My summer 2012 Adventure begins!

Let me go way back to 2009 when I took a vacation trip with one of my best friends (Stephanie) to Costa Rica. We stayed at a lovely resort, but I wanted to be more adventurous, so we did several excursions and day trips. One of which was to Nicaragua. I am quite honest in saying that before I went to Costa Rica, I had no idea where Nicaragua was. If you had asked me, I would have guessed it was somewhere in Africa. Surprise! It is in Central America.

Map of Central America

Map of Central America

Stephanie and I left our hotel very early one morning and took a comfortable tourist bus for several hours to the Nicargua border. (This part deserves it’s own blog post, so I will skip the details here and save it for another post!)

Once we were in Nicaragua we had breakfast, visited an active volcano, shopped in local markets, saw beautiful scenery and took a boat tour of many different islands. More so than the beauty of Costa Rica, I fell in love with the raw beauty of Nicaragua and the fact that it wasn’t invaded by tourists. It was still very in tune with it’s own culture.

Masaya Volcano, Nicaragua

Masaya Volcano, Nicaragua

Masaya Volcano, Nicaragua

Shari & Stephanie at Masaya Volcano, Nicaragua

When I returned from my week long vacation, I started talking about returning to Nicaragua to learn Spanish. At that time it was just a lot of talk though … something I would like to do … someday … when the time was right … when I had the money …

Oh yeah … and if I didn’t fall in love or have children … and if my mind didn’t change.

See where I’m going with this? Likely the same place many of your minds go. Oh, I sure would love to travel, but I have to do this first and then this, and then this always gets in the way! Sound familiar?

Over the past four years I have done my fair share of traveling. Many of my friends and family think that I always seem to be on vacation. It is not true! Besides the fact that I work very hard at my own business, so, so what if I am on vacation?! Don’t I deserve it just the same as the next hard working person? (my little rant)

I have traveled for vacation (Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Mexico, Bermuda, St. Pierre & Miquelon) and for work and/or volunteer purposes to Poland, Germany, Peru, Ecuador, Dominican Republic and Cuba. Pretty amazing when I stop and look at the list!

For the past four years, in the back of my mind, has always been a dream of going away to learn Spanish. I researched schools in Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras and lots of other Latin American areas. I even found a couple of schools that I thought would be perfect for me (La Mariposa Spanish School or San Juan Del Sur Spanish School), but I wasn’t ready to enrol because I still had too many ‘what ifs’ and ‘have to dos’, first. I still wasn’t ready to just go for it.

I’ve been on a journey of self discovery for the past 5 or 6 years and finally I have decided to do something for me … just for me … not for anyone else. For my health, for my sanity, for my pure enjoyment. Imagine what that feels like. Do you know what that feels like? Not many of us have ever done it! My heart is exploding with excitement!

(Insert happy dance to the tune of lovely merengue music!)

I am now very excited to announce that I am doing something for me! I am going away to study Spanish for 4-8 weeks!

Now that I’ve finally told everyone in my family, I am ready to start telling the world! I will be blogging regularly (at least twice a week) from now until September as I prepare, arrive, study and get to know the culture in beautiful Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic!

Map of Dominican Republic

Map of Dominican Republic

I hope that you’ll join me on my journey of self discovery and laugh your ass off at my adventures, misfortunes and life lessons!

This has taken me a long time to get the courage to do … there are two things I ask of you if you are reading and following along …

1. Please send me your support! Let me know that you are reading this, that you identify with what I am saying or that you had a good laugh with (or at) me. I won’t be offended! I’m sharing because I can and I want to! I do some pretty ridiculous things and share way more detail than most people expect, so fasten your virtual seat belt and hold on to live vicariously through the eyes of a 33 year old single blonde girl traveling to find herself!

2. If you know a woman who is on a journey of self discovery right now, or someone who wants to travel but is limited by her own ‘what ifs’, please pass my blog along and encourage her to read it. It is anonymous to read and I hope it will inspire someone along the way!

Let the fun begin!

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7 thoughts on “My summer 2012 Adventure begins!

  1. You go girl and take us with you! xoxox BTW, it’s Melanie. You took my beautiful picture years ago for Denise and her clothing designs. Remember. One of the nicest pics of me ever. Have fun, am envious all the way. Don’t leave anything out!

  2. Amazing Shari! Santo Dominigo is so interesting, and the history of DR is just as fascinating. You are going to have a wonderful, life changing adventure!

  3. I am so proud of you Shari! I wish so much I was going with you……..however my two amazing children would probably not be too happy if I left them for so long especially during summer vacation. Follow your dreams and your heart and enjoy every moment. Love you and will miss you but will be anxiously awaiting to hear about all of your adventures. xoxo

  4. Pingback: How to make a decision. Part 2. | I Picture The World

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