From an early age I’ve loved seeing the world. My first trip abroad was to Iran and London when I was a little girl. I don’t have many memories of the trip, but the pictures pull at my heart strings. Looking at the beautiful mosques and the clothing of the people on the streets always inspired me.
For my family, taking trips meant saving money and sacrificing. My mom was a single mom who started her own business so she could be there for me as I grew up. She loved to travel too, but didn’t always have the means. When I was young we took road trips to The Grand Canyon & Yosemite. One year we were even lucky enough to take a trip to Jamaica where we jumped off cliffs in to the beautiful blue ocean! I knew I wanted more of the world…
When I was in college, waiting tables, barely making ends meet, I saved my money to start exploring. I traveled to San Francisco, New York, Victoria (Canada), Chicago and Seattle. All these trips I went alone. I felt liberated while exploring. No one to tell me when and where I needed to be. The fantastic conversations with people who came from different cultures, different socio economic backgrounds, etc. I was able to explore freely and talk to so many world citizens. Travel grabbed my heart again.
After graduating from college I had my first salaried job (very exciting times!). One of my best friends from Chicago asked me to meet her in Germany and Spain for two weeks. That didn’t take much convincing for me! I booked my ticket and started my life traveling abroad. There was no turning back. I knew I was a world citizen and I found every chance I could to travel from that point forward.
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindnedness.” Mark Twain