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RTW and back: An interview with Amanda of A Dangerous Business

amanda dangerous biz rtw nzmuse

Like moi, A Dangerous Business blogger Amanda Williams doesn’t aspire to a life of perpetual travel. In fact, she actually cut short her RTW trip when she realised she was no longer enjoying herself and finished the second leg separately after returning home to recharge for a bit.

(I don’t think I ever mentioned it here, but T hit a real low point about halfway through ours – on one particularly hellish Italian train ride, I was just about convinced I would have to dispatch him home and finish our trip by myself, which would have made the whole American road trip thing tricky…)

Here’s how she describes herself: I’m just a small-town Ohio girl trying to balance a “normal” life with a desire to discover the world beyond my Midwest bubble. My adventurous nature and inability to say “no” have led me to some pretty amazing adventures around the world, from swimming with sharks in Belize to hiking on glaciers in New Zealand to playing a concert on the Great Wall of China. I’m here to prove to people that traveling (and especially traveling as a woman) doesn’t have to be scary, lonely, or out of anybody’s reach.

What made you decide to embark on your extended trip? What’s the story there?

I’ve always loved traveling, and for the past few years I envied those “permanent nomads” who flit from place to place and get so see so much of the world. I was nearing the end of graduate school, and so taking off on a long trip right afterwards seemed like perfect timing!

How did you fund the trip?

The way most people do – I saved up money! That, and by the time I left I was making a decent amount of money from my blog and freelance writing, so I knew I would be able to work and earn a little money on the road, too.

What do you wish you knew before leaving? Any advice for would-be RTW travellers?

I wish I would have realized how burnt out I would get by traveling so quickly. By the end of 3 months in Europe, I was exhausted. I should have scheduled in more down-time for myself.

What is the most surprising thing you learned on the road?

I learned that the long-term travel thing really isn’t for me. I LOVE traveling and I love experiencing other cultures and picking out the little things that are the same and different from my own. But I was really missing home after about 2 months. Traveling non-stop for months on end just isn’t for me!

amanda dangerous biz rtw nzmuse 2

What was your favourite destination (or since I know this can be impossible to choose, what’s one place you would return to in a heartbeat?)

Sooooo difficult to choose! London is probably my favorite city in the world, but I also fell in love with Berlin on my RTW trip. Also, Vietnam! I went there during Part 2 of this trip (I ended up going home after 3 months in Europe, and did the Southeast Asia part of the trip separately), and really loved it.

You cut your RTW trip short after realising long term travel isn’t your thing. What was it like returning home?

It actually was a relief to book that ticket home after 3 months in Europe. I didn’t view it as giving up or anything – I just knew it was what I needed. It was DEFINITELY the right decision. And of course my family and boyfriend were really happy to have me home early! Plus, it gave me time to recharge and plan the Asia part of the trip.

Where are you at the moment? Do you plan to stay put – is this your ‘forever’ city?

I’m back in Ohio right now, building up my freelancing business and trying to carve out a career for myself that will allow me to work from anywhere in the world. This definitely isn’t my “forever” home, but it’s home for now. It makes a great base to take shorter trips from!

What’s still on your travel wishlist? Any confirmed trips coming up?

As for my travel wish list… it’s still huge! At the top are South Africa, Colombia, Norway, and Mexico. And as for upcoming trips, I’m doing some US/Canada exploring this summer, with trips to Niagara Falls and Alaska coming up in the next month. Beyond that, I’m currently considering a trip to New Zealand in November (it’s my favorite country ever!), or perhaps going back to Europe for some conferences. As always, who knows where I’ll end up!

Also see: RTW and back with Two for the Road and RTW and back with See You Soon

12 thoughts on “RTW and back: An interview with Amanda of A Dangerous Business

  • Reply debs@debtdebs July 15, 2014 at 22:51

    I can certainly understand how a trip like this would be exhausting. Good thing she was able to compromise and split it into two parts. Thanks for sharing the good, the bad and the ugly. 😉

  • Reply Michael Gannett July 16, 2014 at 04:30

    Happened on your post today: may we suggest NZ in October, the so-called shoulder season when weather if iffier but the upsides are huge. We rented a camper van for four weeks (2013) and drove South Island. There were few tourists anywhere, which we were grateful for in campgrounds (never needing reservations), on beaches, on one-way bridges and the more touristy towns. Yes, we had rain half the time but it always seemed to clear up and part of the day we enjoyed blue skies. I’ve just retired (70) and am conjuring (read: blog traveling at the moment) solo tripping Nov-Feb in Malaysia, Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. My wife Stell has a disability which makes long-term (especially bus) travel impossible. Our recent trips have been cruises with granddaughters (2010, 2012 and last month), as well as Valpo-B.A. and Tahiti. That’s getting old hat and I’m inching for road/rail travel, which I did a lot of in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka 1965-67 during Peace Corps in Jaipur. I’ll continue to read up on your blogs. Cheers! Mike Gannett

  • Reply Holly@ClubThrifty July 17, 2014 at 00:04

    Since we have little kids, we can’t do a RTW trip any time soon. We just have to travel in little spurts…a week here, another week here, etc. I don’t think I would like long-term travel either. I like to travel frequently but I am always ready to return home after a week or so.

    • Reply eemusings July 17, 2014 at 09:09

      There are families out there who travel long-term. Like most things if you really want to do it, you’ll find a way… but I personally couldn’t handle it.

  • Reply Joshua @ CNA Finance July 17, 2014 at 03:27

    Awesome interview…I’ve always wondered what it would be like to travel the world. It’s pretty interesting to find out from the perspective of someone who already has. Thanks for the great read!

  • Reply Alicia @ Monster Piggy Bank July 17, 2014 at 04:37

    The hardest part about buying a round the world ticket is finding the money to do it. It’s a huge mountain to climb to be sure, but I guess it doesn’t have to be difficult. :/

  • Reply Catherine July 17, 2014 at 08:02

    I bet it took a lot of courage to give up your trip after just a few months, but it’s amazing that you can say so confidently that you still love to travel but you don’t want to be a nomad! Sounds like you’ve have a lot of amazing travel experiences even if you haven’t been doing it permanently!

  • Reply leaf (the indolent cook) July 17, 2014 at 14:01

    I’m about to embark on a few months of travel (with the option for an extension) so I guess I’ll find out what suits me! I think pacing yourself can make a fair bit of difference, though. If I want to SEE ALL THE THINGS, then I’d probably burn out quite quickly. If I slow travel, I think I can do it for a lot longer.

  • Reply Well Heeled Blog July 17, 2014 at 18:59

    I enjoyed this profile. I’ve realized that I love traveling, but I also love having a home base to return to. Plus, 3 months of traveling is pretty long term in my book. 😉

  • Reply Katie @ Second-Hand Hedgehog July 18, 2014 at 02:19

    Great interview! Amanda, I feel like I know you a little bit better now 🙂

    I think the advice about scheduling in down time is so important. I’ve just started (tentatively) planning an extended trip, and that’s something I definitely need to remember. Especially as I don’t think permanent travel is for me either – so I’ll definitely need a bit of homeliness at some point along the way, even if that’s just staying in one place for a fortnight instead of just a few days. Great advice! 🙂

    http://www.secondhandhedgehog.com

  • Reply Amber Primdahl July 19, 2014 at 12:20

    Great post Amanda! 🙂
    If you have time while in Canada, I would love to meet up with you!

  • Reply Liz from Passport Packed August 6, 2014 at 13:01

    Totally feel her! After 4 months of nonstop travelling in europe and living out of a backpack, I too was burnt out! Luckily for me I had a house to go to in Spain, so I was able to settle down, hang my clothes in a wardrobe and relax – while still being overseas.
    I love travel, but certainly can’t imagine being on the go forever!

    And OMG I must get to Berlin! Seem’s like it’s everyone’s favourite place!

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