Nanda had been working in a Medical Conferences Organizer as a Project Manager for the last couple of years. Although this job provided her with a very good social status on one hand and a pretty good salary on the other, she needed to work like crazy every single day and felt it was a dead end.
“It was getting me very stressed and I couldn’t have enough time for myself or to feel alive. I felt that I wasn’t achieving the expectations I had idealized for me. I felt that there was a huge gap between the life I desired to live and the life that I was actually living.”
All this frustration turned into something bigger. She was soon fed up with all the hassle and pressure at her job and in her relationship, so in a moment of despair, she decided to change everything in her life. Quitting her job and breaking up with her boyfriend was only one part of her plan. The second part came as a response to the feeling of being trapped. She wanted to be happy, content and empowered again, but realized this could only be done if she took a step back from the world that she knew. Without much ado, she bought a ticket to travel Europe for 50 days, enough time to immerse her in every culture she will experience.
“I just woke up one day and I realized that I couldn’t do it anymore. One decision came after another and that is how I ended up backpacking in Europe in this summer.”
Extremely thrilled about the trip and pleasantly surprised about her spontaneity, she started looking into the itinerary. She had a rough idea about the cities she wanted to visit, but that didn’t matter that much. Europe is beautiful anyway, she thought. More important was the determination to open her heart and mind to other cultures and thus grow and change from inside out. With the ticket in hand, she realized that she is actually free to live her life, on her own terms, discovering it day by day, step by step. She boarded the plane in Porto Alegre on June 16th without looking back.
“My first city in Europe was Lisbon. When I got there, I walked up the hills of the old city neighborhood, where my hostel was located. I’ll never forget the feeling I had when I got up to the Santa Catarina point view. I could see a big part of the city and the river. The warm breeze was blowing my hair, the sun was warming up my body and the view was just amazing. I felt so free, so comfortable with myself, so happy. It was the first time in years that I have had that sensation: a simple happiness for the power to be able to decide whatever I want to do without taking anyone in consideration.”