To some this word represents a life style, to others an ideal, and to yet another set of people, this word represents a longing. A strong yearning, yet not truly connected with reality. In my experience I have found this to be especially true with women. Many women I have had the pleasure to encounter listen enthralled to traveling experiences yet walk away with a “If only I was that brave”. I refuse to believe that solo traveling experiences should be limited on the bases of gender.
I also am not rich. I started working at the age of nine, and worked full or part time through college while living in the cheapest possible places. I have been able to travel so extensively in part because of my privilege, and in other part because of my hard work and budgeting. I hope to extend this blog into much more than a simple travel blog documenting my experiences. I want to get into the nitty and gritty of how exactly I am able to travel. Budgeting. Budgeting. Budgeting. I hope through my experiences I can help someone figure out a way to make their dream of traveling become a reality.
A bit more about me
Three years ago I, a 22 year old female, left my cozy life in Seattle/ Bellingham to start traveling the world. Contrary to popular belief I was not some brave pioneering woman. Instead I was someone who everyone assumed was going to travel more, and once I bought my ticket to South East Asia, I couldn’t back down. Even though a study abroad program the summer before had started a passion for exploring, I was still terrified of leaving to travel on my own with seemingly no safety net.
With what felt like borrowed time (wasn’t I supposed to go straight into the money-making world like the rest of the new graduates?) I traveled. I visited 12 countries in seven months: Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, and Colombia, and I came back a very different person.
All the cliches are true. Every corny, one liner spewing the life-changing, awe-inspiring, course-altering effect of travel was 110 % true for me. I learned a new language, experienced new cultures, met amazing people, and had my faith in humanity restored. I wanted to keep traveling and never come back ( well maybe after a few years I would tire of the constant moving around), but I had obligations. These obligations, a two year commitment to Teach for America South Louisiana, also turned out to be quite adventure.
Through Teach for America I wound up as a middle, then high school, Spanish teacher in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Ironically, it also felt like a completely different country. That chapter of my life has just now closed. I quit my job. Sold the stuff. And have just started traveling through Europe; my third long(ish) solo backpacking trip.
I still feel like the 21 year old girl who wrote “just trying to figure life out” on her original about me post. Who still has the incurable travel bug.