Welcome to The Slow Road!
We’re Chris and Melissa. We’ve have been partners in life and travel since 2003. We lived together in Washington, D.C., for five years before, in 2007, we sold our house and most of our possessions, quit our jobs, and set off to see the world. For the next year and a half, we traveled with our backpacks in Western Europe and Central America, recording our impressions here in words and photos. Now, after a five-year stint back in Washington, we’re resuming our travels—this time on the other side of the world, in Asia!
Chris Howlett was born in 1963 and grew up in the north central United States (Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania). After graduating from college with degrees in environmental studies and ancient Greek, she went into journalism (makes sense, right?). Chris worked as a reporter and copyeditor for several newspapers and for a magazine about African rural development. She later spent many years as an editor at the U.S. Congressional Budget Office, helping government economists learn to write in regular English so other people could understand them. She is now working as a freelance editor. Chris is happiest when traveling, exploring art museums, learning about history, hiking in beautiful places, watching birds and other wildlife, snorkeling, reading a good book, listening to classical or Celtic music, and savoring good food.
Melissa Kuhnell was born in 1975 and grew up near Cincinnati, Ohio. She has university degrees in biology, linguistics, and science journalism, which makes her perfectly qualified to interview bilingual bacteria. Melissa has worked in laboratories, as a veterinarian’s technician, and as an editor for a magazine about chemistry. For the past several years, she has been working as a freelance editor, primarily of scientific papers and documents written by non-native English speakers. She loves to travel, cook, take photographs, snorkel, read, play with cats, play with art supplies, and immerse herself in new projects. Her favorite places include snow-topped mountains, coral reefs, and anywhere with abundant markets full of fresh produce. Melissa is the photographer and webmaster of the pair, and Chris is the writer.