The Yellow Envelope, by Kim Dinan, Sourcebooks, Inc, 2017, 341 pages, yellow envelope included at back. ISBN-13: 978-1-4926-3538-3
Most people get married because they want to “spend their life with” their spouse. Yet they work separate jobs, have at least some separate friends, separate hobbies, and spend eight or more hours a day apart from each other. They grow to dread the loss of their independence and find that by the time retirement arrives they hardly know the other person anymore.
But what if, instead of the regular course, you plotted your own course?
What if you and your spouse took off on an around the world trip, with a starting date and location, and then who knows? What would happen to your relationship with non-stop togetherness? Would you grow stronger or fall apart? Kim Dinan had the opportunity to find out when she told her husband that she wanted to quit her job, travel around the world, and become a writer.
It sounds so romantic, who doesn’t want to escape it all?
Live like a free spirit? The reality was at times better than she had expected, and at other times, incredibly disappointing. And then there was the twist. Rather than just an adventure, her friend gave her a gift and a challenge. It was a yellow envelope full of money with three conditions: “Don’t overthink it, Share your experience, Don’t feel pressured to give it all away.”
The Yellow Envelope is Kim’s memoir of her travels, trials and experiences travelling the world, navigating her relationship with her husband, navigating a world that is at times drastically different from anything she was familiar with, and ultimately, getting to know herself and live her dreams.
The Yellow Envelope, Not a Highlight Reel
Rather than just a highlight reel of all that went well, Kim allows us to see the truth, the good, the bad and the ugly of travelling with someone you love. As if the stress of travelling wasn’t enough, Kim and her husband, also had to ask themselves if this person, or this situation deserved some of the “yellow envelope money.” Yet another point of discussion, or dissention. What is it like to constantly judge the world around you and ask yourself whether it deserves your help?
When their relationship starts to strain, she and her husband are faced with many choices and decisions. I found it revealing and vulnerable when she shared their struggles openly and honestly. I thought she did a really good job explaining what she was thinking and feeling, moment by moment. She revealed her decisions as they happened and as a reader, I felt like I was right there with her. As a world travel memoir, I really enjoyed this book. I enjoyed the way that she described the countries and locals that she visited, as well as the detailed descriptions of their adventures. I deeply appreciated that she took us along on her emotional journey as well. That really took this book from travel blog to true memoir and emotional roller coaster.
Do You Want Your Own The Yellow Envelope Experience?
If you are thinking about or contemplating traveling the world with your spouse, read this book. Learn the lessons, and solve some of your issues before you leave. And at the same time, recognize that you will face your own relationship difficulties, yet never lose sight of the fact that you can always find ways to change the world.
Have you had your own “Yellow Envelope” experience, Kim Dinan invites you to share it www.facebook.com/yellowenvelopeproject
If you are looking for ideas to improve your own life, although, maybe without selling all your worldly possessions and leaving the country, you might like my 8 Corners of Life series, start here.