81 Year-Old Female Solo Traveler Inspires Me And My Mother to See The World

It is interesting where we find our inspiration. Sometimes it is more interesting when inspiration finds us. This is just what happened to me one night sitting at the bar of my local pub drinking a beer. It did take a number of years before I was actually able to take the experience, advice, and resulting inspiration to heart. But I did and I still do. I was even able to share this story with my mother who also found great inspiration and motivation. Currently both my mother and myself are bearing the fruits of this one delicate and unique interaction of inspiration. Blog #18 of “40 Blogs in 40 Days about 40 Podcasts” shares the moments that lead to the story told in my podcast Episode OHS030.

One of my great dreams and desires in life is just to travel. International travel… To visit places of wonder, meet the locals, to eat the unknown and simply be out on the edge of the mainstream lives many of us tend to live. For many years it was not within my realm of financial reality to manifest walking “around the world like Cain in the Kung Fu.” (A reference made by Samuel L. Jackson’s character in the movie Pulp Fiction.) Then at the turn of the millennium I bought and started to live in my own Martial Art school. My dojo was named 3 Shapes Aikido. For ten years I taught, trained, and lived at 3 Shapes Aikido in Boise’s Historic North End Neighborhood. In that time I was able to travel quite a bit within the United States training in the art of Aikido. I was a “Dojo Maniac!” Mostly what I saw was the inside of an airport, an airplane, and the dojo. Not quite the travel I aspired to do but travel nonetheless. I spent so much time in California some Aikido students thought I actually lived there. Now as cool as cool can be, that was pretty cool. Yet my heart deeply yearned for long term solo international travel.

A number of years ago I asked my mother what she wanted to do with the rest of her life. At 69 years old she took a deep breath and profoundly contemplated my question. She then turned to me and said, “I want to be a gypsy!” I could tell she meant it. She mentioned how she really only wanted to travel to and visit about 6 places including the Vatican in Italy, the Egyptian pyramids, and some time in Jerusalem. When I thought about her list I realized most of the places were pretty interesting to me. I then realized I could repay the kindness of my mother in a small way by helping her travel and see the sights of her dreams. In essence, I could help her be a gypsy. It is a win-win situation. I am able to help my mother fulfill her dreams and my travels desires all at once.

The next day while we were having lunch I asked her about her dream to be a gypsy. She said it would be nice to travel but I do not think I can do it alone. She started to express a number of fears and concerns about her age and he ability to travel. I then asked her if she would like to travel with me? She seemed a bit surprised by my suggestion. As a professional speaker I had already been to Malaysia, Singapore, Austria, Estonia, Finland, and the Czech Republic. I did these speaking tours in solo travel mode and she knows I like to travel alone. She then asked me if I would want to travel with her. Now I paused for a moment to consider my answer. Though my mother is not my ideal travel partner I do want to repay the kindness of her motherhood. And she wants to go to some really cool places. So I looked at her and replied, “I want to help you make your dreams come true.” She was so happy and grateful she actually started to shake like an over-excited child. Then she looked a bit concerned at said, “I am almost 70 and not sure if I can do it at my age and my health.” I smiled and said, “look at it this way… This is as young as you are ever going to be. Now is the perfect time.” I then told her about an 81 year-old female solo traveler who introduced herself to me at a pub and inspired me to travel.

Since telling her that story we set the ball in motion and planned our first trip to Mazatlan, Mexico, which we took in 2017. Since she was born and raised in Oaxaca, Mexico, we chose a place she would feel comfortable and relaxed. She also has many friends who we visited and stayed with while there. That same year I made a trip a solo to Tibet and China and will be blogging and podcasting about those very soon. This year in 2018 mama and I are planning a trip to Italy. She wants to go to the Vatican, see the Coliseum, and visit the city where my father was born. I plan to have my vlog up and running during the trip so stay tuned for more vlogs, blogs, and podcasts internationally traveling with my mother. 

To hear the story of meeting this most beautiful and lovely 81 year-old female solo traveler and the conversation that inspired my mother and myself to travel the world I invite you to click and listen to my One Hand Speaks Storytelling Podcast Episode OHS030. Please feel free to share this blog or my podcast and I ask you to offer a comment with your opinion and feedback! Thanks!

Leave a Reply Text

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *