Stephanie Huston, Communication graduate of ’08, knows her way around an airport. “Travel has been a priority in my life ever since I caught the travel bug back when I first studied abroad at Messiah,” Huston said. That first May Term trip to Spain in 2005 inspired both her lifestyle of travel and a passport filled with stamps from 30 countries on all seven continents.
“Life is full of ups and downs,” Huston said, “so I’ve stopped trying to achieve balance and have just been going with the flow of things, and focusing on what’s most important to me personally.” Huston continuously finds new corners and cultures of the world to further inspire her in everyday life. “I’ve seen a lot of incredible sights that I dreamed about growing up, and they never cease to impress me!”
Sometimes, the push to book a flight comes from a flight sale, like her trip to Iceland, or a continent goal, like her excursions to Australia and New Zealand. Sometimes, as with her trip to Cairo, Egypt, the long-expected fulfillment of a childhood dream inspires her to pack her bags. However, a new purpose for travel recently surfaced. Huston said, “Now that I’ve hit seven continents, I’d like to start making my way to every country in the world—the more places I travel, the more amazing places I hear about to go to, and I want to soak it all in!”
Huston’s most recent trip checked off the isolated continent, Antarctica. “Living in NYC, I sometimes dream of pure quiet serenity, and Antarctica was everything I dreamed it could be and more.” Not only did the trip complete her seventh continent goal, but it also gave her the opportunity to experience the frigid continent in a unique way. Traveling with Basecamp Activity Cruise, Huston found that the trip included exciting activities like snowshoeing, mountaineering, kayaking and camping.
Every time Huston breaths in unfamiliar air and experiences something new, she deepens her understanding of life. To anyone who’s never left the country, Huston says, “Go! Just go! Make it work—you’ll never regret it.”
Huston plans out her vacation days a year in advance, saying that “planning and anticipation is half the fun.” The importance of travel, however, doesn’t lie in only accomplishing incredible feats or traveling to the most obscure places. “Start small,” Huston said. “It doesn’t have to be an insane trip like Antarctica, but you have to learn how to travel just like anything else. Visit a new city in the USA, fly to Puerto Rico, plan a trip to Ireland or England where it’s easier to start traveling in an English speaking country. It will be more rewarding than you could ever dream.”
By Miriam Thurber ’19