I first learned about Heidi Siefkas on www.mstravelingpants.travel and I loved her stories! Miss Millennia Magazine was getting ready for our 2nd travel edition and we scanned the web looking for women to feature. I looked forward to reading all about her new adventures and was impressed at how many places she’s actually been to! She’s traveled enough for at least two lifetimes and I am inspired to do even more traveling myself.
What inspired you to create your travel blog?
I created my travel blogwww.mstravelingpants.travel while I was working for a travel and technology company in 2008. The executive team asked me to start a blog network across various themes. Ms Traveling Pants was one of those blogs. What started out by accident turned from a weekly professional task to an enjoyable hobby and now into one of my true passions and creative outlets.
Most that succeed BIG have also failed BIG before. Don’t be afraid to fail.
What are you most proud of?
I’m most proud of my spirited tenacity. Whether it is pursuing a new adventure, accomplishing a physical feat like a marathon, going beyond fear and recovering from a severe accident three years ago, or other, I’m determined. Now keep in mind that this determination is not rigid; it has a lot of fun, creativity, and adaptability.
Who has impacted you most in your your traveling spirit and how?
You never can know it all and certainly not from one person. Regardless of how many times you visit a place, how many people you meet, or other, traveling will shock your socks off. It is the best education. No Ivy League or graduate study can do what world travels can do. In fact, I’m about to embark on a journey to ring in 2013. I don’t know what I will encounter. It’s a new place and culture with many hidden hurdles as well as pleasures. I’ll be writing about it on www.mstravelingpants.travel.
What is your personal mission statement?
I close most of my posts with, “Here’s to more good times and good stories.” It comes from my belief that every occasion in life can be categorized as either a good time or a good story. And, isn’t it so true? Some of the best stories that I write are about less than optimal situations, but they are great yarns and good for lots of laughs.
What would be your inspirational message to young women who are struggling to fulfill their dream?
Surround yourself with people who will help you become who you want to be. We all need a clan of supporters. And, if you don’t find those where you are today, throw off the bow lines and find them.
Also, regardless of your talents and the support of your clan, it is very important to know that it is OK to fail. Most that succeed BIG have also failed BIG before. Don’t be afraid to fail.
What advice would you give those who would love to travel but do not know where to start?
You start with something that interests you. Don’t go somewhere just because everyone does it. If you love wildlife and open spaces, Paris shouldn’t be your first stop. Likewise, if you’re a SCUBA fanatic, you won’t find your ideal starter trip in the desert. My first trip was to Mexico with my parents because my father was studying Spanish. It inspired me to learn Spanish as my second language. I’ve gone back various times, but Mexico only whets my travel palate.
Besides traveling, what do you like to do in your spare time?
While traveling or staying in my local area, I enjoy hiking, kayaking, biking, and being active. I couple this activity with a hungry appetite for great food and wine.
What do you love most about traveling?
Feeling like a kid again. Everything is new and exciting whether smells, sounds, rhythms, tastes, etc.
Where do you see yourself five years from now?
I will continue to freelance write from wherever I hang my hat. I bet I’ll have a pair of flip flops and hiking boots at my front door.
Anything else you’d like to add?
It is rather funny that my writing has turned from something that was very forced as a kid into now something that I do as a profession and with such ease. It is interesting as you never know which of your talents will become your moniker. Now, I’m known as the writer; however, as a child, I was the scientist, math geek, as well as the musical one.
Currently, Heidi hangs her hat in South Florida where she continues to freelance write featured articles and blog posts while preparing a memoir for publishing. You can learn more about Heidi and check out her travel stories and insights at @HeidiSiefkas and @MsTravelingPant.