I N S P I R E D by Travel and Bravery

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Part of me has always been a little lost wherever I went.
Even if I’m physically within the familiar, my head is always elsewhere. Am I the only one that feels like this? Like something far away is always better and there’s always something more to go out and experience and learn?

Anyhow, my inner hippie and travel-junkie goes out to April, the lovely writer of Traveling Wanderer.

She sounds like someone I’d like to be friends with, for sure. Not just because we share the same favorite song (Hopeless Wanderer by Mumford & Sons). But because she just inspires me to keep on in pursuit of my dream life, and adventure on!

There seems to be no boundaries for her! She recently bought a VAN to accompany her on her travels, and she is certainly not afraid to travel alone as a woman.

I’m not sure if I will ever muster up this kind of courage, and take Europe or a Caribbean island alone, but I will absolutely keep following April on her journey and live vicariously through another daring and colorful woman.

She is not only great for having a blog that is a total joy to read, but she’s also one of those rare people who remembers where she came from and appreciates others’ journeys.

On twitter, I find her voicing opinions on how bloggers should support other beginner bloggers, and people should be more respectful of each other. She often starts follow trains, and reaches out to newby bloggers to support them.

If everyone was more like April in every field, the world would be a much, much better place to live. And many more people would accomplish great things, when met with the courage they need.

I think everyone should remember where they came from, and be compassionate to those still on the low points of their journeys (but that’s another post…ahem! *tries to remain calm and not send out a rant post*).

So thank you to her, for keeping a gentle heart.

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I personally believe that our difficulties tear open our hearts, clean out what’s dirty and dark, and leave behind a polished and glowing heart.

As a result of pain, when dealt with in the right way, we become gentler, and nicer. We begin to understand pain, and therefore others. We become forgiving, in wanting to be forgiven ourselves. We become compassionate, in needing that compassion ourselves. And we become considerate, hoping to be thought of ourselves.

April is the most wonderful example. Her backstory, aligned with who she has become, is truly a great inspiration.

She has had a challenging upbringing, which I only extend respect and appreciation towards, and has taken that and risen above it, becoming someone who lives out her dreams in the process.

I hope you’ll find those heaps of inspiration I found in her answers. Enjoy.

 

 


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-THE BLOG-

Travelling Wanderer is a blog that is filled with adventures whether it be camping outdoors, van life, travelling solo, and so much more. I share my adventures with my readers and hope to spark inspiration for them to go travelling for themselves. I am in my twenties, and I share my experiences of going against the norm of what society wants me to be. I quit my 9-5 job and dedicated my life to a travel and adventurous lifestyle full-time. When it comes to what my readers can expect from this blog is honesty. I am real when it comes to this lifestyle, and I want others to feel like they can achieve the same goals I have if they set their mind to it. 


-HOW IT STARTED-

I wanted a place to express my love for travel and have a place to document my adventures, so that is why I started this blog. The launching process was lonely since I only had a few readers at the time. I didn't know the importance of networking, so I stopped writing for a while since I didn't have much support behind the blog. In the beginning, the challenges were that I didn't have much help from friends or family. It wasn't something that I took seriously, so maybe they didn't either. This blog was only a place for me to express myself creatively. And a pro would be that I had finally found a platform to write again.


-HOW IT EVOLVED-

As a travel blogger, I think the defining moment was realizing that this was a lifestyle that I wanted. I shed my "normal" lifestyle in order to expand as a person and blogger. What is this "normal" lifestyle? Well, it's working an incredibly difficult job, living in a house that I hated paying rent for, and spending money on unnecessary things.  I kept having these goals for being a full-time traveller in the back of my mind and living a simple life; they haunted me every day. I finally made the decision to quit my job, sell all my stuff, and build a house that was mobile wherever I went. It was not a light decision for me, but I knew that if I wanted happiness, it was what I needed to do. I quit a high paying job, left a beach view condo, sold all my stuff, and dedicated my youth to this life. The one thing I kept with me was my wanderer spirit which has motivated me to keep going and continue to travel. Now, with all that stuff no longer anchoring me down, I am free to go and visit wherever I set my GPS. 


The one thing I kept with me was my wanderer spirit...

-WHAT IT MEANS-

Traveling to me holds more value than money could ever buy. It turns me into a storyteller, and I get to share those adventures on my blog. It's just a lifestyle that I chose to dedicate myself too. 

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-TRAVEL STYLE-

Most of the travelling I do is in the mountains, national parks, and campgrounds. I also will occasionally travel somewhere by plane. I think that my travel is influential on experience, and what the locals have to say. I like to experience an area just like a local does. I tend to research before I travel to a new place, and what the best places to visit are. I am not typically a museum type of person; I just think I'd instead be doing something more adventurous. I do appreciate good art, but I tend to enjoy mother nature's art even better. When it comes to food, I enjoy experimenting foods that cultured to that area and what is typically the local's go-to. I will mention locals quite often because they always know the best places to see and best places to eat. I love to go out in a new city and experience the nightlife. I am a real night owl, and I love places that are lively and have dancing. 

I am a pretty restful traveller most of the time; I am someone who enjoys taking their time and experiencing things. I don't understand the travelers who tend to hop from place to place so quickly, that is too stressful for me. I tend to travel alone. If I go with a group, I always want to do something, and most of the times they want to do something else. I can't do my own thing because of the pressure to be with them. When I travel alone, I can do what I want without the stress to impress anyone or forfeit my wishes to do something. If I do go with someone, it is usually my SO or a close friend. 


-CHECKLIST-

When it comes to the places that I have been, the list is longer than I could count. When you have so many incredible adventures, it could not fit in one paragraph. However, my favorite place that I've been is in Hawaii. I am not just talking about your "typical resort and mai tai" type of vacation; I am talking about the REAL Hawaii. While having friends on both Oahu and Big Island Hawaii, I have been able to experience Hawaii like a local. The gorgeous mountains that take your breath away, the crystal blue water that washes away your worries, the jungles, secret swimming holes, and oh the list continues. When I am there, I completely forget my troubles and go with the slowed down Hawaiian time. It's just so hard to explain in short words if you have never experienced it, but I will be talking about my adventures there in future posts.  It's an exciting place to visit. 

When it comes to what's next on my list, that would be the Oregon Coast. In just a few short months, I will take a road trip to adventure Oregon's coastline and beautiful forests. It's something I have always wanted to explore. 


-CRAZINESS-

Q: I love what you said about moving quickly on your decisions on your post “Let’s Turn the Page: Wanderer Update”. Your sentence was: “I tend to move quickly with my decisions so, at the nearest opportunity, I bought my first van.” 

I love this statement. Because it’s so crazy (some people would say), but it makes perfect sense to me. I realized at a certain point that you must listen to intuition and act on it before your conscious mind interferes.

Now, getting a van to travel in with your cat and downsizing your life, then going on multiple adventures. This is a life that some people dream of for all of their years, and some never get to do it. Some need a rude awakening to finally act on it. And some are brave, like you, and don’t procrastinate their intuition and aspirations.

I know I’ve already said a lot on this subject, but I had to show my appreciation. Please talk a little about this. In making those decisions that are out of the norm and slightly crazy. And how you go about this.

A: I'm thrilled that you brought this up because this is something that defines a huge part of me. That statement is correct, in other words, when I set my mind to something I do anything I can to achieve it. At the time I set the goal of having a van, I was desperately trying to get out of my lease with my landlord who was a nut job and very difficult to handle. For a long time, I had the goal to live in a "tiny space, " and I was so close to the target, but this obstacle was in my way. Finally, my landlord agreed to let me out of my lease early and I was set free. I had a few thousand dollars in savings, and the first thing I did was start looking on Craiglist. It was only about two days and then I set my sights on this camper van. It was old, but it had character and it had a good foundation. I got in contact with the seller and asked her if I could see the van the very next morning. I got my cash and was ready to do business. I went with my gut, handed the seller the payment, and made the transaction happen. Thus the statement, I hopped at the first opportunity I could, and I do not regret it. When it comes to decisions, I am a logical person who always relies on intuition. I've always had a strong gut feeling, and I tend to follow it because I'm almost always right about things. I bought the van and got straight to work on gutting the inside. The whole process of completing the van took about a month and a half, working day and night. Trust me; I have gotten so many different opinions on this decision and people saying they wish they could do what I did. I've also heard many people say that they wish they travelled more when they were younger and experienced life. I am a very spontaneous person, and I make crazy decisions that some people otherwise would not even think twice about doing. When I make a decision, I am smart about things, and I do think about the all the outcomes and consequences. It's just who I am; I am a wanderer who does adventurous things. 


-CIRCUMSTANCES-

I was a person who longed for more adventure and travel in my life, but I was too focused on what I thought were the essential things. Everyone has their situation, and they all handle things differently. Before I became a travel blogger, I was working at a high-end corporate wellness company, and I held a specialized financial position along with a few others. I made about 4k a month, and I handled it irresponsibly. I was materialistically minded, and I wanted the latest and greatest thing. I lived in a beach view condo, and I had a lovely car to go along with that. I thought that was how people and my family wanted me to live my life. I was trying to make others happy while I suffered at a job I didn't even enjoy. I am young and don't have significant responsibilities that tie me down to one place, so I decided to quit and pursue my passion. If you are in a situation and you have a goal to travel more, put your mind to it and accomplish your goal. I have dealt with financial setbacks, school, responsibilities in my way and I still pursue what I love because it is for ME. Not everyone can just up and quit their job, but you can give yourself a getaway every once in a while.  Not everyone can leave their family and make a getaway, instead, take your family with you. No matter what your circumstance is, just make your travel dream happen. 


No matter what your circumstance is, just make your travel dream happen

-STORY: 
Do you care to share a cool story you might have about an adventure you’ve been on?

The first interesting adventure that comes to mind was when my S.O. and I decided to go on a camping trip with only 24 hours to accomplish it. We needed an escape from busy life, so we decided to take a 24-hour escape along the Pacific Coast Highway in Western California. With a stunning sunset, a fire cooked meal, and an astronomical night under the stars. You can read about the entire story here.


-SLOW FASHION-

I think slow fashion is an amazing movement and wish more designers and companies would take this approach. I would rather wear clothes that are tailor-made for my body, and more eco-friendly. I am not a fan of big designers because they make a piece of cloth and slap a big price tag on it. I like clothes that are more functional and have a more reasonable price tag.
My style? It's simple. I choose wisely when it comes to my clothes. I buy clothes that will last me for a long time and have good quality as well. When it comes to fashion experience, I have some exposure to it because I had some friends who were all about the latest brands and spent hundreds of dollars on these products. Keeping up with the latest fashion has never impressed me and probably never will. Designer companies treat their workers bad, use so many resources, only care about profit, and think that everyone should be a size 0 no matter what models they use to promote their clothes.

If I shopped from a brand who made my clothes for me and to fit my body shape, and it is harmonious with natural resources... I'd be pleased. 


-SUCCESS-

Success to me is not about money, what job you have, what car you have, your clothes, or your house. Being successful to me is being the happiest person you can be with the life that you give yourself.
It is about being open-minded and getting out of your comfort zone which will allow yourself to grow as a person. It's about taking the bricks and obstacles that have been thrown at you and building your foundation. It's about not letting society define what success is for you. Think about what you find favorable, and do your very best to achieve it. No matter what it may be. 


-A BETTER LIFE (tiyo) -

 I could give many tiyö, but I think keeping a positive mindset is the most important. Personally, I have gone through many obstacles that could have defined me as a person for life. I was separated from my birth mom at a young age and dealt with a broken family. I've abused in every way possible. I have gone through humiliation, and I was bullied all through school even high school. I was made to feel like an outcast in my own family and was never accepted for who I was. The list goes on and unfortunately, these things happen more frequently in this modern society we live in. With all this stuff and more that wasn't mentioned, I decided not to let my past define me as a person. I stayed clear from any sort of crutch that could take the pain away and help me forget. Although, some days it's hard not to think about it. I made it a goal to make the most of my future even though I had no control over the past. I am doing something that I have always dreamed of doing, but never thought I could make it possible.

You have to set yourself to have a positive mindset to achieve things that you never thought you could.

Don't let your past define you.
No matter what age you are at, you can always decide to make the change to make your future a better place. 


-A BETTER WORLD:

I think we can achieve a more gentle world if people were more open-minded, and accepting. There are so many people that are so caught up in their ways and think that their opinion is the most critical thing in this world. Some people find discrimination in every single aspect of someone who different than them such as different skin color, different gender, etc. If we could just accept that people are who they are, and not mistreat them, then it could make a big difference. Also, if there weren't such a focus on money, then maybe there would be less greed in people. For some people, money and having the best things is their life. It would take a miracle to transform this world into a more gentler world, and maybe someday it will be. All we have for this is hope.  


Regards, 

April
Creator of Travelling Wanderer

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For more INSPIRED posts, click here.

To follow along on April's daring adventures, click here

If you'd like to check out the full story about April's spontaneous adventure, click here.