Vagabonding Case Study: Gary Misner

Gary Misner

Age: 24

Hometown: Long Island, NY

Quote: “Vagabonding taught me how to act, gave me an open mind to expect the unexpected.

How did you find out about Vagabonding, and how did you find it useful before and during the trip? I first heard about Vagabonding while on a trip in Puerto Rico, I met a man who was a vagabond all his life an found him interesting. He suggested i should read it and i did, shortly after i was on my first “real” trip using references from the book along the way. Most importantly it taught me how to act, gave me an open mind to expect the unexpected.

How long were you on the road? About a year and a half on and off.

Where all did you go? Went through eastern europe, around the USA , Central America.

What was your job or source of travel funding for this journey? Before I began i had made a few investments that funded me throughout the trips, I started a mens accessory line Peoples Bailout that gave me more of an automated cash flow, and i worked odd jobs where ever i could.

Did you work or volunteer on the road? No i did not.

Of all the places you visited, which was your favorite? Italy was my favorite maybe not for geographical reason but because i met my family there that i’ve never spoken to. They took me in and it was great.

Was there a place that was your least favorite, or most disappointing, or most challenging? Maybe Mexico, I found it hard to get away from tourist traps, and dirty cops.

Did any of your pre-trip worries or concerns come true? Did you run into any problems or obstacles that you hadn’t anticipated? Of course but they were not as bad i thought. I found out they never are. Stomach aches, walking way too long, Language barriers, Depression, it just becomes apart of the journey.

Which travel gear proved most useful? Least useful? Most useful definitely a carry on back pack. Least useful , the clothes in it.

What are the rewards of the vagabonding lifestyle? It opened my mind to many new things, and really changed the way i live when I’m “home”.

What are the challenges and sacrifices of the vagabonding lifestyle? Loneliness, trying to explain why your doing what your doing.

What lessons did you learn on the road? That people are wonderful, 90% of the people ive met or asked for help genuinely were great people no matter what race or culture. It gave me trust in people again, and taught me how to have fun with little or no money. Made me realize the stuff cluttering my apartment was just stuff!

How did your personal definition of “vagabonding” develop over the course of the trip? I realized that many places i was going people were looking for the same thing, but nobody knew what that thing was. I think it started to develop at Casa Robino in amsterdam when i was staying in a house full of vagabonds. Different personalities with the same goal, To experience life.

If there was one thing you could have told yourself before the trip, what would it be? Just to keep an open mind and go with the flow. If you find yourself bored on another train or bus look beside you im sure that person is just as bored.

Any advice or tips for someone hoping to embark on a similar adventure? Just do it, the timing is never right. Keep all of your perception of a place in the back of your mind for emergencies but other then that be clear. Don’t over pack! Clothes are cheap if you really need them. Get ready for the time of your life.

When and where do you think you’ll take your next long-term journey? I would love to explore South America and really see for myself what it has to offer. Would love to do this on a dirt bike.

Twitter: garymisner Website:

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Posted by | Comments (1)  | March 23, 2011
Category: Vagabonding Case Studies

One Response to “Vagabonding Case Study: Gary Misner”

  1. Cee Says:

    Wow…nice to have learned what and who is important(or “stuff” being unimportant) in this life before you turn 50!! I hope you enjoy many more vagabond adventures. Safe travels and wonderful memories!