A few weeks ago I met Amanda at the My Way Hostel in Dubrovnik, Croatia and knew right away that I wanted to interview her for my blog. Little did I know that she would change my travel “plans” and guide me towards adventures that would have never happened otherwise. When I found out she was from the U.S. we immediately became friends. After introducing each other and talking about where we had traveled so far we decided to go for a walk and explore the west side of Dubrovnik. Amanda and I walked and talked for hours about life, passion, tiny homes, books, our families, etc. We found a great little spot along the coast to watch the sunset.
Over the next few days, we made new friends at the hostel and walked around Dubrovnik’s old town.
We also searched for the Game of Thrones filming locations and found a few!
Another adventure in Dubrovnik was exploring an abandoned hotel, Hotel Belvedere. Before being bombed during the war in 1991, it was Dubrovnik’s most luxurious hotel.
The first day I met Amanda, she informed me of her Halloween plans to travel to Transylvania and go on a tour of Bran Castle, aka Vlad “the impaler” Dracula’s home, followed up by an after party. It sounded like a good time to me, so I decided to meet her in Brasov and join in on her plans in Romania.
After the halloween party our travel plans diverged and she left for Turkey while I stayed in Romania and hiked theFăgăraș Mountains! Here are her answers to the questions I asked her. I hope you enjoy learning more about Amanda!
=Name: Amanda Beckley
=How did we meet?: At a hostel in Dubrovnik
=Where were you born? Indiana, U.S.
=Where did you grow up? Indiana, U.S.
=Where do you live now and why? Everywhere and nowhere, I finally made the decision to be a nomad and simply live.
=Tell me a little more background information about yourself? (for example about your childhood and or life in general. Anything you want to add about yourself)
I grew up in a small Indiana farming town with five brothers and sisters, I am number 4 of 6. Growing up with so many brothers and sister was always crazy and chaotic but I loved every minute of it! My grandparents lived within walking distance so I spent a lot of time playing at their house and eating fresh from the oven cookies, every kids dream! After high school I went to college and began work in a factory. After seven years of being unhappy, working in the same factory and going to school for a degree I didn’t enjoy, I finally made the decision to live my dreams. I am very close with my family, which is a big reason I never left my small town, this is very typical of small towns, you are born there, you live there you die there, people rarely leave. Which is why it came as such a shock to most people that I had decided to break free of the cage and travel to world. And here I am!
1) Define Passion (non-romantic passion)
– Passion is the one thing(s) in the world that you do for you, because it makes you happy and free. The thing that allows you to be “you” and not the “you” that society says you should be.
2) List 3-5 of your passions:
– spending time/playing with my nieces and nephews
3) In your own words, what does it mean to be successful?
– Success for me is not measured by your bank account it is measured by happiness. If you go to bed at night and get up in the morning looking forward to the day ahead, because you enjoy the things you do and the people surrounding you, then I would say you have achieved success.
4) What does being happy mean to you and or define happiness?
– Happiness for me, is very closely tied to success. I will go a little further in saying happiness is not only enjoying the things you do as far as making a living to support yourself but also having the ability to let go of the the things/people that do not make you happy.
5) What is/are the most important thing(s) in life?
– my family
6) What is your biggest accomplishment in life and/or what else do you wish to accomplish in life?
– You’re looking at it! My biggest accomplishment was finally saying “no” to the things in my life that were not only not making me happy, but actually making me miserable, and finally following my dreams of travel.
7) Short-term goals?
– Continue to travel the world for the next eight months, experiencing the culture and the people. To learn and grow everyday.
8) Long-term goals?
– A continuation of my short-term goal as well as building a tiny house and living a minimalist lifestyle. And possibly become a vegetarian.
9) Favorite quote(s)?
– “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~ Mark Twain
10) If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be and how would you suggest changing it?
– Hate. This is an extremely hard mindset/emotion/ignorance to change, travel is in my opinion the best way to change this mindset. When traveling you will find that we are all just people (both good and bad), we all bleed red, we all have hopes and dreams, loved ones and worries. We are all different and yet the same, we just need to open our minds and our hearts to “difference”. Travel has a way of doing that.
11) What is your philosophy on life?
– Let your smile change the world, don’t let the world change your smile.
12) Why do you travel?
– I travel because it makes me happy. I no longer dread going to bed at night or getting up in the morning, because I finally said “yes” to what makes me happy.