I believe I was born with a travel gene. My parents both started traveling internationally at an early age. My mother spent her 18th birthday exploring Europe and my father took family trips exploring Mexico and Ireland. My mom lived in both The Ivory Coast and Japan. When my parents were first married they spent months traveling around the world. As I child they taught me an appreciation for other cultures and the important things a person learns from the world in traveling. I was able to travel to both Japan and Mexico as a child. I have fond memories wandering a Japanese toy store looking at the Japanese Barbie Dolls, and playing in a park covered in cherry blossoms. In high school, I was given the opportunity to travel to both Panama and Costa Rica with a program called Global Challenge. Since then I have had a severe case of wanderlust.
Going into college I knew that I wanted to study abroad at some point and time. Unfortunately, that did not ultimately work out. I kept looking into various programs Creighton and the Catholic Volunteer Network had to offer. I have had many friends who have gone on the previous backpack journalism trips. Between facebook creeping albums in an attempt to live vicariously through pictures, or speaking to students if even just briefly about their experiences in either Uganda or the Dominican Republic, I knew that the program was something I needed to seriously look into.
After looking into the trip I decided that it was the opportunity of a lifetime. Though I knew nothing about video making or journalism, the chance to learn about a culture so different from my own was something I just couldn’t pass up.
Now, approximately 32 hours before I leave, I am looking at the clothes, medicine, cameras, and other backpack journalism essentials sprawled across my floor and I am quite honestly a little overwhelmed. So much to pack. So much unknown. I have been learning the ins and outs of making a documentary these past couple days and still have a lot to learn, but I know with practice and help, it will all come together.
I am unbelievably excited to start a new adventure. I can’t wait to board the plane and get there already!