Travelling Into Self

By Marshelle Haseley | Photos courtesy of  Tara Bradshaw

In the process of traveling and interacting with places, spaces and faces- we discover and rediscover ourselves- unearthing some of the deepest parts of our inner beings. From climbing Dunn’s River Falls here in Jamaica with friends, traveling to Paris with a lover- or taking a solo “Cafe crawl through Amsterdam” there may be some built-in knowledge that without a doubt, apart from being in awe at what we may see each time we travel- our soul feels the enriching value of each journey. From departure to destination there is a knowing that the experience of these new spaces and views, people, food, fragrances in the winds, and trees- will be golden soul food.
Panache Magazine had a quick talk with Tara Bradshaw, a soul so fed by the thrill and wonder of travel that she works as the E-Commerce & Business Development Manager at Trafalgar Travel Limited.

When asked about when Tara realized she was a wanderer, she exclaimed “From birth!”  She explained that her mother was a flight attendant for over 30 years, and quite a few of her family members are in the travel industry.  “I was on a plane before I could walk.”  As life always has it, people of like minds seem to always find each other- so Bradshaw finds herself surrounded by people who are just as passionate about travel as she is.
Difficult as it was to choose, Tara had to tell us three of her all time favourite places.  “I’ve loved almost everywhere I’ve visited.  The perfect trip to me involves great food, beautiful architecture and scenery, walkable or easy transportation options, and a variety of things to do. If I had to choose based on those, I’d say my current top three favourites are Rome, Italy, Ho Chi Minh/ Saigon in Vietnam and Budapest. Each location clearly had its own charm and entangled impact on her soul- she was torn by not including “Bangkok, Barcelona, and Hong Kong. And and and…(haha)”.

Finally, we got to the most powerful question- which defines the concept of Traveling into Self. We asked Bradshaw to tell us about one magical experience she had that impacted her soul in a profound way. One that she probably would not have had if she did not travel to that specific place, at that specific time.  Something that seemed almost serendipitous. She could immediately tell which trip gave her that experience and stated- “I follow several travel accounts on Instagram, and one night I happened to see a post about a mistake fare to Beijing.  I immediately opened my browser, went to the airline site and booked my flight without even knowing if I had the vacation time to go.  I ended up taking my very first solo trip, all the way to China. It was an absolutely incredible trip and it totally opened my eyes to the joys of solo travel.  It came at a point in my life where I really needed something like that, to reinforce that I was self-reliant and capable. It was a chance to challenge myself in a completely unfamiliar country, to not let fear stop me, to soak in a new culture, and to truly appreciate the journey.
Every aspect of that trip lined up perfectly from start to finish, and I am constantly grateful for the opportunity.  I’m also now addicted to solo trips!”
The experience described by Tara exemplifies how experiences such as travel can highlight or solidify things we always knew about ourselves- and sometimes helps us find where we truly belong.
When wrapping up my chat with her, I inquired about her next destination- “I’m headed to Toronto and Montreal in a few hours!  I love Toronto (despite the cold).  It’s a city that’s so diverse, with fantastic food, friendly people, and vibrant neighbourhoods.  There’s always something new to discover there.  I’ve always wanted to visit Montreal as it seems to tick so many of my required travel boxes as well!  Canada is also celebrating their 150th anniversary this year, so I’m sure there will be lots of activities going on.”
Mark Twain renowned writer expressed that “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bow-lines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails…
Explore. Dream. Discover.”|P

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