This traveller closed a deal on Skype while vacationing in Italy, ate alligator meat in China, and moved solo from Hong Kong to New York City. For these acts of bravery, she earns the title of Wanderer of the Week. Meet Joyce!
What I do when I’m not travelling (aka occupation): I’m an executive recruiter, otherwise known as a headhunter. I’ve been doing this for seven years and the job has helped fund my travels.
My next stop: I only arrived in the United States two years ago from Hong Kong, so a lot wandering this country still needs to be done. I’ve become mildly obsessed with Alaska, which followed a more intense obsession with Sarah Palin. I also wouldn’t mind wine tasting in Napa, hanging out in New Orleans, or drinking iced tea in Texas.
My wildest and craziest adventure was: I hiked the Samarian Gorge. It’s a 16k trail on the island of Crete in Greece. The hike was strenuous but beautiful. The “wild and crazy” part was when my sister and I arrived at the final rest stop on the trail, where we spot a group of Greek rescue workers hiking past carrying a heavy, long, package – which turned out to be a dead body.
Weirdest thing I’ve ever eaten or drank: Alligator meat in China. It did not taste like chicken.
I’ll never forget that time: I closed a deal for work, over Skype, while sitting at a cafe overlooking the Amalfi Coastline. Why can’t the view from my desk be like that every day?
Most memorable meal: On our first night in Rome, my sister and I wandered down the Via del Corso in search of a restaurant to celebrate our arrival. It looked like a tourist trap – you know, the smarmy waiters and the signs advertising free WiFi. I have no idea what the restaurant is called, and I most likely will never find it again – but it had the most amazing spaghetti carbonara I have ever tasted. The noodles were fresh and sprung at my taste buds. The sauce was creamy and rich, with the perfect ratio of carbonara to bacon. Washed down with red wine, accompanied by fresh bread, followed by tiramisu.
One thing on my bucket list is: Living in Tuscany or Italy for an extended period of time, cooking, drinking wine, and running through the vineyards. Coincidentally, I really enjoyed the movie Under the Tuscan Sun.
Three things I always pack: Running shoes – I run every wear I go.
Travel sized toiletries. All those samples that I get from Sephora go into my luggage so that I don’t have to choose between my luggage limit and my hair products.
Portable iPhone charger so I can take photos all day long.
After years of being debilitated with nausea after anything from 15 minute rides to the grocery store, to days out on a boat, I picked up this tip from a tour guide. It helped both my sister and I through long car journeys along the undulating roads of the Italian coastline. The same car ride to Positano that had both of us green in the face on the way there, became a relaxing 1.5 hours on the way back. I used to take motion sickness medication but it makes you drowsy, you can’t drink, and you can’t plan for every situation. The trick? Clench your fists, like you have a coin in each one. That’s it. It activates muscles in your wrist that help balance you out. It’s the same concept as wearing those motion sickness bands, but it’s natural and portable. Game changer.
Take photos of your passport and IDs. Keep them on your phone, and email them to your friends and family. Not only does this come in handy should you unfortunately lose your documents while abroad, but it’s also useful for all of those random, pesky times that you need it. Who really knows their passport expiry date from memory?
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