Photo courtesy of Story Accents – flickr
I know. You’re wondering what on earth could Oprah possibly have to do with this travel blog – besides the fact that she’s a Wander Boomer who likes to travel (Can you say “Australia” anyone?). But Oprah represents so much more than that to this Wanderboomer. We grew up together after all. Yes, she was in Chicago while I was in Seattle. But we learned from making some of the same mistakes. I’ll bet some of you did, too. We learned when it’s time to let go and move on, to trust our inner voice, and to use that voice to stand up for ourselves and others.
Oprah has blazed a bright trail for women – and men – yet her message to each of us has always been to get off the beaten path and follow our own calling. I took her message to heart – literally. When classmates and colleagues went to Europe, I hopped on a plane to Egypt, and later Brazil. Long after friends had given birth to their children, my husband and I traveled to China to bring home our toddler daughter.
When I travel to far-flung locations, I am my best self – not always as fearless or as smart as I’d like to be, but I go anyway. I’m still learning, still a work in progress, still growing into a better version of who I am capable of becoming. Travel helps me do that. I’m forced out of my comfort zone, the blinders come off, and I have to figure out how to be resourceful in unexpected situations .
So many of my “Aha” moments have come while I’ve been on the road: clarity about decisions hanging over my head; a recognition that despite our differences, we are all interconnected; a visceral understanding of how vital it is to preserve a pristine natural habitat for our planet.
Travel to Quito, Ecuador and The Galapagos Islands is next up for me, while Antarctica and Australia are still ahead. But wherever I go, I’ll take Oprah’s gifts with me: grace towards others who may see the world differently than I do, generosity of spirit, and gratitude for the freedom to travel the world and live an adventurous life. When you think about it, not bad items to bring along on any of our journeys.
What about you, Boomers? How has travel changed you? Where are you going next?