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“Life cannot be understood flat on a page. It has to be lived; a person has to get out of his head, has to fall in love, has to memorize poems, has to jump off bridges into rivers, has to stand in an empty desert and whisper sonnets under his breath.”
– Donald Miller, Through Painted Deserts

It all began as a three month solo expedition through South America. This blog was meant to document my journey as I left Cleveland, Ohio for Buenos Aires, Argentina (on that fateful day of September 7, 2009) and worked my way up through Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador before flying out of Quito three months later.

I wasn’t sure what those few months held in store for me, but I knew that it would be an exciting adventure, full of awe-inspiring, unique and amazing places, people, and experiences. And I was right. I was thrilled to be embarking on that journey, a trip that I talked for years about doing after graduation – and then I went ahead and really did it! Nothing can stand between you and your dreams but yourself, and I saw that trip as proof that all it takes is a little push and you can go for the things you want, no matter how intimidating they may sometimes seem.

After returning home, my conquering spirit couldn’t be subdued, and it only seemed right to keep on pursuing all the adventures I’d talked about doing. After just two weeks in Ohio I was off to Sweden to visit my boyfriend Oscar, still unsure what my next step in life would be. After two months in frigid Sverige (broken up by an extremely eventful trip to Jordan), I returned to the States once more with a plan: Australia. Work & Holiday visas are wonderfully easy for both Americans and Swedes to get, and so Oscar and I made the long journey to meet in the middle. We spent a year working and traveling in the land of Oz, living across the continent in both Sydney and Perth.

After that, we each returned to our home country to work and save some money. Oscar is living in Sweden working in banking and I am in Southwest, Florida, currently working as a journalist. He has visited me here in sunny Florida a couple times, but I can say that we will be together again more permanently later this year, and my travels are far from over, so stay tuned…….

Exactly what’s next? Who knows! But it’s sure to be exciting, and this blog will serve as a record of all my adventures and escapades as I go.

Read more about me here.

17 Comments leave one →
  1. March 16, 2010 9:27 pm

    Love the site! Good luck down under!

  2. May 6, 2010 2:31 pm

    We would love you to consider a link exchange.

    My partner Danielle and I are currently traveling to nearly every country in Africa (we are writing now from Dakar, Senegal) meeting with farmers, workers, NGO’s and community groups writing about innovations and projects that our working to alliviate hunger and poverty. We travel blog everyday at BorderJumpers ( We are trying to highlight stories of hope and success.

    Thanks so much for your consideration!

    All the best, Bernie and Dani

  3. March 21, 2011 7:24 pm


    I’d like to invite you to participate in my research: “What Do Bloggers Want to Preserve? Defining the ‘Essence’ of User-Generated Content for Preservation.” This study will gain an understanding of how bloggers value their blogs and what elements bloggers think are important for preservation.

    You are being asked to participate because your blog posts are tagged as being related to the theme of travel in one of the blog-hosting services and because your blog is not hosted by any commercial agency. Your participation is completely voluntary.

    The survey is NOW OPEN and will remain open until midnight (EDT) 20 April 2011. If you are interested and would like to part in take the survey, please visit this URL:

    Thank you in advance for considering participation in my study, and please
    feel free to pass along this survey to others who might be interested!
    Ayoung Yoon
    Doctoral Student
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    School of Information and Library Science

  4. September 28, 2011 9:04 pm

    Hello there!

    Just randomly wandered on to your blog. I am also someone who is drawn to traveling but, I have yet to take the plunge and go for an extended time. I just graduated and want to take a trip with my best friend in December, ironically enough to AUSTRALIA. It keeps popping up in my life in the most interesting places. Too ironic to not leave a comment, I admire your boldness for chasing after your dreams and letting go of your fears, hopefully I’ll follow suit!


  5. November 14, 2011 11:43 pm

    great story =) hope you enjoy australia, great country!

  6. Neo permalink
    December 14, 2012 2:58 am


    I am a webmaster of Travel Website site and blogs.I want to be Link Partner with your sites.If you are interested contact me or send me your webmaster Emailid.

    Thank You

  7. Ashwin permalink
    January 7, 2013 6:01 am


    I went through your site and I really liked it. I was wondering if we could exchange links, it would be mutually beneficial for us.
    Please mail me at, if you are interested.



  8. Alex permalink
    April 26, 2013 10:18 am

    Hello Rachael. I’m Alex.

    I would like to publish a guest post (with one link) on your great blog –

    Could you please give me the price for the placement of it? Thank you and I look forward to your reply.
    Have a nice day.

  9. June 4, 2013 9:40 am


    My name is KC Owens, I’m a college student and I love to travel! While cruising the Internet, I found your site and really enjoyed reading your posts. I have been to countries all over Europe with just my backpack and a camera. Since I am a college student and I have significant bills, it can be difficult to find ways to travel the world. However, I have done this several times, with less than ten pounds of luggage and while on a college dime!

    I was hoping that you would allow me to write a post for your site to share my tips and tricks with your readers. I put a lot of time into my traveling, it is my biggest passion and I would love to inspire others by sharing my stories, mistakes and triumphs. I look forward to hearing from you!


    KC Owens

  10. December 19, 2013 11:07 am


    I have just nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Here is the link:

    The Rules
    1.Display the award logo on your blog.
    2.Link back to the person who nominated you.
    3.State 7 things about yourself.
    4.Nominate 15 bloggers.
    5.Notify these bloggers of the nomination and the rules


    Tam (Travelling Book Junkie)

  11. Laura permalink
    January 13, 2014 9:35 am

    Hello, I was wondering if you would like to be a guest blogger for a reputable Lifestyle and Travel organisation in the UK. Your stories and experiences would be a great way to show people what adventures they could have. I cannot offer payment, just accreditation and links to your website. We wan’t people to have the enriching experiences you have been fortunate enough to undertake.

    Kind regards,


  12. Larissa permalink
    March 31, 2014 6:37 am

    Your site is great! I will be graduating this summer and I still have no idea what I want to do so I was thinking of taking a year to do some internships/work palcements abroad in Europe (I’m a British Citizen)- where can I find internships/placements that actually pay so that it will cover my costs of living and travel? There are so many programmes out there that it is hard to figure out what to do! I would even consider going outside EUrope- it all depends on if the pay can cover the costs of travel and living! Thanks 🙂

  13. stephanie permalink
    July 15, 2014 8:26 pm

    Hi there! I have found your blog really helpful as I am hoping to soon apply for the holiday and working visa in Australia. One question I do have is do you pay the $420 for the visa before you know if you are accepted or not? Are you automatically out that money or do I only have to pay if I get accepted. Thanks for your time!!


  14. Katlyn permalink
    July 27, 2015 8:28 am

    Hi! So, I stumbled onto your blog tonight (from my computer at work, shh! Don’t tell anyone! ;)) and I love it! I have gotten myself knee deep in research about going to Australia on a WHV next year, and your blog has some great info, as well as tons of inspiration to keep me motivated while I wade through TONS of paperwork. I am going to be working as as Nurse over there, and I am going to spend the first 6 months in Brisbane, then maybe spend some time in Sydney or Melbourne. I have really enjoyed reading about your experiences all over the world, and especially in Oz! Can’t wait to see where else your travels take you, and keep up the great work with the blog!

  15. Tejash Thaker permalink
    February 11, 2016 9:09 am

    Respected Sir / Madam,

    My name is Tejash and I am 39 years Young IT professional. I am willing to work as Intern in Information technology / Aviation or any other field which gives me knowledge

    During my research, i found your website and company. Studied lot. have Intelligence, Information technology Background, Ability to resolve issue quickly, Ability to grasp new knowledge/system. Apart from that I am dreamer and always like to do more to make lives of others easier.

    I would like to work as Intern in Any Department and within a month or so I will be confident that i will be able to resume full charge of any duty you may assigned.I think I am best fit to become Trainee with a Goal to progress on management ladder.

    Please have my Complete CV / Resume. I have been working in information Technology field managing IT Hardware, network, Software ERP / CRM.

    I am looking forward for long term relationship and good career.

    With regards,

    Tejash Thaker
    469, janta Nagar, Ramol Road, VIA. CTM Cross Road, Ramol, Ahmedabad, Gujarat State, INDIA.
    pin Code : 382449
    Cell : +91-9374409154

  16. Doug B permalink
    May 21, 2016 11:44 pm

    Like some of the other lucky ones I happened to stumble upon your blog as well. Thank you so much for all the wonderful information here!

    It’s so clear and accessible that at the end of the night I feel a little lighter and less weighed down with questions!

    Once again thanks so much and I hope you’re travels are amazing 🙂

  17. October 1, 2018 4:47 pm

    Hi Rachael,

    I’m the Community  Manager with Anagram Interactive, where we specialize in connecting  established brands with prominent bloggers. We are currently running a campaign for one of the top online stationery brands that you and your readers might find very interesting.
    Please let me know if this is something you’d be interested in and I’ll show you how to get started. Please kindly write to me at

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