I'm equally as proud of my adventures as I am my writing career, so I had to separate the two. I lived in a truck for over five years and that was way before van life was a thing (and trucks are only slightly larger than coffins so it’s not the same!). During that time I slept in the woods, on beaches, in Walmart parking lots, in people’s backyards, wherever. I also did jobs that scared the living shit out of me. I’ve seen two people tragically die during my career as a white water raft guide (our boats were part of the rescue mission after arriving on the scene) and I’ve come close to death myself. Somehow I’m still here and deeply appreciate the roles of both risk and responsibility in the adventure called life.
The final chapter of my wilderness adventure involved a move to NYC where I led backpacking trips upstate and around the city (yes, camping in the city!). During that time lived in a cubicle made out of sheets in a Queens office building (next to a strip club!) with 12 other instructors, one shower, a tiny kitchen, and no real privacy/ We had to walk around with headlamps after 11 pm and some slept on the roof in tents. After that job I worked props and set dressing in the NYC film industry for many years, during which time I survived a steam pipe explosion and three all-out wars with bed bugs. In 2009, I bought a one-way ticket to South America with hardly any money and zero plans. I spent nearly 8 months in Argentina, Chile, and Brazil. I couch-surfed with complete strangers, but I also WOOFF’ed on an organic strawberry farm, climbed some of the scariest routes of my life in Patagonia, and taught English in Chile without really knowing Spanish.
I studied in Sweden, graduated from the University of Montana, worked and lived in California, Wyoming, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Vermont, Washington, NYC, LA, Spain, and France, which is where I’m kinda settled now. I married a Frenchie in 2020 after being in a police-enforced lockdown for months here in France. Marriage was NOT an adventure I ever foresaw in my plan, as I’ve cherished doing my own thing and being a bit of a sexual libertine, but I love it. I was the girl known for being perpetually single and even called “That chick who fucked a clown in Chile” in the comedy circles of NYC and LA. You can read about a lot of my bonkers adventures, especially in the travel section of The Daily Beast. I've been known to do Jesus Karaoke at the Jesus-themed amusement park, watch live births of weird dolls at the Cabbage Patch Kid Hospital, and travel Europe solely through tinder. My dating and love life are even crazier than my outdoor life if you can believe it and I’ve written about it all extensively... like going to a French sex club as a newlywed during a pandemic (masks and all!) and partying hard when France opened back up.
I live right on the edge of my comfort zone in the wilderness, in the world, and within myself. I get bored easily and am curious to a fault, so I always need a new challenge. The only way I know how to grow is to throw myself into things that scare me. Through much trial and error, I’ve finally learned how to be risky without being reckless and how to love without losing yourself.
(photo credit from home page: La Fille Renne)