‘If you feel it, do it. You don’t need a reason.’ – Fran.
What does ‘to travel’ mean to you Fran?
For me it means to learn, grow as a person and share with others. Travel saved my life and gave me a purpose.
Who/what empowers you to travel?
The fact that you can just be yourself when you travel. Wherever you live, you have a label: you are a poor person, a rich person, a student, a housewife, etc. I didn’t felt comfortable with that. Now I’m just a traveller, a wanderer.
Also, when you grow up, everybody tells you: This is the world, you are supposed to live it this way. I want to go beyond those limits.
Special Memories on the road?
I have a bunch!!! With 35 countries under my belt…but I will tell you one of them.
I spent my birthday in New Zealand and the hostel prepared a party just for me. During the day, my hostel mates gave me gifts and we went to the beach to celebrate. The thing is, it was my first solo travel and I met a lot of people and made new friends. There were a bunch of solo travellers that become friends for life. Two years later I went backpacking to Europe and they all came to Berlin to see me and we spent a few days together. To this day I am still in touch with my roommates, imagine that!
Most incredible encounter with a local?
I was working at a hostel six years ago in New Zealand and there was a regular called Peter who loved mingling with travellers. We met every Tuesday and went for drinks. He showed me around Auckland to the not very touristic spots. We still keep in touch to this day!
Anything shocked you on your travels?
Egypt is one of my favorite destination, but it shocked me in good and bad way.
Once I was wearing a knee length dress and everybody was staring at me. The same with my hair, I’m a natural blonde and everybody was staring at me, men and woman. It was very uncomfortable.
I was amazed by the culture… so different from everything I have ever seen before.
Women have such different role in society. For me its all about being free and do what you want.
You know the role of women in muslim countries?
Well…. maybe not all of them…but in Egypt there is also a lot of sexual harassment and violence against women but I am still was very much in love with certain things… like Ramadan, people praying altogether and you can just sit down and hear through speakers how they pray. It was magical and all the history. I actually like Lawrence of Arabia which is a very old movie just because it’s reminds me of Egypt.
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