Traveler Name: Sara Mitchell
Hometown: Calgary, Alberta
Occupation: Peace Officer
Countries I’ve traveled to otherwise: Canada, USA, Mexico, Cuba, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Italy, Vatican City, Romania, United Kingdom, Cayman Islands.
Why I travel: Being able to explore the world is an amazing privilege a lot of people don’t have. Being able to see landmarks and various cities seen in movies, tv, etc with my own eyes is an experience like no other. Experiencing different cultures, traditions and the food, OHH THE FOOD. Food rules my life more than I would like to admit and the world is exploding with flavour.
My favourite travel memory with FnEZ: Hiking Mount Rinjani in Indonesia. Anybody that has been on a FnEZ trip with me knows that I’m not the greatest hiker. I’m slow, I’m sweaty and I’m silent (internally cursing my fitness level). Rinjani was harder than anything I’ve ever done and it didn’t take long before I was wayyyy behind everyone else; but I was determined to make it to the top before sundown. 8 HOURS LATER I came around the corner to see my entire group clapping and cheering for me. I burst into tears and explained that today was Father’s Day and my father had passed away 3 months earlier and that’s why I had refused to quit. They all came together and gave me a tearful hug. If that doesn’t make you want to travel with strangers, I don’t know what will.
My most embarrassing/hilarious travel story: Breaking my toe in Nicaragua. I was lying in a hammock when I felt the sudden urge to get up and dance to a Cher song that was playing. Due to my high level of intoxication, I was unaware that my toes were caught in the webbing of the hammock and I fell very hard on to my face (and toes apparently). I don’t think I’ll feel the same about Cher ever again.
Top 3 items I can’t travel without: Sarong, camera and my snorkel mask; must always be prepared for a sporadic diving adventure.
What I love about traveling with FnEZ: The people! The leaders, the group members and the locals. Seeing how excited locals are to see the leaders again shows how special FnEZ is. The leaders go above and beyond to respect the countries and show the locals so much love. I’ve made so many friends with the FnEZ leaders and group members that don’t end the minute the trip is over. I can only hope that I’m allowed to keep traveling with FnEZ after I surpass the age limit 😉
Next bucket list item I need to check off: Going to New Zealand and seeing Hobbiton and Mount Doom (Mount Ngauruhoe) in person. I’m a slight Lord of The Rings nerd.
My future travel plans: I’m dying to go on the 40-day Philippines trip in March. To be able to snorkel with whale sharks is mind blowing. Also, all the amazing scuba diving spots don’t hurt as I am secretly a fish.