I have quite a travel bug. I was bit by the bug when I was young. For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to explore, adventure, seek, enjoy, find, experience, and see the world and its cultures. Travel invigorates, inspires, drives, motivates, and feeds me.
Growing up, my family would take a yearly vacation. From seeing moose in Montana to riding horses in Wyoming, from watching the tide go out in Maine to spending a week on a houseboat in Kentucky, my parents made sure to give my brother and I so many life experiences through travel.
During high school, my family and Grammy hopped on plane and landed in Ireland where we stayed at my great aunt and uncle’s cottage on Dingle Bay on the west coast of Ireland. Waking up to views of the ocean, meeting locals at the pub, and driving to all of the sights made me even more hungry for travel.
In college, my love for photography grew by leaps and bounds. One thing led to another and I found myself traveling throughout England, Scotland, and the Czech Republic studying photojournalism with other students on my study abroad program. Being in a place where I didn’t know anybody taught me so much and opened my eyes to other cultures.
When I graduated from college, I entered the public relations world where I was offered the opportunity to be an interim communications manager for one of our clients in England. Once again, I was thrown into an environment where I didn’t know anyone, had to drive on the other side of the road, and find my way throughout the duration of the stay as I met friends, went grocery shopping, learned how to enjoy dining on my own, and work in a fun yet challenging workspace. Needless to say, I loved it.
When my husband and I got married, we decided that after planning a wedding for a year, all we wanted to do was relax on a beach, sip cocktails, and enjoy each other’s company while we splashed in the ocean and slept in a hammock. So, we packed our bags and headed to Jamaica where we were met by the friendliest people and truly enjoyed an incredible honeymoon.
Fast forward throughout the years and, thanks to a job in communications, I’ve been traveling all throughout the country over the past five years as I attend business meetings, conferences, and events. From New York to California, Florida and even to Ireland again, words cannot even begin to express how thankful I am for all of the opportunities that have crossed my path.
But, I’m hungry again. Yes, I’m craving a trip. Ever since I had my son, my travel has dwindled as I try to balance being a full time work-at-home/stay-at-home mom. Yes, we have our occasional trips to Michigan to visit with family and friends. But, my travel bug definitely has a scratch that needs to be itched. Why? Because travel feeds my soul.
And that became all too apparent this past May. During my brother-in-law’s wedding, my sister-in-law had a Henna Artist who spent an evening drawing beautiful images on the wedding attendees’ hands. When it was my turn, I was a bit nervous since I have never had Henna on my hands.
I sat down, told her to do whatever she felt like drawing, and watched her depict who I am on my hands. She told me that I wasn’t a “girly girl” and that I’m not into colors or sparkles. She couldn’t have been more spot on.
We had a small amount of chitchat because I was so intrigued by her technique. When she was done, I took one look at my hands and quickly noticed that my design was unlike any other in the wedding party. The clean lines, order, and organization … she completely understood who I was and I only knew her for five minutes.
While she was drawing art on other hands, all of us in the room couldn’t help but notice that she had a gift. Not only was she an incredibly talented Henna artist, she was also able to dive into soul’s and read people. She was able to extract so much out of people all throughout a simple conversation. Some people were crying. Others were filled with joy. And me? I was in awe of her sheer talent and capabilities.
As she was packing up and leaving the room, she walked by me and, with one foot out the door, she turned back to me, looked me straight in the eye, and said, “You need to travel more.” With shock filling my body, my sister-in-law excitedly told her that I love to travel. I said, “Yes, I just had a baby so I haven’t been traveling as much.” She simply replied, “You need to travel more. I can tell you are passionate about it.”
And that I do.
Travel feeds and fills my soul.
Travel keeps me motivated.
Travel opens my eyes and gives me a breath of fresh air.
Travel teaches me so much not only about the world but about myself.
Travel provides so much to my personal development.
I will be forever grateful and thankful for all of the trips that I have taken both personally and professionally.
My husband and I have been talking about potential trips in our near future, as well as in the distant future. Talks about Italy, Ireland, and even stateside places like going back to wine country in California or New Orleans fill our travel conversations.
He hasn’t received a huge bite by the travel bug like myself but he definitely has a small bite and he’s starting to get there. I couldn’t be more excited to continue to live our lives together and experience the world with each other. We can’t wait to travel more with our son and introduce him to the importance of travel.
What’s your favorite travel destination?
Photos via Unsplash.