Introducing Women Wanderers
[Above: Me daydreaming of a life of wandering, in Suzhou, China. Major photo creds to my dad!]
It all started a couple months ago, sipping martinis with a dear friend. We were talking about life in that flowing way that happens late at night with someone who's seen you at your best and worst.
She asked me: "So who are your heroes, anyway?"
I named some artists, authors, some people known for thinking unconventionally (and living that way, too)—people like Jack Kerouac or Andy Warhol.
"You didn't name any women," she laughed.
I had noticed that, too. And it felt shitty.
Obviously I admired many women: My Grandma, for example, or Frida Kahlo. But when she asked me about the heroes I wanted to live like, the ones who were influencing my art, I realized the female names I knew suddenly thinned to almost nothing. (Kahlo, a warrior for another culture, felt like an appropriated answer, you know?!)
See, I desperately wanted to add a female explorer to my list. A woman who had made a life of chasing adventure to each corner of the world. But it dawned on me in my stammering answer that I didn't know any.
I was embarrassed. And I knew I had to fix my ignorance.
So, the next day, I made an extra-strong espresso and got to work. I looked for female globe trotters: Non-male heroes I could look to when I hoped for the future (and envisioned my own).
I caught myself thinking "Well why the hell don't we all know of a Jill Cousteau as well as Jacques Cousteau? She must exist!"
She does. And I'm betting she isn't well-known to you either. That's where this new series comes in. About once a month, I'll devote a post to a badass babe who embodies the spirit of travel and adventure. I'm calling them Women Wanderers. Let's know them. Let's celebrate them. Most of all, let's become them ourselves.