Where are you from?
I’m originally from Texas, but in 2003 I set off to become an international teacher. I started in Haiti, and wound up staying there for three years. Then I worked in Nicaragua for a year, then met a guy and followed him to Africa! We stayed there for five years together, and I taught school. So for 9 years I got to live overseas and have all my flights and living expenses paid for, and I visited about 60 countries along the way. Then I returned to the US for three years and taught school here, but we got the nomad bug again, so my husband (Chris) and I took a year off to backpack South East Asia. We took a cruise to Australia, stayed there for a month, then New Zealand for a month, and then we hopped up to South East Asia and backpacked around there for 8 more months. Finally we ran out of money and returned to work in the US at our “real jobs” for three more years, still traveling on our vacation days of course. Now, we have sold the house, stored our belongings, and are headed out in June for a year (or more) on the road!
What’s your favorite part of being a nomad?
My favorite part of being a nomad is seeing something new every day. A new type of food, a new variety of museum, a new street act, etc. It’s always changing when you’re on the road. I love seeing stilt dancers at a street fair in Croatia, and meeting historical re-enactors at Gettysburg. I thought the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb was really interesting, while visiting the Louvre is just timeless.
What’s your least favorite part?
My least favorite part is that I do get some travel fatigue after I’ve been at it a while. I have to give myself the okay to just take a day off, lay around in bed, read, watch Netflix. Then I’m back on the tourist trail once again. It’s important to remind myself that just like when I’m at home, sometimes I take a day off and chill out, or stay in on the weekend. You don’t have to be go, go, go all the time.
What’s your craziest story?
Probably my craziest story is of the time I was arrested in Angola (for driving without a license) and put in jail for a weekend. It was a tense 3 days but it all turned out okay, and looking back now it’s all pretty bizarre and funny. But at the time I was imagining it turning out a lot worse. The worst part was that I really didn’t want my mom to find out I had been arrested, but my friend had to go to my mom’s house to get a copy of my driver’s license to fax to us to get me out… so she wound up finding out. She was pretty mad at me! She still reminds me every time I go overseas to take my driver’s license and to not get arrested.
What’s next for you?
Next up for us is a 4 month road trip across the United States. We are leaving Washington DC, driving to Alaska, via Canada, and then going to Burning Man Festival in Nevada. On the way back to DC we’ll be visiting some US National Parks- hopefully the weather will be a little cooler in September and the school kids will be back in school, so less crowds. We’ll be dropping off the car with family in DC, and then in October we have one way tickets to Nepal. We plan on doing some trekking in Nepal, and then visiting the “world’s happiest country” (Bhutan). After that we’re spending the “winter” in India and from there…. well, I don’t really know! I don’t like to plan too much, because I’ve found being a nomad is a lot more fun when you can just go with the flow.