Travel and living abroad became a major component of my life purely by chance, and subsequently, changed the course of my life. I have worked as an onsite travel coordinator and city director, mostly in Italy, assisting students with their study and travel abroad experiences.
When I ask my students and travelers that I meet through work or travel about their travel experiences and what meant the most to them, I’ve never been told that it was laying on a beach or visiting a monument. The response is always something unique to that person, and no two responses have ever been the same.
Yet, our travel strategy is often a one-size-fits-all approach, to copy someone else’s experience. Someone’s trip that we saw on social media, or that we got a special deal on from a travel site. Joe Cummings is a pioneer in travel and travel writing who wrote the first Lonely Planet guide for Thailand in the early 1980s. He is an advocate for avoiding culturally insulated travel and is quoted about his guidebooks as saying, “the smaller towns and off-the-beaten-track places are getting less attention. It’s a market-driven approach; publishers look at what the other publishers are putting into competing guides, and they want the same coverage. There’s less incentive to be a maverick and do something different.”
The goal of my writing, photography and my own travels is to connect with people and cultures I might never have before, whether they be in the big cities or the small towns off the beaten path, and to interpret these experiences and share them with you, in the hopes that they might inspire you to take time before you book your next trip to consider: what are you passionate about? Is there something that you love that you could seek out in the places you visit? When I’m content to wander a city with my camera, without needing to check off a bucket-list, I discover the neighborhoods off the beaten path. This is how I fell in love with Venice and discovered its many corners tucked far, far away from the tourists in St. Mark’s Square.
The places we visit are as complex as we are, constantly evolving and reflecting current events, and are seeking to be understood as much as we are seeking out new experiences, and perhaps a better understanding of ourselves as we experience them. You’ll find my journey here in the many pages and images on the blog. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me, or follow along with the blog by leaving your email address. Thanks so much for visiting. I wish you many safe and passion-filled travels to come.