Former BU student-athlete publishes book about 70,000-mile trip around the world
Eric Giuliani, ’01, quit his consulting job to swap ideas without flying around the world
After serving as an education advisor for six years, former Binghamton University men’s basketball player Eric Giuliani realized in ’01 he didn’t want to settle. The slow burn of his job engulfed him and when he was driving home one day he decided to quit his job to travel the world. On the way he filmed, photographed and wrote and finally published a book about his travels. “Sky’s the Limit: One Man’s 70,000 Mile Journey Around the World” was released on March 6th.
“I think people enjoy a routine and I’m certainly a routine person, but there was just so much monotony,” said Giuliani. “I literally had a script and you had to do your workouts and teach and say the same thing from the script almost every day, so I even made the same jokes at the same time every day.”
But Giuliani did not give up immediately. After making the decision to travel the world, he used the last year of his job to study photography, videography, and writing skills at his local community college.
Previously, his interest in travel began when he was a student at the BU. As a former member of the university basketball team, Giuliani remembers looking out the window on the way to the games.
“My love for traveling grew out of all the long bus trips we’d do,” said Giuliani. “We’d be playing in New Hampshire, New Jersey. We played in Florida once. I really had the feeling that I just enjoyed the camaraderie with my teammates and played almost more, if not more than basketball, on the bus and on the street. “
He chose Cape Town, South Africa, as a base and flew there. This was the first and last time Giuliani used an airplane in his three-year journey. He used public transportation almost exclusively to cover all seven continents, using cargo ships to get across the Pacific and Atlantic and a cruise ship to get to Antarctica. Not using air travel proved difficult at times as Giuliani was in Uganda when warnings of terrorist activity were received, but he was determined to stick with his decision.
“There is a terrorist group called Al-Shabaab who sadly attacked and killed 140 people at a university called Garissa University in Kenya, and I had to take a bus straight through that region this week,” Giuliani said. “It wasn’t just the threat anymore, there was actually violence… that was a really crucial moment when I could have said you know what? I will forget that; I will only fly to Ethiopia. ‘I was pursuing my dream of making it around the world, but at that point it really became a mission. “
Giuliani didn’t have much money to travel, so he used a barter system for the entire three years and never had to pay for a hotel room.
“Before I left, I emailed every hotel in Cape Town and had this crazy offer that I didn’t think anyone would take,” said Giuliani. “I offered to take photos and a film of their hotel – their rooms, their restaurant, their pool – in exchange for room and board for the week. I had no experience with it; My portfolio consisted only of practice shots on the beach. “
Giuliani emailed a hundred Cape Town hotels, and the next day three hotels replied and accepted his offer. He used this technique for the remainder of the trip and there was at least one hotel in every city that accepted the offer.
During his trip, Giuliani created a travel blog called Travel Tall and decided that he wanted to try and write an on-going book while traveling, with each post flagged as a chapter. When Giuliani returned to the US, he turned all of these blog posts into his new book, Sky’s the Limit: A Man’s 70,000 Mile Journey Around the World, which was available on Amazon earlier this month.
“I always say [“Sky’s the Limit: One Man’s 70,000 Mile Journey Around the World”] is like “Eat, Pray, Love” meets Bear Grylls, so it’s like that inner journey of “Eat, Pray, Love”, not really spiritual, but in a sense there are some spiritual overtones and it’s like that soul searching Find You mixes with Bear Grylls who is that type of survivor, ”Giuliani said.
Since Giuliani quit his job, he has gathered more than 40,000 followers on Twitter and Instagram. Taking this step was a big step for Giuliani, but he doesn’t regret it. He confronted what he was really curious and passionate about in life and urges everyone to do the same.
“Write down anything you are curious about,” said Giuliani. “I think the word curiosity is really important and I would just start following the things that you’re really curious about. Maybe they lead to nothing, or maybe to something, and they lead to a deeper dream or experience that you didn’t even know you were looking for. “