About Her Quirky Journey

Her Quirky Journey is a travel blog run by a twenty-something American named Marilyn who loves long-term traveling. I post about my unique and quirky travels, helpful travel tips, advice, experiences, and much more! I am always brutally honest and provide my readers with eye-opening and sometimes downright wild stories. My tales are almost guaranteed to make you laugh (or at least smirk!) while simultaneously teaching you a thing or two about the world we both are living in!

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But, how did all of this begin?

Right before graduating university, I’d realized I didn’t want anything to do with “careers.” In fact, I loathed it and loathed the idea of actually starting to work at a mundane desk job. The most obvious way of doing that for me was to work as an English teacher.

I wasn't totally sold on the idea. It sounded way too easy and good to be true, not to mention nerve-wracking. Then, the idea of Thailand was thrown in the air. Once I looked up pictures of the country, I was immediately sold. After graduation and the summer, in October, 2014, I embarked on my first international flight to Thailand.

I taught English in Thailand for six months and absolutely loved (almost) every minute of it! However, those societal (and familial) expectations loomed and lingered over my head. So, I went home after Thailand, applied for jobs teaching children from lower income families, and got a job in San Jose, California.

I arrived in San Jose in the beginning of July, 2015. After just a week of learning about the job and being in San Jose, the itch to travel abroad grew and was too intense to ignore. Yes, that's right-- just one week was enough! I ditched the entire idea of working in San Jose and applied for a job teaching English in South Korea. Within days, I landed one! In just one month, I gathered my paperwork for the job (criminal background checks, etc.) then jet off to Sejong, South Korea!

In September, 2015, I flew to South Korea and started my second teaching English jobs. After leaving my job abruptly because of a tyrannical boss, I discovered the power of teaching English online and moved to Vietnam! In Ho Chi Minh City, I taught on my computer and lived there for 7 months.

After Vietnam, I moved to Japan for 3 incredible months, all while still teaching on my computer. After a pitstop home, I moved to Prague in the Czech Republic, where I lived for a whopping 1.5 years!

Eventually, I tired of the teaching English online gig and decided to do the real thing in Shenzhen, China.

Me and just a few of my students in Shenzhen, China!

Me and just a few of my students in Shenzhen, China!


Why do I Travel Full-Time?

I have fallen deeply in love with travel and have no urge or desire to stop. Travel has given my life excitement and joy that living a "typical" American life couldn't possibly give me. I love that I have a lifestyle where I can live and travel abroad, work, and enjoy my life and the world around me. 

I suddenly lost my mom when I was 25 years old on July 20th, 2017. Easily, the worst day of my life and months afterwards were murky and dark. However, traveling helped keep guide me back to some sort of normalcy in my life, not to mention happiness and excitement. If it wasn’t for my nomadic lifestyle, I don’t think I’d have survived that ordeal. Traveling reminded me just how fragile and precious life is, that nothing is promised, and that we all need to simply enjoy the life we’re given in the best ways we can.

If you couldn't tell already, I love traveling and talking to anyone about my travels who is interested! So far, I have lived in 7 countries (USA, Thailand, South Korea, Vietnam, Japan, Czech Republic, and China), but have been to twenty-eight countries altogether: the USA, Canada, Thailand, South Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Japan, Taiwan, Poland, Croatia, Spain, Hungary, The Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, Serbia, Montenegro, Romania, Bulgaria, Hong Kong, Cambodia, and China.

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What Am I like personally?

In a word, I’m quirky! I consider myself to be an open-minded, brutally honest, sarcastic, fun-loving, optimistic, and smiling-through-it-all person. I love to travel (can you tell?) and just overall enjoy life. I’m a person who honors honesty and trust.

On top of the aforementioned traits, I’m also bubbly, adventurous, and outgoing. Nothing peaks my interest more than food and I'm constantly on the hunt for a good meal. Exercising is important to me, whether it's yoga, running, or weightlifting. While living here in China, I’m enjoying learning Mandarin. Writing is also one of my biggest passions (I do have a blog, after all!).

Why did I start a blog?

My two biggest passions in life are simple: travel and writing. On top of those, I also thoroughly enjoy helping people in any way that I can. So, why not write about my wonky experiences abroad and provide some guidance (and entertainment!) for aspiring travelers as well? But, instead of writing a typical “travel is perfect and amazing for everyone!” type of blog, I figured I would add my own personal “quirky” twist to it and always keep my experiences and tips enticing, relevant, and brutally honest!

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Thank you ever so much for stopping by! Don't be afraid to contact me for any questions or comments here!

Current location: Shenzhen, China