Just another girl trying to find her place . . . all over the world.


Working at a Summer Camp Abroad

For those who read my last post, you know that I’ve been working at a summer camp for the past 5.5 weeks. There I met so many different people from all around the world! I worked in the kitchen as a dishwasher as I’m not too qualified to be a counsellor. In the kitchen staff was 4 Canadians (including me), 2 Mexicans, and 1 German. At the camp workers were from all over the world (Spain, Italy, America, Australia). Thanks to this job I now have very close friends in Germany, Mexico, and Italy and have places to stay when I travel to these countries. I now also have a travel buddy to go to Australia and Indonesia with!

I would definitely recommend getting a job at a summer camp if you are working abroad during the summer, either in the kitchen or for the camp. Working at a camp gives you somewhere to live, food, and an income. Plus it’s a great way to make friends. Here are some photos of my adventure there. (For those who are curious I worked at Camp Wabikon)



Quotes to Inspire You to Travel

“Look at you. You’re young. And you’re scared. Why are you so scared? Stop being paralyzed. Stop swallowing your words. Stop caring what other people think. Wear what you want. Say what you want. Listen to the music you want to listen to. Play it loud as fuck and dance to it. Go out for a drive at midnight and forget that you have school the next day. Stop waiting for Friday. Live now. Do it now. Take risks. Tell secrets. This life is yours. When are you going to realize that you can do whatever you want?”

“Forget all the reasons why it won’t work and believe the one reason why it will.”

“Wake up every morning with the thought that something wonderful is about to happen.”

“I think you can have anything you want. Find someone who has a life that you want and figure out how they got it. Read books. Figure out what you’re passionate about. Pick your role models wisely. Find out what they did and do it.”

“Doing what you like is freedom; liking what you do is happiness.”

“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your hearts. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.”

“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.”

“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself; I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”

“Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

“You’ll never leave where you are until you decide where you’d rather be.”

“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again.”

“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”

“A great deal of talent is lost to the world for want of a little courage. Every day sends to their graves obscure men whose timidity prevented them from making a first effort.”

“To laugh is to risk appearing a fool,
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out to another is to risk involvement,
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.
To place your ideas and dreams before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return,
To live is to risk dying,
To hope is to risk despair,
To try is to risk failure.
But risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.
The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing.
He may avoid suffering and sorrow,
But he cannot learn, feel, change, grow or live.
Chained by his servitude he is a slave who has forfeited all freedom.
Only a person who risks is free.”

“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born, and the day you find out why.”

“Devote yourself to an idea. Go make it happen. Struggle on it. Overcome you fears. Smile. Don’t you forget, this is you dream.”

“Life has its ups and downs. It can be both brutal and beautiful. You can hole yourself away to avoid life’s pain, but then the beauty seldom finds its way in. It’s only when you attempt to go where you cannot go, or do what you cannot do, that you can achieve what you are truly capable of doing. Sure, you might tumble. You might fall. So what? Take a chance. Go way out on the limb. Dare to try – even if it’s just a shot in the dark.”

“Those who fly solo are the ones with the strongest set of wings.”


I’ve Always Relied on the Kindness of Strangers

As crazy as it sounds, I have. I’m one of those people that believe that people are genuinely good, yes there are bad actions but no bad people.

My friend and I took a spontaneous road trip to Muskoka on Sunday for Canada’s day. We contacted so many people on CouchSurfing but no one was available on such short notice. So we decided to find 24 hour parking and just sleep in the car. We went to a Tiki Bar where we drank and danced the night away til a guy wanted to dance with my friend. When he found out we were sleeping in the car he would not have it, we were sleeping in his basement where he had a spare bed. Sure he may have wanted to sleep with one of us but in the end he showed us to the bed and left. We even got a tour of the city afterwards.

I’m not saying to stay with whoever you meet but be open to people and to new experiences. When you walk down the street smile at a stranger. When you’re at a grocery store say thank you to the person helping you.

The world is a big and beautiful place and too often we forget this. So next time you’re on your way to work or school or wherever, stop and look around for a second. Think about how lucky we are to be alive and how the Earth is perfectly positioned so that we can live.

I believe one of the most important things in life is not to be afraid. It’s good to be fearless and to see how far you can go.

I’ll let you in on my biggest fear. My biggest fear is that I will let fear stop me from doing things I love. That the fear of heights will stop me from seeing some wonders of the worlds. That the fear of being raped will keep me locked in the rest of my life. That the fear of being kidnapped will stop me from talking to strangers and making new friends.

It’s just that we have all these things that can help us see the world and have all these incredible experiences but the fear the media makes us feel prevents us from doing this.

Just get out there and stop being so scared of what you don’t know.

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Resources for Canadians Wanting to Work Abroad

So if you’re like me traveling around the world and want to make a few extra bucks these links are for you. But if you are trying to work and travel in one place these links will also benefit you.

1) SWAP With this program you choose a destination and the company helps you do everything, for a fee of course. Each location you apply to will have a different price so it’s hard to find out what exactly it is. With this payment it covers:

  • Visa forms and tips for applying
  • Cost of the visa
  • Information kit and everything you need before you leave Canada
  • Arrival orientation
  • Job postings, resume workshops, employer contacts
  • Accommodation boards
  • Help opening a bank account
  • Emergency support

So this is just a summary of what SWAP offers. In order to use this service you must be between the ages of 18-30 and live in Canada. Not only is this service for working but there also a few opportunities to volunteer!

2) Nomads Hostels This website posts job opportunities designed for backpackers, so people who do not plan to work for a long time. In order to see the job details you need to make an account. Just note that this website is for jobs in Australia and New Zealand only. You can either look at the jobs or get the Work Arrival Package. The Australian package includes:

  • 3 Nights ($369) or 6 Nights ($615) Accommodations
  • Airport transfer
  • Employment assistance and interview setups
  • Bank account (set up before leaving)
  • Tax file number
  • OZ sim card
  • Medicare setup assistance

The New Zealand package includes:

  • 7 Nights Accommodation
  • 7 breakfasts
  • Airport transfer
  • Welcome drink
  • Orientation
  • Employment assistance
  • Guide on traveling NZ
  • 24 hour emergency assistance
  • Sim card
  • 1 month luggage storage
  • Auckland tour
  • 1 hour internet access
  • Tour of Bay of Islands
  • from $499 NZ

So you can make a decision where you want to go to work and if either of the packages sound better than just searching for a job by yourself.

3) Jobaroo This job search website has a specific section for backpackers! These include jobs in the fields of fruit picking, hospitality, pearling, retail, and temp jobs. It offers job information for each field and when these fields will be needing more workers.

4) Travellers at Work This website offers job postings for travellers but in order to apply or see details you must buy a membership package. The prices are reasonable for what they offer. They even offer training packages to make you more likely to get a job. This includes farm/agriculture training or bar skills/cocktail course. Prices start at $79 AUS.

5) Smaller Earth This website offers volunteering, internships, and jobs abroad. It’s for countries all over the world with a variety of projects. The only work they offer is for Australia, China, or New Zealand.

I hope these links helped you. If you have any other links that you think will be helpful just post them in the comments.


Making Money on the Road

Before I start traveling I have made the decision to apply for a Working Holiday Visa in Australia. This allows me to work in Australia for 12 months, staying up to 6 months with each employer. But I will not be using this visa just to work. I’ll probably just get a part-time job and will spend most of it traveling Australia. Since I think exploring Australia will take longer than 3 months (because I want to take my time) I’m applying for this visa.

I also know that the cost of living in Australia is very high. or at least higher than Toronto, so that’s why it’s logical to work and earn money to stay in a more expensive country. After working here for 6 months, I will use the money I earned to travel more.

While in Australia I plan to keep my expenses at the bare minimum, meaning I’m going to have to make sacrifices to the way I usually spend money and live. I’ll probably share a room with someone so that my rent is a lot lower than if I had my own apartment. But like a normal girl, I know that there are always unexpected times when I’m going to have to spend money.

I want to try to start working in April, that way I would be working during the colder months and by the time my 6 months are up I’ll be traveling and it will be warmer. This is the plan I’m going for… Hopefully it all works out.

If you’re from Canada and want more information on Working Holiday Visas, click here.

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Overcoming My Fear of Planes

I was, for the longest time, terrified of planes. Just looking at them would make my anxiety skyrocket and I would sweat like there is no tomorrow. It’s been like this ever since I was a kid too. Going on any plane I would grip the seat handles until the plane had been up in the air for at least 20 minutes. But why was I scared? What about planes was leaving me paralyzed?

I make a decision the summer of 2011 that I didn’t wanna be scared anymore. There is nothing worse in life than allowing your fear to take over your life, and that’s what my fear of planes was doing. So I did some searching in my childhood to see if any traumatic events occurred to leave me scared of planes . . . and there wasn’t.

Sure there was the time we went to Bahamas and we bounced hard off the ground when landing but that wouldn’t do it, I was still gripping the seat when we were flying. It wasn’t my trip to Los Angeles because I was terrified and that was only two years ago.

I’m not scared of being in the air nor am I scared of crashing. It’s a fear I’ve never been able to understand. So I did some more research about planes and stumbled onto a website that I believe helped me find the courage to not be afraid any more.

First, it explains everything that goes on to a plane. It explains how they work and pretty much everything you need to know. Then it goes on the what turbulence is, which I believe is my biggest problem. Did you know turbulence is simply bumps in the sky, like when you go over bumps in the road? I didn’t! I thought it was the plane struggling to keep still! Just that helped me beyond everything.

This website was created by Captain Stacey Chance who has been a pilot for over 25 years. He created this course to help nervous flyers. If you want more information, click this link.

But if you’re still having problems with it, talk to your doctor. That’s what I did before finding this website. I went to my doctor and explained my problem to her and she prescribed me Ativan for my flights . . . the next ten flights to be exact.

So now I can go on flights without having a problem. Well I sweat a lot and I shake but that’s small compared to what used to happen. I don’t control that. I can now go up without gripping the seat and if there’s turbulence I just sit there because I now know what it is. I hope this website helps you as much as it helped me.