My Year of Adventure: The Prequel

I’m a solo female travel blogger attempting 12 trips in 12 months as part of my year of adventure. Every story has a beginning, here’s mine!

My Year of Adventure: The Prequel

“Why you no have baby?” the man queried, leaning in intently across my desk.

I wasn’t sure how to answer this question.  Heck, I wasn’t even sure I understood it.

“Why I no have baby?” I repeated quizzically, trying to figure out what my client was asking.

His bulging brown eyes stared back at me, keen on getting his point across.

“You. No. Have. Baby! Your. Eggs. Go. Poof! Poof! Poof!” he explained as he gestured wildly, shooting his fingers out while alternating hands to demonstrate the “poofing” sound and corresponding demise of my unborn children.

I stared back at him shocked, unsure how to respond. Two seconds ago we had been talking about the status of his personal injury case and suddenly my reproductive system was in peril?

I was 22. That was the first time a stranger panicked over my ability to procreate, but it would not be the last.

Inevitably, I started to wonder if something was wrong with me. Questions like, “How late is too late to reproduce?” and “should I be putting my eggs on ice?” plagued my thoughts. Flooded with fears of pending physical expiration and a major case of FOMO, I trucked on throughout my mid-to-late twenties.

Before I knew it, I was 28. I’d kissed many a frog, yet none of them had miraculously turned into a prince. What’s worse, the never-ending search for the elusive “one” left me feeling emotionally depleted and generally devalued.

After one particularly slimy toad wasted 6 months of my now dwindling youthful years, I decided to hell with the frogs. I wanted my prince. The real thing. No transformation required, no build-a-man need apply. And in the meantime, until the right candidate came along, I was going to invest my time into the one person I had been neglecting all along–me.

That’s when it hit me. Why not travel? Better yet, why not travel in excess? I was about to be 29, giving me exactly one year to make sure my twenties went out with a bang, not with a whimper.

Circumstances were ideal for taking the leap. I had just switched from private to nonprofit law, with more vacation days and observance of all federal holidays. To give you an idea of how rare this is in the legal field, I once worked at a law firm where the staff had to be in on Christmas Day. It was the saddest Christmas party you’d ever seen.

My finances sucked, but I had just booked flights to Amsterdam and Denver in the weeks prior for $400 and $120 roundtrip, respectively, cheap enough to make me think I could actually do this. I could take a risk. I could book a flight first and figure out the rest later.

And maybe, just maybe, if done right I could actually come out of this financially stable and with assets a 30 year old woman should have, like a retirement and savings account. Granted I already had the latter, but it didn’t really count since there was technically nothing in it.

So off I went. I announced my plans on Facebook, making my relationship with travel official, and my year of adventure began! First stop, Greece.

Want to learn more about how I afford my travels? See an extended clip from my interview with ABC News here

2017-07-09T02:03:30+00:0017 Comments


  1. Tracy May 13, 2017 at 2:16 pm - Reply

    I probably would have been arrested if that stranger spoke to me. I am in a similar boat as I just turned 30 with no Prince. I work/travel for me. I would love to travel more and will check out the interview. Thank you for such an honest perspective and great post!

    • Jen on a Jet Plane May 14, 2017 at 7:20 pm - Reply

      Thank you Tracy! It definitely took self restraint on my part in responding haha. I’m glad you’ve found fulfillment through travel too and hope you get to go on many more adventures!

  2. Alina May 13, 2017 at 2:48 pm - Reply

    Those rude questions at 22, I understand you so well! In my country most people haven’t graduated yet at that age, and only few have children, and by accident and not much choice…
    I am 30 now, happily married, and once in a while someone asks why I don’t have children yet (this question actually becomes more often heard than before marriage!). Or worse, when I go to see a doctor (to get some fancy shot for my vacation!) most assume, I am in fertility treatment!!! Maybe one day I will be an old mother, but at least a well travelled one 🙂

    • Jen on a Jet Plane May 14, 2017 at 7:23 pm - Reply

      I can imagine the pressure is even more pronounced when you’re married because everyone naturally assumes that’s the next step. And fertility treatments?? Hopefully you’re years away from that! Thanks for your support Alina!

  3. Julia May 13, 2017 at 4:29 pm - Reply

    I love your attitude! Don’t let people’s opinions get you down, and have fun in Greece! 🙂

    • Jen on a Jet Plane May 14, 2017 at 7:23 pm - Reply

      Thank you Julia! And I had so much fun I’m going back at the end of the month to explore the Greek Islands!

  4. Alissa May 13, 2017 at 4:56 pm - Reply

    What a great gift to yourself!! Enjoy your year of travel, and hopefully many more years of travel! And props to you for recognizing the importance of nurturing your relationship with yourself. Seems like you’re embarking on this journey at a great time, I hope it’s exactly what you need 🙂

    • Jen on a Jet Plane May 14, 2017 at 7:25 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much Alissa! It’s been the best decision, so far it’s been an incredible year! I can’t wait to see the person I am when it’s all over and I agree, hopefully it’s just the beginning of many more years of travel 🙂

  5. Sara May 13, 2017 at 5:52 pm - Reply

    I am 30. I have been living abroad on and off since I was 22. And I wouldn’t change it for the world. This past year was the first time I had a partner to move to a new country with me. We don’t have any plans to marry or have kids, just keep living and working abroad and traveling every chance we get 🙂 traditional life isn’t for everyone, you do you!

    • Jen on a Jet Plane May 14, 2017 at 7:27 pm - Reply

      That’s wonderful Sara! I wish you and your partner the best of luck in this next chapter. And I completely agree, sometimes you gotta go at your own pace regardless of the social timelines 🙂

  6. Laura May 13, 2017 at 6:01 pm - Reply

    Ooh! What’s next after Greece?

    • Jen on a Jet Plane May 14, 2017 at 7:25 pm - Reply

      I’ve done Florence, Aruba and the Grand Canyon so far, heading to Iceland, Morocco and South of France before the year is up!

  7. Chandrika May 13, 2017 at 6:07 pm - Reply

    Loved reading this 😀 Looking forward to your adventures!

  8. C-Ludik May 15, 2017 at 4:42 pm - Reply

    Wow, that’s wonderful ! For sure, never let people’s opinions get you down ! Those rude questions, I understand you so well ! My boyfriend and I do not have any plans to marry or have kids. We just, keep living and working and of course traveling every chance we get around the world 🙂 Looking forward to your adventures !

  9. Sid June 7, 2018 at 2:34 pm - Reply

    I’m late on this travel train but…You are my role model 😍. It’s crazy how so many people go though this thought process to discover that the one person you’ve been ignoring is yourself, yet it feels like you are the only one going through this transformation.

    Glad to get your perspective. Looking forward to more of your travels!

    • Jen on a Jet Plane June 9, 2018 at 12:25 am - Reply

      I appreciate that Sid! And completely agree, I think it’s because we reach the realization when we already feel isolated, so it’s hard to imagine others are feeling the same way. So glad you can relate and are motivated by the message!

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