Christian A. Schaffer is a talented self-taught photographer and traveler currently based in Monterey Peninsula, California. “The open road is always calling, and where I feel most at home”, she says. Christian adds: “My passion is and always has been travel and the outdoors. The moment I was free of a corporate contract, I took stock of my savings and decided I would make it stretch. I shipped my few belongings to a storage unit, and traded my apartment in South Italy for a backpack and nowhere to call home.”

I’ve packed up my life and moved on 31 occasions, and changed my mailing address, officially, 32 times. No, I’m not a military brat. Just a restless transplant. I was born in Arkansas, grew up in Wisconsin, and then decided to leave the Midwest and everything I knew for Hawaii. I sold all but four boxes of my belongings and flew to Oahu alone, where I didn’t know anyone. It felt like home.

For 11 months, I traveled through 5 continents and 19 countries. I traveled alone, and met up with friends along the way, some old and some new. I went snowboarding in New Zealand, bungee jumping in Costa Rica, clubbing in Dubai, brunching in Bahrain, camping in Oman and sand surfing in Jordan. I nearly died of food poisoning in Thailand, got lost in Sri Lanka, misplaced my wallet in Australia and just barely escaped interrogation in Israel. I stayed in 21 hostels, 15 hotels, 14 homes, 2 tents, and 1 treehouse. It was 11 months of absolute freedom and reckless travel. And after that, I just couldn’t go back.

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