port town on Japan’s northern island.
I am currently in Hokkaido, preparing to head south through the archipelago until I reach Okinawa. I’ll let life, intuition and the people I meet dictate my path from there. I like to travel freely, without many defined rules. Major milestones can shift, and between them plans can change with the input of enthusiastic locals or fellow travelers.
After leaving Japan, I will continue south to Australia, then change course to Norway, turning south again to the southern tip of Africa, then hitch a ride on a freighter to South America where I will take a sideline trip to Antarctica. Returning to South America, I will head north through Central America and onto the United States, ending in Los Angeles.
As I travel, my videos provide me with an in nite workload while I try to capture the story of life on the road. My eyes are peeled in a nonstop pursuit for angles, narratives and characters. In many ways, producing my videos makes me a better traveler, looking at things with a sense of purpose and hopefully a deeper perspective.
The modest goal of my videos has been to reveal the true nature of the world. With seemingly in nite information at our ngertips, many people still have a fear of the world outside their front door. I hope to do my part to dispel that fear, revealing that kindness and beauty far outweigh evil and hate. Today, my YouTube channel has reached 28,000 subscribers, and nearly every week I receive messages thanking me for giving someone a chance to appreciate the world from a new perspective. That’s all the motivation I need to keep going.
As a side project, I hope to meet other YouTube creators as I travel, and have reached out to people in Japan in hopes of meeting and learning more about them. I have created a series I call “VLOGGER 1-ON-1,” an interview-based series where I meet and talk to fellow vloggers, learning what inspires them and where they intend to go in the future.
If you would like to follow my travels, or if you have an interesting idea or place to visit, you can find my YouTube channel at “JaYoe Nation” or visit the JaYoe World Tour website.