LOCAVORista is the amazing, curious and always adventurous wife of thinkCHUA.  She was born and raised in Minnesota and graduated from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse majoring in Recreation Management and Leisure Studies (yes, that’s a real degree) with a German minor.  Upon graduation she headed west to Healdsburg, California and lived in wine country for six months as she served as one of the city’s recreation interns.  She has since worked for three different cities providing recreation programming, which includes; farmers markets, outdoor concert series, parades, soccer leagues and uniquely Minnesotan winter warming houses. She loves recreation and leaving her job was undoubtedly the hardest preparation she did for the trip.

LOCAVORista was lucky to grow up in a family that loved to travel and traveled well together.  By the time she graduated college she had traveled extensively throughout Europe, worked at the United Kingdom’s largest artificial ski resort, hiked the Inca trail to Machu Picchu and had her blonde hair admired in Japan.

Where does LOCAVORista come from?

As some of you may remember locavore was the word of the year in 2007 for the Oxford American Dictionary and is defined as someone who eats food grown or produced locally.  I am very interested in food and cooking and I hope to focus on that as we travel.  Food, markets and local traditions surrounding food often defines a culture.  I hope to broaden the term locavore in my writing on this blog to all things local including the people and traditions.

What lead you to taking this adventure?

We had both talked long and hard about leaving our jobs to travel and soon thereafter the plan hatched for a trip around the world.  I am an experience seeker and a trip around the world will afford me all the experiences I can handle.  The more I travel the more I crave new experiences and it really felt like “now or never,” this was the time before we have a house, kids or other barriers to take off and live our biggest IF of all; what if we quit our jobs and traveled around the world?

How did you make the decision to do this?

As I mentioned in the previous question, it really felt like “now or never.” The decision was really made with the realization that many of the developing countries we wanted to visit are changing rapidly.  This is also the time to do the “hard travel” you just can’t do later in life.  I won’t be as interested in partaking in high altitude hikes, enduring Delhi Belly or long bus rides on unpaved roads to see the world’s wonders and learn about new cultures.  This is also the time in life where I feel the money I spend on travel will have the best return on investment as far as personal growth and a truly global education.

Do you think this trip will help you professionally?

In short, YES.  I think that it will make me a more well-rounded, aware and quick-thinking individual.  There is a lot of experience to be gained on the road and I plan to apply all the lessons I learn in my next professional endeavor.

What will you miss most while traveling?

People.  I am a people person, I get my energy from people, my support group is my family and friends and on the road I know I will miss the many familiar faces that surround me at home.  I will, of course, meet new people on the road, but will only be with them for short periods of time making it hard to replace any of the relationships I enjoy at home.

What are you looking forward to most?

To choose exactly how we spend all of our time, everyday will be a new adventure of our own making.  As far as places I anticipated prior to departure India and Nepal were at the top of my list and didn’t disappoint. So many places have really WOWed me along the way and I can’t wait to continue to see what surprises lie ahead.

What is your biggest fear about this trip?

There are so many unknowns and the majority of them are out of our control, so you can’t really spend your time worrying about them, but ultimately they probably amount to my biggest fear.

Fast forward, how will this adventure end?

Happily ever after…  I have no idea how it will end, but I hope we find a place and a purpose to build our future around.


2011 Photo FavoritesMandalayCambodia HighlightsJavanese WeddingDaliSabahNairobiManaliIguazu Falls





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