Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Book... I can't get out of my head!

Welcome to my website. Firstly let me introduce myself. My name is Paul Wood, I’m from Adelaide, Australia and I’ve just turned 31. I’m going through a mid-life crisis. Whilst most of my friends are married with kids and have a degree and career, I have no idea what to do with my life. At times it feels like my life is somewhat of a mess. My future is one big unknown blur and my past has been full of excitement, travelling the world, and having a blast. There is one thing I do know however, and that is…I’ve got one hell of a story to tell!

I cannot move on with life until I write my story into a book as it’s been mentally and emotionally eating away at me for over 5 years now. So now it’s time, time to turn thoughts into actions and get this story out of my system and into a book, for the world to read.

My story:                                         *please check out the video below*

I’ve never held a decent job nor studied since finishing school 14 years ago in 1999. Earning minimum wage and having a thirst for global travel is a bloody hard combination to live up to. Over a nine-year period, I have travelled through 63 countries, on every continent in the world except Antarctica, and enjoyed five lengthy working holidays. I’ve had a variety of jobs in many countries over this time from cleaning toilets to being a stand-up comedian. My motto was:

 “I travel more than a millionaire and spend less money than a homeless man”

I had to be a complete and utter tight-ass to live this dream. I lived in cars, lived in forests hunting rabbits, slept on streets chained to poles, slept on beaches and in old ruins, anywhere to save a dollar. Eventually, living cheap, and roughing it out, along with my lust for adventure and danger, led to the most amazing times of my life. The cheaper I was, the more incredible the adventure became. These adventures became addictive and sent my parents grey.

Being frugal, not only led to these crazy adventures, but also the desire to earn a quick buck put me in many dangerous situations. I did a potential drug run down to the Greek Isles for Millionaires, flew to Germany to be a human guinea pig testing 2 heart drugs never tested together on humans, was almost scammed to smuggle $30,000 of gems from India to England, nearly killed myself bleaching my hair with pool chlorine and I even trekked across Scotland in mid-winter to save money on a tour. This is just an example.

Trouble seemed to follow me wherever I went. At times I felt I was destined to die at an early age, and I became oblivious to my own safety. I had an uncanny ability of finding myself at the wrong place at the wrong time. Whether it was being stuck in a harsh blizzard on top of the UK’s highest mountain, or caught in a monstrous isolated cave in the middle of the night with a dying torch, I always seemed to escape. I also attracted riots like magnets to a fridge door, had a window explode in my face on an Egyptian bus ride, and was forced by the Serbian Mafia to help them in their crimes.  I became addicted to the adrenalin rush of travel, which peaked when I talked my way into a Bolivian Prison, being shown around on a tour by prisoners.

Most of my stories occurred whilst travelling with my equally frugal and adventurous cousin, Mark. Together we pushed our limits of a “normal holiday” and turned it into an “adventure of a lifetime.” We used to say to each other “lets go where the wind blows us,” and we never knew where we would end up next. Whilst we only did one, yearlong trip together, the habits we developed stuck with me for many more crazy solo adventures over many more years.

The Book:

Above is only a sample of the extent of my stories, which I’ve had to cull down to fit into a 350-400 page book. After reading back on all my diary and blogs entries, I’ve decided to divide my book into my 20 best stories as chapters. Although this may change and the titles will certainly change, so far it consists of:

1)            THE BEGINNING:

A comical short chapter explaining how I went from having no plans to ever travel to 3 weeks later being in the USA with my first backpack on my back.

2)            SAN FRAN SHOWER:

As an 18 year old virgin, in the USA, my “Aussie” accent and a few beers, turned me into a hero overnight, fulfilling every mans dream of having an erotic shower with 7 naked beautiful girls as my innocence went down the plug hole.

3)            LIVING IN THE CAR & FOREST:

All the laughs of living in a car and forest for a month whilst waiting to get into a clinical trial and living for free hunting rabbits and experiencing true homelessness.


Within 1 crazy week- I lived in a forest, flew to Germany to test two heart drugs never tested on humans together before, and then became a stand up comedian live on the German radio.

5)            GREEK ISLES RUN:

May have done a drug run (being young and naïve) from Germany to the Greek Isles for some Millionaires we hardly knew and lived in their mansion for months on the Greek Isles.

6)            CHLORINE:

My cousin Mark and I almost killed ourselves bleaching our hair with pool chlorine trying to be cheap and wanting the surfer look.

7)            SPEED BOAT:

Sunk a brand new speed boat and almost did it again 2 weeks later after getting it fixed.

8)            CAVE STUCK:

Caught in a massive remote cave at midnight for hours in an isolated part of one of the Greek Isles having 3 torches die and the last one almost out of battery.

9)            MAGIC MUSHROOMS:

Trying ‘Space Cake’ and the worlds strongest ‘Magic Mushrooms’ at the same time on a Saturday night in the middle of Amsterdam is not the best idea I’ve ever had.

10)         EAT THE BURGER:

A drunken and armed Swedish Army ‘Boss’ forces my cousin and I to eat 4 straight Big Macs almost at gun point, after another crazy night of homelessness in Europe.

11)         POLICE LINE UP:

Trying to earn 10 pounds to do a Police Line up in Scotland sounded like a good idea. That was until I got picked as the armed robber!


Walking across Scotland to save money and see the country in the middle of winter seemed like a smart thing to do until we got caught out in bad weather, in a broken tent, with hypothermia settling in.


One of the world’s most dangerous mountains almost claimed our lives in a complete “white out” blizzard and -20°C weather, as we were surrounded by steep cliffs with no visibility and the darkness of night settling in.

14)         PHUKET SURPRISE:

Being heartbroken in Thailand was a tough time in my life, made even tougher by almost being raped by a lady boy after a drunken night out in Phuket.

15)         NEPAL RIOTS:

From Mt Everest in the morning, to being lost on a broken motorbike in the middle of Nepal, to almost being stoned to death in a riot then falling down an ancient pit causing internal injuries. The craziest single day of my life!

16)         INDIAN GEM SCAM:

Going with your gut feeling always pays off. After originally agreeing to smuggle $30,000 of gems from India to England, I changed my mind to the dismay of my scammers and saved myself from being ripped off thousands of dollars.

17)         EGYPT BUS FROM HELL:

A “what goes around comes around” funny story. A bus ride from hell and near head on  collision with another bus, ends up working out for the best, when our bus is written off after the windows explode in my face.

18)         SERBIAN MAFIA:

Having a nice cabin on an overnight train from Serbia to Bulgaria all to myself was going well. That was until the Serbian Mafia entered my cabin and forced me to help them smuggle thousands of cartons of cigarettes in the roof of the train.

19)         PERU RIOTS:

After I almost missed my overnight bus across Peru, the bus is stopped in a town in the middle of nowhere after rioters lit the sides of the road on fire, smashed glass on the road, and threw rocks at the bus. I’m forced to live like a fugitive hiding from rioters in a town for 2 days.

20)         SAN PEDRO PRISON:

Arriving in Bolivia was unplanned, and so was everything that happened there. From a dingy underground “coke den” I find myself illegally talking my way into a prison and being shown around by prisoners by tipping off the guards to let me in behind the prison bar gate.

Although I could have written many more stories, these are 20 of my most entertaining stories all in chronological order. All stories are 100% non-fiction however I will need to fictionalize them to a certain extent to create flow, and also stop myself from being sued for libel by protecting peoples identities.

The book is currently being written and will still be at least 2 years off being completed.  

Thank you for reading,

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Paul Wood

please email me at: paulwoodbook@gmail.com if you have any queries or comments

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