Feliz international dia de mujeres

Happy International women’s day!

Why not treat myself? Because I can. I have been lucky to break stereotypes and gender discrimination and follow my dreams. Being a woman in today’s society in many ways is not much different than 1950s. The prejudice is just showed in different ways. From limiting girls’ education and career opportunities to teaching them to find flaws in their bodies using make up to cover up scars. I, for one, hate make up! I refuse to waste my time caking up my face when traveling! I love myself just the way I am! Furthermore, teaching them to grow up being scared of the world and not go to places alone. Unfortunately, many parts of the world and cultures practice these demeanoring sexist ideas. In the workplace, women work just as hard with equal or even better qualifications, but get paid less thab their male colleauges on top of being harrased and hit on for being a young woman. Women cannot walk streets without being wistled at or honked at. Regardless, being a woman is a gift. Breaking status quo and becoming independent, strong, fearless, and assertive in life are traits all girls should be taught. Lucky for me, I could care less what society thinks. My favorite quote from a song: “kuch to log kahenge, logo ka kaam hai kehna, chodo beqaar ke baaton mein, kahin beet na jaayr raina.” (people will talk, it is their job to talk, forget useless talks/gossip, don’t let the rain pass.” My mission is to inspire young girls to be who they want to be in life, and nit be scared. I know so many women who are afraid to go anywhere alone, and I want them to know, si se puede. Yes you can! I make friends almost everywhere I go, and I have met so many solo female travelers from all over the world! Fear is a perception. I feel safer on the road walking alone at night here in Ecuador than my own neighborhood back “home” where creepy people stalk young girls. Being a woman is a gift, and also a challenge. We think about things men do not have to worry about. That just makes us stronger. Happy international women’s day!

The skin of an actual anaconda! Be fearless and go in the direction of your dreams. Life is too short and time too valuable to waste. People are like aren’t you scared? When I first went on solo backpacking trip to Europe few years ago, everyone tried to stop me. Just like my family kept me from going to Johns Hopkins, best school on the planet for public health at the time. Women face such crap in life. I was like I do not care what anyone thinks, and started researching solo travel and backpacking. From there, there has been no looking back! My parents are no longer shocked when I tell them my plans. Friends and family know me as the adventerous one! When people tell me they want their daughters to grow up to be like me, I feel humbled and a sense of responsibility to be a good role model to the new generation. The shy little girl grew up to be an outgoing wanderer. I still surprise myself everyday. Solo traveling or backpacking in general teaches so much! I highly recommend everyone, especially women, to embark on a journey at least once in their lives. I see it as an investment in personal growth!

the view of Quito from the window. Que bonita

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