Today, the next installment of how I came to work with Dan Denning and Bill. (Catch up here and here.)

I pulled myself over the top of the ladder and tumbled into the wagon. I lay on the floor for about 10 minutes while my body recovered from the massive exertion of catching the moving train.

I was in a gondola. This is a railcar with no roof and low sides. I could peer over the sides if I stood up. It’s for transporting loose bulk materials like rocks or scrap metal.

This one wasn’t being used, although there was a lot of trash on the floor.

Night fell. We climbed into the western Sierras. It got cold, but I was cozy in my sleeping bag, rocking with the rhythm of the train.

By morning, we were passing orchards and cornfields and racing through little villages. A beautiful mist gave the landscape a dreamlike feel.

At one point, village kids jumped into my wagon. They were scavenging. They got a shock when they saw me.

That afternoon, we pulled into a large marshalling yard with dozens of tracks. The engineer burst the air brakes with a loud “pssssst.” I knew then that they’d be breaking up the train. So I bailed. And walked into town.

I was in Mazatlán, a port city on Mexico’s Pacific coast, opposite Cabo San Lucas.

“I wonder if I can catch a ship here?” I thought…

To be continued…

In the meantime, lots of excitement in the markets. Feels like something’s happening…

Gold rose about $70 last week. First, it hit a new six-year high. Then, it spiked another $40 in Asian trading, hitting $1,418 before settling back down. It’s at $1,411 this morning.

Markets tend to surge after they overcome a stubborn line of resistance. It took gold six years to pass $1,350. Thirty-six hours later, it was at $1,418.

The Dow was up 660 points last week, setting a new all-time high. It’s up about 2,000 points so far this month.

As gold is rising faster than the Dow, the Dow-to-Gold ratio is down a bit… to 19. Our mock million-dollar portfolio is up to $1,096,573.

Tom Dyson

P.S. The travels continue. Remember, our travels began one year ago. We sold all our belongings and hit the road with our three kids. We’ve crossed North America. We’ve been to Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. We’re currently in India.

Our plan is to circle the globe eastward. Next, we go to Southeast Asia, China, and Japan. Eventually, we will cross the Pacific Ocean and complete our trip in Vancouver.

I don’t know what we’ll do after that. We don’t have a home to go back to or a place to be. We’ll have to think of a new plan.

We’ve been staying in cheap Airbnbs, homestays, and hostels. We’re traveling mostly by bus and train. Right now, we are on the southwest coast of India – called the Malabar Coast – making our way to Bombay.

We left the place with the tilting floors and salt-water plumbing I told you about last week and checked into a new homestay. It was only a few miles up the road, so we hired a tuk tuk to take us there.

(It cost $1.20 for the ride. Probably a little expensive, but I didn’t haggle.)


Tom and family head to a new homestay