Sunshine, beaches, towering palm trees, beautiful people – Los Angeles covers it all. From snowy escapes high in the mountains, to beautiful summers down in Hollywood. With all it’s glory, reputation and beauty, why would one need to live anywhere else, let alone leave? I get it, California is a place many dream of visiting or moving to. Most people come here with dreams of seeing the “stars” and gaining fame, while others just want better weather year round. Maybe I see it differently because I’ve lived here my entire life. Or, maybe, it’s because my parents took me around the world by the time I was 8. Having an amazing job that lets me explore the world beyond the Hollywood sign doesn’t hurt either. But, all of these factors haven’t diverted my desire to see even further beyond that infamous landmark. To this day, it blows my mind that most Americans haven’t left the state, let alone, the country.
It was when my parents took me on their month long vacation around Europe that I knew traveling would be something I didn’t want to live without.
I didn’t go back until my junior year of college, when I decided to study abroad. I had been taking out student loans on my own, but I knew I couldn’t pass up an opportunity like this. I was based in London, a city I’d visited before, and although I was older and could better enjoy the city, it all felt so familiar, and, eventually, became like my second home. It also marked the first time that I’d traveled to another country solo. The sense of adventure, and the independence that I developed that year, changed me forever. A couple years after college, I had the opportunity to become a flight attendant for a private jet company. Never in my life had I even considered being a flight attendant, but at this time, I was a struggling college graduate living at home, helping my parents pay the bills. This opportunity would triple my salary while traveling the world…why not?
It’s been five years since I began as a flight attendant, and I’ve been to Australia, The Caribbean, China, Cuba, France, Holland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the U.K., and the list goes on. During my travels, I’ve met countless people from all over, and all walks of life. I’ve gone from hanging out in the slums of the Philippines, to having drinks with some of your favorite entertainers in the nicest hotel bars in the most random country. There’s something about riding the train in New York City, or the Tube in London – when I go somewhere, I want the full experience. We all like nice things, but I want to know what it feels like to be one of the locals, and really immerse myself into the culture. And, as most travelers know, the best way to dive right into the experience is to try the local cuisine.
When I travel to a city, both domestic and international, I always do a little research to find the best restaurants serving the best local food. Through traveling, I’ve developed a desire to try almost anything, and a way more complex and diverse palate, which helps when entering every new environment I encounter.
To me, travel is one of the best forms of education. If you travel with an open mind, you will be amazed at how much you will learn, not only about the world outside, but about yourself. Every experience is different, and what may work for me, might not work for you. But you will never know unless you try. So, whether it’s finding a job opportunity in travel, taking a vacation with friends, or just some much needed alone time to self reflect, book that flight, find the perfect Noirbnb, and enjoy!