The Drunken Sailor World Tour

I love traveling. Always have. The notion that you can step on a plane and in a matter of hours be transported to a world completely different than your own? Amazing.

I travelled internationally a fair bit in my twenties – sometimes with friends, sometimes solo. My longest trip was about 4 months to Australia. This was back in the day of no email, no text messaging, no Skype, no Facetime, no Facebook, no Twitter. You get the idea…

My Dad (also known as The Serge and then later Grandpa Serge) struggled a bit with my adventurous spirit (and the lack of contact with his baby girl). He was a traditional Italian papa after all, with somewhat antiquated views of women and their role in the world. Why the hell wasn’t I settling down and having kids? To which I felt compelled to answer that I probably would never get married and never have kids – ever. Sharp intake of breath here. (Of course, he must have had a good chuckle when I ended up getting married and having 3 kids, all in the span of 6 years.)

But back to my 20s… In those days, he often said (to anyone who would listen), “You know my daughter, she likes to travel around the world like a drunken sailor.” (The irony that I rarely drank as much as half a glass of wine back then did not dissuade him from using this phrase ad nauseum. Or maybe he was going for irony – he liked to play people, after all.)

Regardless of his motivation, it irritated me back then, when I was so much more serious and intense about everything. I didn’t see that beyond the surface criticism, there was also pride that his daughter had a sense of adventure (after all, he was an immigrant who left his family, his friends and his culture to travel to a new country without a job, money or a home … now that’s adventuresome!)

On the cusp of our big adventure, my mind often turns to my dad, and I tell the kids, “You know this would not have been possible if it wasn’t for Grandpa Serge.” It also wouldn’t have been possible without our “austerity” budget: we’ve scrimped and saved; we haven’t taken vacation time in over two years. But his handprint is on this journey for sure.

And I can’t help but imagine him saying, “You know my daughter, she likes to travel around the world like a drunken sailor,” with a wink in his eye, trying to raise my ire.

Categories: Pre-trip | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “The Drunken Sailor World Tour

  1. Angela K.


  2. Sarah B

    Thank you for sharing this lovely story 🙂 My family is really looking forward to following your journey

  3. jeannette

    What a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing that with all of us. Can’t wait to hear more stories about your 8 month adventure. Even though we will miss all of you.

  4. Dawn L

    Wishing your family a most awesome journey traveling the world! Thank you in advance for sharing your adventures along the way. It is so wonderful that you are living your lives to the fullest. May God bless you and keep you each step of the way. Dawn (Donovan’s Grandma)

  5. Stephanie

    ahhhh, that’s such a lovely story, Gloria. I’m super excited for the 5 of you. Safe, fun travels. Stephanie

  6. Patty Maynard

    So happy that all the details have worked out to bring you to the beginning of the great adventure. I will pray for God’s blessing, good health, and safe travels. Look forward to hearing about your amazing journey. Patty, “Mrs. M”

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