Seeing the World by Truck

Writer and trucker Tim Barton reports he has completed the first leg of his very unique globetrot, the “Nomad World Truck Tour,” having return to the United States after travelling by commercial vehicle through Russia, parts of Eastern Europe, Spain, Scandinavia, Africa and South America. It’s all part of what Barton regards, understandably so, as the adventure and challenge of a lifetime.

The tour is being sponsored by Volvo Trucks North America, Inc., Michelin North America, Inc. and Shell Lubricants (Rotella). Other partners include Pocket Mail, Trucker Buddy International and The Teaching Company. Barton is also testing equipment from Power Line Vision Systems and Attention Technologies along the way.

It works like this: sponsor Volvo has made arrangements through its worldwide dealer network for Barton to travel with working commercial drivers in their Volvo trucks, along their usual routes, hauling their customary loads.

Most of the truck dealers have spoken English, Barton notes, most of the truck drivers have not. “After about fours months on the road, I’ve learned to just do my best to intuit meaning from all the available clues, to try to ‘feel’ what people mean when I can’t understand a word,” Barton says. “Most of the time, it has seemed to work.”

Barton is back in the USA for a few weeks before heading out again to complete his journey along roads through the United Kingdom, India, Asia and elsewhere. “While the road around the world is discontinuous, it provides a link,” he notes. “Fragile though it may be, it is a link nonetheless.”

To read a longer report on the tour thus far, visit our sister site,

Barton himself is hard at work on a book about his journey. To read a sample of his stories, go to the tour’s official site,

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