Temecula native blogs her world travels
Friday, November 1st, 2013
Issue 44, Volume 17.
A lot of what she writes about in her blog focuses on affordable ways to travel, travel guides, and e-books.
Only in the past few years has she been traveling. Growing up she didn’t do a lot of traveling outside of the country, except for Mexico.
"I was never really that curious about the world," Rich said. "I didn’t know too much about traveling."
Back in the 90s, Temecula was a lot smaller than it is today, and somewhat of a Pleasantville, she said. The mall hadn’t been built yet and there were only two high schools.
Rich lived out in wine country and lived on acres. She also said that she didn’t have a lot of friends as a child, except for those she rode the bus with.
"That’s as big as the world was," she said.
Bullying was just as bad back then as it is today, Rich said, especially in a small town.
"It was exactly like ‘Mean Girls’," she recalled.
College was the first cultural experience she had.
It wasn’t until her sophomore year of college that she got to experience traveling outside of the country when she enrolled in a Spanish language program for the summer. Rich traveled to Spain and lived with a host family, it was then that she had her first taste of what the world was really like.
"I realized how much we have in common with people, even if there is a language barrier," she said. "Even sharing a smile with a complete stranger in another country, that barrier that separates you from the rest of the world melts."
After living in a small town and then going to a foreign country, Rich said her mind was blown. Everything she thought she wanted was wrong. She also said she felt at home, even though she was in another country.
After she graduated from San Diego State University Rich moved to Los Angeles.Majoring in finance and looking for a job, she was on the path to becoming a young professional.
Although she always felt that finance was what she wanted to do, she woke up one morning to feeling like she was having a pre-quarter life crisis.
"I felt like I needed to take a chance on something," Rich said.
She ended up traveling to Australia, South Asia and New Zealand, and she has been traveling ever since.
Before she had picked up and traveled, Rich was living in Santa Monica. She had been renting a flat that was owned by an Australian couple. Rich said they were the ones who inspired her to take the trip.
Eventually, Rich quit her job. She has a background in dance and was offered a job as a performer at an amusement park in Indonesia. Unfortunately, the plan fell through.
Rich reached out to her friends in Australia who convinced her take the trip. She ended up living in Australia for six weeks and traveling to surrounding countries.
That summer, she said, changed her outlook on life.
"I was so inspired by the experience that I ended up creating a blog from a journal that I kept on the trip," Rich said.
She wrote in the journal every day, for 90 days. She wanted to be expressive and share her stories with others, although she didn’t know anything about blogging.
Another benefit to blogging her traveling experiences is that she will be able to revisit them for the rest of her life, as well as sharing them with her future children.
The time to travel is now, she said, because she is only 25-years-old she can always get back into a career when she gets older.
It would be a lot harder to travel when you’re older, she said.
One of her future goals is to give motivational speeches about traveling or working with study abroad programs.
"It’s very important to me to share my message," she said. Although she doesn’t preach if someone should travel or not and doesn’t think traveling is for everybody.
"You need to want that for yourself," she said.
You can visit Rich’s blog at theblondeabroad.com.
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