Although she’s always had a desire to travel, she didn’t know it was possible to make a profession out of it early on.
“I always assumed that you needed to work and save your money, and then in the States, your two precious weeks [off], use that, rather than have it actually become my lifestyle, my profession, and my career, so I guess I moved into it slowly, I got one assignment, then I got a third, then I got a fifth,” she says. “There’s no one more sure than I that the person I am and the way I see things and my respect for other cultures and other ways is purely a result of travel. I think it makes us better people inarguably in any one of a million different ways and it’s a win-win situation because you will have learned something, but then you come home and you have a different appreciation for everything.”
While she doesn’t often tend to revisit the same country as she’s aware there’s so much more left to see, one country she does go back to is Italy.
“I’m of Italian background, it’s the one country I return to the most readily,” she says. “I come back to Italy a lot because I think it’s just one-of-a-kind, it has more UNESCO World Heritage Sites than any other country, the food, the people, the people watching, the antiquities, the history, the music, the art, the design, you know. My mother is Italian, I’m a little biased, but not really, it’s the most revisited country in the world… It’s not hard to understand why because it has it all. I’ve been to enough other countries in Europe, not to mention the world, where it will have similar food or similar museums but not to the same degree and not to the same degree of variety. Yeah, I love Italy.”
As for what’s still on her bucket list, it’s New Zealand.
“I’ve been wanting to go to New Zealand since I’ve been six,” she says. “I’ve been to Australia a dozen times, but Australia is big and I always go for business obligations so then you don’t just tack on three days for a stopover in New Zealand because it’s deserving of something much more and I never have the time. It’s aways time and money. You have a lot of one and none of the other. Or none of either.”
But now that travel restrictions have set in, she finds herself wavering about where to go next.
“I’m determined to finally visit those places that for whatever reason keep getting sidetracked, but remain Wish List destinations I’ve always wanted to see. At the same time, being travel-challenged has made me nostalgic and grateful for those favourite memories and places I’d love to experience again.”
Notably, she’s not surprised to find she’s enjoying the break from being a frequent flyer and loving the imposed time spent at home.
“I can’t remember the last time I have had time to do things I’ve been putting off — I think April is a good month to take down my Christmas tree! I have many small work-related projects to keep me busy, and I embrace the time to keep in touch with friends here and around the world especially given the historic reason behind these forced restrictions, to reflect about things and generally feel less stressed and more rested.”