Each week, during the month of July, I'm interviewing and featuring world travelers whose adventurous spirits inspire us to keep exploring and experiencing the world. This week, I'd like to introduce Cyndi Rebelo.
1. Tell us about yourself!
2. Where do you currently live and what is your occupation?
Boston, MA- Program Coordinator at Earthwatch Instititute
3. What is the first country you traveled to internationally? What were your impressions?
My parents are from Portugal, so I started traveling internationally when I was 3. It was part of our lives to spend a month in the countryside of Portugal every few years. During a trip when I was 15, I really started to notice the concept of culture and became more interested in my heritage and learning Portuguese more fluently. I was not only struck by the differences between Portugal and the US, but the differences between country life and suburban life. The daily routine was so different than our lives back home. It was not only exciting, but I have memories that I will carry with me forever.
4. When did you first realize you were bitten by the travel bug?
I realized that I was bitten by the travel bug when I was 18 and on my first international trip without my parents. I decided to go to Peru to do volunteer work for three weeks. Everything was so new and I was completely out of my comfort zone. I was inspired and moved by the community I was working with. I loved every minute of it and when I returned home I couldn’t think or talk about anything else. I changed my major to International Studies that summer and haven’t looked back.
5. Do you have a travel mantra?
Good question…I guess my mantra would be “make it happen”. A lot of people tell me that they wish they could travel like I do, or tell me how lucky I am. I just decided to make it part of my life. There are a lot of factors involved with traveling (time, money, family), but I really feel like if you have a dream to travel, you can find a way to make it happen in a way that works for you. Not all travel has to be international or for weeks at a time. There are so many things that we haven’t seen in our own backyards.
6. If you could spontaneously pack up tomorrow and head anywhere in the world, where would you go and what would you do?
To be honest, I’ve had a dream to do a cross-country road trip in the US. I tried to do it once but my car broke down when I reached the Mississippi River! I would love to take two or three months to explore the states…not sure when I will have the chance again but this is a must!