I realised I was born to travel when I was in Spain the year Francisco Franco died and I witnessed firsthand the country evolve from a brutal, authoritarian, military dictatorship to a fledgling constitutional monarchy. Picket lines and street demonstrations became everyday occurrences and the world morphed into a fascinating classroom leading me to backpack to nine European countries and Morocco that year.
Without a doubt, it was that first trip to Africa that really transformed me into an adventure traveller. I immersed myself in Morocco’s eclectic weave of Arabic, Berber, French and Spanish culture, with its Moorish architectural wonders and ruins, as well as the incredibly warm hospitality of the locals. I was enchanted by the bustling labyrinthine medinas and souks – with their colourful chaos of pungent exotic spices and freshly dyed leather, handmade perfumes, ethnic jewellery, as well as food stalls and shopkeepers galore. And I found the carnival of snake charmers, cameleers, monkey wranglers, henna-tattoo artists, palm readers, wandering minstrels and magicians to be totally captivating.
I leveraged my love for globetrotting with a career in international sales, marketing and general management – focused mostly on Asia-Pacific, where I have lived since 1991. I discovered my entrepreneurial spirit and founded Asia-Pacific Connections in 1993, a boutique marketing-services agency, to assist technology companies with their regional branding, media relations and editorial needs. Over the years, I travelled extensively and, as of today, I have visited 50 countries and am now focusing on adventure travel writing and photography with my blog Cindy’s Travel Tales.