Over the course of my studies and career, I have lived in 7 different countries: Austria, France, Spain, UK, USA, Peru and Germany and I love it. I moved back to London (my 4th time here) about 18 months ago and while I am settling down in the UK, I thought it is time for a quick recap.
I have always loved travelling. I took my first flight when I was 3 months old. My family is spread out all over and we travelled a lot to see the world and visit each other. Travelling and moving from country to country has broadened my horizon so much. I have learned new things, meet so many amazing people and made friends all over the world, I have seen beautiful places and landscapes, learned about history, different cultures and habits. I simply love diving into new experiences, to hear new music, watch a sunset over a beach somewhere, try exotic dishes... I just can’t get enough.
In the 90s – before we had the internet we know today – with limited information available, our trips were often real adventures. There was no app guiding you from hotel to hotel, no Google Maps or Google Translate. You had to travel to places to experience them, would discover new things, find cool stuff and had quite unique experiences. But even now, travelling and living in different countries is always a fantastic experience.
My travel addiction started with our family trips – to Italy, Greece, Spain, Turkey, Croatia, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands, UK, France, Israel, China, Thailand, Egypt, the US and Canada. During my studies, I had the opportunity to work and study abroad and I jumped on it. The idea to spend more than just a few weeks in a different world sounded fantastic. So, I lived in San Francisco, in Lille, in London and in the Austrian countryside and returned with so many great memories. After I graduated, I went backpacking around the world for 6 months and eventually ended up in South America where I decided to stay to see more, learn Spanish and to start my first business.
After a year at the other end of the world, I moved to Barcelona. I loved South America but wanted to be closer to my family and friends in Europe. And Barcelona was a good compromise. It combines the best of South American culture and food with a European city, culture and liveliness and the Spanish & Catalan lifestyle. And there is a beach. What more can you ask for? Unfortunately, the economic crisis hit Spain so hard, that I eventually decided with a heavy heart to return to my home country Germany and stay there for a while. While I was back in Germany, my passion for travelling never faded and I did some wonderful trips to India, South East Asia and South America. Now I am back in London and am enjoying my time here to the fullest – a true melting pot of culture, music, theatre, exhibitions, markets and people from all over the world.
I remember a long time ago some friends in my graduation class said: "I am happy for you, but I could never do that – travel to such remote places and just with a backpack." For me, it was the best decision ever and I loved every minute of it. I would have never learnt to dance Salsa, got “kidnapped” by Vietnamese smugglers, burnt my leg on the exhaust of a motorbike, swam with pink dolphins and giant turtles, played tennis high up in the Andes, walked on lava, danced on the beach till sunrise, prepared ceviche like a local, walked on 5200m high mountains, counted stars in the desert and found friends for life, the list is endless… 😊 the anecdotes and stories will last a lifetime and always make me smile when I need a happy memory.
In our globalised world, we have such a unique opportunity to move around, explore and see the world. Life is short, you should make the most of it! And if you are so lucky to have chosen a profession that allows you to work in different countries, please do it! You will not regret it.