By Alex Patton
Selly Gherardi is 26 years old and proudly calls herself a ‘provincial girl’ who tries to turn her big dreams into reality: living on travel and living traveling. She left home in 2012 but admits that although she was educated and grew up with the idea of a permanent job, home and family, it actually gave her anxiety, because at her age everyone wanted to make it happen but she felt that there was something missing. So she bravely set off to embark on a new life of daring adventure!
Since I was 21 years old.
I have visited European, Asian and African countries.
Because traveling makes me different, a better person. It has made my life better and I know extraordinary people who have a lot to teach me. I travel because I love to know who is different from me, because I’m curious because I love the smile of people that welcome me in their land as a guest. And traveling gives meaning to my life.
When I travel I feel alive and it is not a feeling that I get from many people these days. When I travel I feel part of the people I am visiting and try to dress like them, eat the same things that they eat and to participate in their culture and everyday life. When I see the airport in the distance from my car I have a spontaneous smile on my face and my feet chuckle because they cannot wait to reach the gate and fly away. I feel a bit like a child discarding a new toy; excited, happy, eager to take on something new. When I travel I feel as if my whole body is broken down to compose again but in a completely different way.
I have always met different people. Some tourists and some travellers. Everyone teaches me something. Some to be different, better. Others have taught me not to be like them.
When I was in Malaysia we went into the jungle, specifically to Kuala Gandah, to visit a centre where they took care of elephants that were orphaned or mistreated by poachers. At the end of the visit they took us into the river with an elephant of 8 years to be able to wash and massage him with the stones of the river. It relaxes them a lot. Establishing a relationship with such an animal, which is my favorite, is one of those most beautiful experiences I’ve ever experienced. Being able to caress, hug and kiss it was wonderful. We played in the river spraying water.
I pay my travels doing web content for some customers, who are also social media managers of some commercial activities working with their social networks. I am a tour guide so I am also paid to take people on the road. I’m hired to write advertising articles for some brands on my blog. I can do it also anywhere in the world. All I need is my cell phone and laptop. If someone wants to hire me for an online job, while I’m on the other side of the world I can do it without problem and at any time.
Where are you planning to go next?
My next trips will be Budapest in November. I’ve a group trip to Kenya in February where I will bring some of my readers on my trip with me, then I will travel around Italy and finally, I’m planning my first 21-day trip around the South East Asian only with a backpack and without having booked accommodation and travel. It will be a trip to discover Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand, a country where I will return for the second time.
My favourite trip was in February 2018 when I left for Asia to discover Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and the Phi Phi Islands. In particular, when I arrived in the Thai province of Kanchanaburi with the train that crosses the well-known railway of death. In Italy I never took trains or other public transport, so the idea of arriving in town and taking a train that crossed the jungle and was built during the war by slaves made me very anxious.
Taking a train in Thailand never occurred to me before not even from a distance. This train gave me a taste of everyday life. It was really interesting and the view from the window incredible: rice fields, the jungle; public transport without doors, windows and air conditioning. This experience changed my life because I faced many fears that were part of me like the language barrier, the fear of taking a train I’ve never seen before. I had many doubts but I threw myself into it and left. In the tourist guides it is not explained that in order to see the death railway you had to take the train or get there by river raft (river kwai). This trip showed me that I am brave and that I had to focus on my blog, adventure and on a low-cost budget.