About

About Me

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Hi! My name is Megan and I’m a 27 year old self proclaimed travel addict. Welcome to my blog. I began traveling about 10 years ago when I went on my first international trip to Zambia as a volunteer for an educational AIDS awareness program.  From that moment travel became my number one priority, with everything else taking a backseat. This “do whatever it takes” approach to travel has taken me all over the world (12 countries spanning across 5 continents to be exact). It has also prompted me to make some interesting life choices such as selling my laptop during finals week in college to buy a plane ticket to Nicaragua, becoming an international flight attendant, serving as a mule to smuggle goods into Brazil, teaching English in Vietnam and even donating my eggs to fund some of my travels… just to name a few.  Stayed tuned for stories, tips and advice from my ridiculous travel escapades.

About the Blog 

The purpose of this blog is to help me to stay connected to my one true passion, travel. As a newly wed to a Brazilian citizen and the extenuating circumstances of the U.S. Immigration process, I’m not at liberty to travel as I please while waiting out the Green Card process. Thus, once again I find myself living in my hometown of Jacksonville, FL. I plan to use this blog as a platform to share my travel stories, provide tips and advice on the places I’ve been as well as advise my fellow gypsy souls on how to see your current city through traveler’s eyes and discover culture where ever you are for all those times when travel may not be an option. (Hey, it’s cheaper than therapy)

About the Name

 Mary Bendina

Gypsy Roots is a tribute to my late grandmother, Mary Bendina O’connell, who was born in 1927 of Russian and Austrian immigrants. It has been speculated that her father (the Russian) may have been a descendant of gypsies from Eastern Europe. Although it has never been proven, it could explain why my grandma wanted to be an archaeologist, uncovering ancient ruins in exotic destinations all over the world, during an era when most women’s biggest aspiration was to marry into a wealthy family. However, two little things called the Great Depression and WWII didn’t make travel very accessible, especially for women. My grandma’s dreams finally fell flat when she met and married my grandpa and settled into her new role as a navy housewife. None the less, she always beamed with pride when retelling her childhood dream, proud of herself for just having had the vision. As a result, my grandma was always my biggest supporter throughout my travels while other family members were more concerned with when I would settle down and get a job with health insurance. I’m sure if Mary Bendina O’connell had been born just a few decades later, she would have been a world traveler herself. So whether connected through actual gypsy blood or just kindred gypsy spirits, this blog is an ode to her.