I’ve literally been traveling since birth. I was born in Frankfurt, Germany, and grew up mainly in Louisiana and Texas with a sprinkle of South Carolina. My mother was in the US Army for 22 years before she retired; it afforded me the opportunity to travel, visit different places and forced me to meet and assimilate with many types of people and cultures. Anyone that understands the “Army Brat” life understands that your friends may come and go, but the knowledge and impression they leave on you can be everlasting. As a young kid, you never really knew when you’d have to move to the next spot, or when your best friend for the last year would be moving to another base. Keep in mind, my upbringings were prior to the internet and email, so staying in touch with your friends in grade school wasn’t really going to happen (no pen pal action.) Growing up in this environment forces you to enjoy your friends while they’re there, and seize every moment (hence my care-free attitude, zest for life and excuse for being bad with names/faces.)
So why start this company? Simple answer – people kept asking/telling me, “let me know the next time you fly out!” I finally called their bluffs and a couple hundred people actually came out!? The best part was being able to help my friends, family, and complete strangers enhance and enjoy their current friendships while forging new ones. A lot of our guests are either looking to experience new things, create some fun road trip stories or relive some old trip stories that they haven’t been able to recreate while “adulting.” It’s also personally gratifying to be able to have a business with a charitable component, and ability to give back to the communities and countries that we visit.
So anyway, 3 passports later, I secretly hope that our guests can have the same “awakening” I had back in 2000 during a study abroad program. Living in another country for a semester can really change your views on yourself, your own country, and the things you thought brought happiness.
When you’re able to see some of the poorest (money-wise) people on earth, happier than some of the richest (money-wise) people you know from back home in the US, it does something to you. You learn to not only appreciate what you have but how to appreciate life in a different way. The things we take for granted are truly exposed through travels… (I don’t want to bore you, so ask me the rest in person; I’m out!!!)
This picture has nothing to do with anything… It’s just my mom in 1975… #BlackGirlMagic