I’ve been writing under Foogo! for quite a few years, but I’ve been doing some brainstorming behind the scenes over the past year, and I’m proud to launch She Roams the World!
Let’s talk meaning. There’s a story behind every name, and meaning behind every decision. So here’s mine.
When I was young, I was possibly the most timid girl ever. I was scared to play musical chairs because I was afraid to get called out. Birthday parties scared me because of large crowds. I was afraid of insects, dogs, cats, pretty much any living creature including humans at certain points haha. When I was maybe 6-7 years old, I remember clinging so tightly to my dad in a dog park in China where he tried to put me in the centre of the dogs to tease me about my fear. Another year, I was positioned on a rock amidst fishes during a family snorkelling trip while I tried to smile for the camera. But you could see the obvious discomfort I was in. The stories just go on, a petrified me in the centre of pigeons in Trafalgar Square, a flashback of me hiding behind my younger sister as she held out a starfish. I was too scared of everything and anything.
This fear soon translated to a fear of socialising or being accepted. Social gatherings scared me, and I spent half the time wondering whether if everyone was just talking to me out of pity, and the other half trying to devise a plan to leave early. I’ve always been a thinker since I was young, and I spent too much time thinking about the pros and cons of doing things, that I never did anything beyond my comfort zone. If you just stay in your comfort zone, you don’t grow. And for years, I was stagnant in doing things I knew I could do and would be good at.
Fast forward a few years to 2015, I reached a point in my life when I decided I couldn’t let fear hold me back anymore. You know the saying, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone?” That’s when I started pushing myself to do something that scared me everyday (If that sounds familiar, it’s another quote by Eleanor Roosevelt.) It started from small things like signing up for a modelling show in Tembusu College, the residential college that I stay in, to more extreme things like embarking on my first solo-trip to Canada for WWOOFing.
The days that led up to these situations were filled with regret and internal arguments within myself as to why I even put myself in such a situation. But at the end of it, I never regretted challenging myself. I’m not sure if my friends even noticed that I was highly uncomfortable, but the more you do the things that scare you, the less scared you become. I’m quite a different person today than I was maybe 4 years ago. I’m more outgoing, I can hold conversations with new people from all over the world, and I can travel in a new country on my own without worry. I’m still learning and growing everyday, and that’s the best part! The learning never stops.
The new revamp of my website is more focused on empowering individuals in their quests to improve themselves, whether through a solo trip or just taking a break from the overly filtered world of social media. For me, I found that I grow the most through new experiences, especially when I was traveling. I hope to help you to challenge yourself to try something new, and to do what scares you. The two areas that have helped me to change are Travel and Community. Travel has exposed me to new cultures, and opened my eyes to different perspectives and ways of life. It has taught me not to judge, just because someone may be different from you. Traveling alone has also taught me to be independent, to plan ahead and to manage my finances better. Community has trained me to be more vocal about my opinions, and to be less harsh on myself. The different people I have met have given me great advice, and inspired me in so many ways.
Wait, what about the food?
Of course, my website will still have a foodie aspect. Food has always been a huge part of my life, and it still is. I’m very interested in Food Culture and Communal Dining. One thing about food is that it transcends cultural differences. Food brings people together. No matter where I am, I can always look forward to enjoying meaningful conversations over good food. In an age where social media distracts us from the moment, and we face our phones and computer screens more than the people around us… I hope to bring back this community culture and to encourage more friends and family to dine together without the distractions of technology and to just enjoy food slowly together, rather than rushing through every meal so you can go back to your online lives and stalking others. It sounds ambitious, but honestly, couldn’t you do that for your loved ones? After all, it’s just a matter of choosing to put your phone and other distractions away, and to actually focus on the people around you.
I continue to make a conscious effort to choose new experiences every day and to keep challenging the norm, not just my personal norm but also societal norms. I’ll share my experiences and tips here, and hopefully it’ll inspire you to get out there and live life to the fullest! I’m not perfect, but that’s the whole idea… to give you a real down-to-earth view of a girl just like you, trying to find her place in this world. (*cue taylor swift*)
Thanks to WWOOFing, I’m no longer scared of dogs!
So join me on this journey of self-discovery as I roam the world. Roaming the world doesn’t have to be limited to actual trips to another country, but it could be through cooking a new recipe from another country (stay tuned!) or just through meaningful conversations with someone new! You can explore the world of self-discovery without even having to leave your hometown, you just have to choose the right experiences.
“We can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea. Holding onto something that is good for you now, may be the very reason why you don’t have something better.”
― C. JoyBell C.
I don’t think that there are good or bad experiences. There are difficult experiences for sure, but to me, all experiences are good since there is always something you can learn from it. Choose for yourself, make your own memories, and tell your story. After all, life is as interesting as you make it 🙂