A question I often get asked as a travel blogger, what drove your passion for travelling? I always reply with the same answer, “My parents”. Let me take you back to 1993, when I was still in my not born yet and my mum had just found out she was expecting a second baby. My dad won flights to Florida through work that same day and had to be used within a month. My sister was just under two years old, my mum was pregnant with and they had these flights to visit Orlando along with tickets to theme parks – sea world, universal studios, the works! My dad questions, should we go? From the stories my mum tells me now, her facial expression spoke a thousand words before she utters “I’m going to get on that plane whether you’re coming or not!” – that just sums up my mum’s love to travel, even though she was pregnant. Deep down my dad was hoping she would agree, but didn’t want to push it incase my mum felt uncomfortable. The wanderlust was so real, especially parents hadn’t been travelling since my sister was born – which was unheard of in our family. Therefore, they certainly didn’t want to pass up another opportunity to get up and go. Having had my first flight before I was even born, my life was only going to go one way…
As I grew up and went through school, my parents would use every opportunity to go away. Easter holidays, summer holidays and Christmas holidays. We tried to do at least two holidays a year, which essentially left me with a permanent tan all year round with short little getaways in between. Just the talk of a holiday in the pipeline would send my mum up into attic, grabbing the suitcases down and starting any preparations. Once my parents had my heart set of going on holiday, there was no turning back.
It got to the point where my ten year old self would question where we would be going on the next holiday after returning from one. My parents were always happy to oblige, because we started taking after something they loved doing before we were born and could carry on with our keen interest in it too.
My mum was keen about my sister and I growing up, having seen everything and experienced the different situations in the world. One place they were keen on taking us to was India. My sister and I had never been and it was an eye opening experience. It was a lesson in disguise to be grateful for what we have, to always be willing to help others and never turn a blind eye to someone in need. When you’re a young teen, having children who are around the same age as you coming and asking you for food and money, there are simply no words. My mum gave us some money to keep in our pockets to distribute to those that came up to us to ask for money – giving back to the world is something she always felt passionate about. I think that’s something that travel had taught her and she wanted us to experience the same lessons she did growing up.
I spent most of my summers in East Africa where my dad is from. Therefore, I got the taste of exotic fruits, ground to table fresh vegetables, got up close and personal with wild animals – especially the wild monkeys that use to steal food from my grandma’s vegetable patch. We went boating across the bluest waters, finding the weirdest and wonderful creatures, including sea urchins. I met Masai with their heard of cattle and watched them drink their blood as a part of their diet too. We would head down to the fish market, where fishermen would come in back to shore in the morning with any catches they had over night and we would haggle for fresh fish straight off their boats.
It’s experiences like this that kept my passion for travel alive, especially as I was born and grew up in England. I felt like I was missing out had I been born in Africa or India, but my parents made sure that we didn’t miss out on anything from our heritage.
My parents definitely preferred travelling to long haul destinations and I felt like we never didn’t travel to Europe that often. However, I feel like they covered post of it during their years travelling before they had kids and wanted to offer us those money can’t buy experiences as a family, before we got too old. Eventually, we would have wanted to have travelled with our friends, as I often do now and i’m quite glad they left most of the European destinations for us to discover on our own accord.
Together we travelled as a family and covered many continents of the world together and still are doing so. I still have my parents to blame and to thank because they are the reason I became a travel blogger. They set me up to fall in love with something that would keep my bank account empty constantly but always making happy memories whilst discovering the world, one step at a time.
They are still the biggest inspirations for my travel diaries and i’m forever grateful to them for setting me up on my journey.
I’ll leave you with one of my favourite travel quotes, “I am not the same having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.”
How did your travel journey begin?
Until next time…
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