… This Blog
I started The Grey Eyed Wanderer a few months before my first backpacking trip – solo or otherwise – with the intention of sharing my adventures on the other side of the world with friends and family back home. My decision to go backpacking in Southeast Asia was met with a wide array of emotion and skepticism from basically every person I spoke to before leaving. Most didn’t support the idea of a young woman traveling alone… of me traveling alone… and as the number of reasons why I shouldn’t go grew, so did my determination.
As I traveled and grew as a person, my approach to this blog remained unchanged. It was and always will be about sharing my stories, but is also proof that a young woman can travel alone if she is both determined and strong enough to do so. I have no grand illusions about this blog becoming anything special or even imagined that it would be possible to inspire strangers in the far corners of the world. I was just a girl with a backpack, determined to prove my strength. Determined to be happy. Determined to travel.
For starters my name is Susan, and I love to travel. I grew up in a small town in Illinois and was always determined to do and see great things. I guess perhaps this idea took form out of my love of books and movies. If you read and watch enough beauty, eventually you’ll begin to yearn for a little of your own. I never grew up traveling to far away places, so by the time I took my first trip to England in high school, I was bursting at the seams for adventure. I even tried bribing our tour guide to let me stay, just so the adventure wouldn’t have to end.
I’m fairly confident that it was during my trip to England that I was struck with my very own case of wanderlust and fell in love with travel. Despite a few small vacations here and there, and one infamous road trip, I spent most of my college years dreaming about a trip like the one that set this whole blogging thing in motion.
At heart I am both free-spirited and practical, so deciding to leave my life behind to spend four months backpacking through Southeast Asia is by far one of the most insane and wonderful decisions I’ve ever made. While I have no idea where life will take me, I know that the time I spent sleeping in questionable hostels, meeting strangers turned friends over beer, and exploring cultures and destinations I had only read about in magazines is without a doubt one of the best times in my short life…
A Few Random Facts About Me:
1: I have three tattoos – one of which I got in Cambodia in the type of adventure you can only have while getting a tattoo in Cambodia
2: I’ve watched all the movies on the 1997 & 2007 AFI 100 Years… 100 Movies List
3: I hate wearing shoes, so I’m barefoot a lot
4: I want to visit all 7 continents & as many countries as possible
5: I’m horrible at juggling… like really terrible
6: Ever since my mother introduced me to the movie “Gidget” when I was a child, I’ve wanted to learn to surf
7: I served as an AmeriCorps VISTA and hope to one day join the Peace Corps
8: I love elephants
9: Out of all of the countries I’ve been to so far, Vietnam is my favorite
10: My eyes are actually a shade of grey-blue