“Travel while you’re young and able. Don’t worry about the money, just make it work. Experience is far more valuable than money will ever be.”
I can’t believe we’re already in the last week of 2017! So this here is going to be our last traveler story this year. Worry not though, I’ll be back with more stories from some amazing people next year too. So without much ado, let’s dive right into this episode of “Traveler Stories From Around The World.”
My guest today is Rose Jones, originally from California (USA), who’s picked up her love for tea during a semester in London. She usually wears combat boots. And earlier this year she ran away with the circus!
She’s currently working on tour with another show which allows her to visit a different city every week! Here’s her story.
What got you into traveling?
Initially, my mom was the reason I wanted to travel. She moved about a lot when she was young and told my siblings and me about the places she lived in. I knew then I wanted to travel.
When I graduated from high school I moved away from home, but it was really my semester abroad in London that changed things. After the semester ended, I was not ready to come home so I spent two more weeks backpacking through France and Italy. I have been figuring out ways to travel since then.
What was your first travel experience like?
It was wonderful, but not perfect. No trip is perfect, so if you really want to enjoy yourself you have to let go of that expectation. My first week in London I experienced the infamous pickpockets when my iPod was stolen. My first homestay family had cats and it really bothered my allergies. Fortunately, I was able to move.
I was also on “poor college student” status which means I ate a lot less than I did at home. And walked everywhere since I did not have my car (on the upside I lost about 15 pounds while I was there).
Despite the mishaps, I would do it all over again. It was life-changing. I enjoyed every tour, museum, restaurant and even just days where I was walking around by myself after class and feeling like a local.
I loved English breakfast and afternoon tea. After school ended, I spent two weeks backing packing through France and Italy with friends. I was so glad I packed light and had an actual backpack. My friends brought their suitcases. I do not recommend pulling a roller bag over cobblestones.
In all honesty, the trip through France and Italy was not well planned. But we managed to find youth hostels in every city and navigate using trains despite not being able to speak French or Italian.
How did you take up blogging?
I have wanted to start a blog or YouTube channel for years. When I started working on tour with the circus in February of this year, I knew I would be in a different city every week. And that seemed like the perfect time to start a travel blog.
Which is your favorite destination and why?
In the US – New York City. It’s so busy! I love that. My favorite place is the Central Park. Abroad – Rome. The architecture and the aqueducts were amazing. I could not believe how good the water tasted.
Speaking of tasted – Italian Pizza – delicious! The Colosseum was bigger than I thought it would be. Also, I’m a big ancient history fan and visiting Rome makes you feel like you have stepped back in time. If I’m being honest those Italian men made me smile too.
Tell me about one of your most memorable travel experiences.
We went to the Vatican city. We did not think we would see the Pope, but in fact, we arrived during mass and saw him sitting on the golden chair. I’m not Catholic, but seeing him in person makes you feel like you are part of living history.
What is your advice to people who wish to travel but think they can’t?
Thinking you can’t is part of the problem. Just make a plan and do it! Set aside a $100 every month. In six months you will have $600. Pick a place you want to go and book a hotel (usually you do not even have to pay for the hotel until you check out).
If you know you cannot afford to pay for it all at once, then book far enough in advance so you can set a little money aside every month. Also, you can start small. $600 is more than enough for a weekend trip to someplace close enough to drive. Once you go on a few trips and realize you can do it, there will be no stopping you.
Thanks, Rose. That’s a really useful tip!
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