Travel stories with Isabell Svensk – November 2015


”It’s one of the best feelings I know. I am addicted.”

// November 2015 //
What is your story? Why are you travelling?

To be honest, it took me 2-3 trips before I realized why I was actually ”travelling”. When I left Sweden on my own for the first time I was in a very bad place. I had recently broken up with my ex and as many know, a break up doesn’t have to mean the end of the “love story” and it was definitely not the end for us.

It was up and down for months and it was tearing me apart, I became someone I didn’t know, someone I didn’t want to be. During these months I waited for an opportunity to go to the States and work with horses. This had always been a dream for me, it just seemed so cool to be on the other side of the world working with my passion. But it never happened.

One day I was scrolling down my Facebook page and I saw an ad about work in a hunting yard in Ireland. It was absolutely not what I was expecting but I had come to a point where I could go anywhere and do anything as long as I wasn’t stuck in my messy life (and especially not my messy head). So I emailed them on a Wednesday – they got back to me the same day asking when I could come over! I booked my flight ticket for the Monday after. Arriving at Dublin airport I realized I had no clue of what I was actually doing or what I had got myself into. But all of this ended to be the best thing I’ve ever done. I became alive again.

So that’s why I first started travelling, it obviously was an escape from my miserable life in Sweden. But it wasn’t until I finally got back home from living in the States for three months working as a horse groom in North Carolina (the opportunity finally came along after my three months in Ireland) that I realised I wanted to travel. Even though Ireland is one of the best things I ever decided to do, and it gave me great lessons about myself and life. It’s not until everything is shit you start to actually know yourself and who you are. Because when you’re happy, why would you ever need to be strong or stand up for yourself? Or pick yourself up from falling and open your eyes even though its scary? That’s the thing with happiness, you don’t need to because you have everything.

In the States I worked for a man who was abusive in many ways, not only to me but also to others I worked with. He made us feel useless and harassed us. Three weeks into my three months in USA I realised that this was not going to be easy, but I refused to give up. No one at home knew how it was because I was supposed to be in the USA loving life right? This was something I had been waiting for so, so long. And now I’m here, and it’s absolutely shit? It makes me laugh. Now, not then, but now. I’m happy I did all of it, it taught me loads about so much, especially about myself. One of my best lessons in my life I would say, and I passed the test. I left USA feeling amazing and strong. And I discovered sides of myself that I never knew I had.

So the conclusion to, why am I travelling? Everyday is a lesson. I love it, I learn new things everyday. I challenge myself in unknown situations all the time and at the end of the day I know I made it. I fucking made it. It’s one of the best feelings I know. I am addicted.

Why are you where you are now? Why that place?

At the moment, I’m in Bundaberg, Australia and why is simply because this amazing girl I met in New Zealand told me to go here and do my farm work. I just left three of my friends because I am skint and need the money right now! All four of us are travelling the East Coast together but I needed a little stopover. So my mission here it’s just whatever my friend did – earning loads of money and having a good time! New experiences, new meetings, new lessons – new memories!

Give one good/ inspiring/ funny (high) story?

Before I left to go to New Zealand I was supposed to go with a few of my friends in Sweden and travel Asia, so I worked my ass off for eight months (had an amazing time!) and then when I had money enough, no one of my friends had the same. But I was so very done with my life at home! I looked into every different thing you could do around the world. Mostly different jobs as that’s what I’ve done before – going to another country to work wouldn’t be a problem for me. Even though it is a challenge you still have a bit already sorted for you … I wanted something new but I was scared. One day though I kind of just slapped my own face and decided to do something crazy! Without thinking I booked a return ticket to New Zealand. On my own. Was I mental?

I’m not sure if I had some kind of identity crisis or what was going through my head but I booked it and four weeks later my flight would take off! I was terrified and had the worst travelling fever I’ve ever had, it was horrible. I kept thinking I had made the wrong decision. Was I just a silly bitch trying to be funny or cool? I don’t know. I just didn’t know.

I left my family and friends, crying my eyes out, terrified of what the other side of the world would have in store for me. But as fast as I stepped into Auckland airport it was like everything just fell into place, and I had never felt more right. I wasn’t being a silly bitch, this is just what I want, just what I need. And it became one of my best years to date.

Give one bad/ sad/ tragic (low) story?

During my first months of travelling, I met a guy who instantly interested me. And who became my mission one night, just for fun. Nothing more really – but it turned out to be a lot more. After obviously accomplishing my mission (ha ha) we slowly started to get to know each other. We ended up spending five weeks sleeping in each other arms every night. We had an incredible time together on so many levels. Not just being lovers but actually learning from each other and having interesting conversation. It was all a bit mad – he was leaving the country and I was staying. There would be no happy ending and we both knew it. But we couldn’t keep our hands off each other anyway.

The day came when he had to leave me. And it was just a ordinary day, we had breakfast together, lunch and just messed about as normal. His bus turned up, he went to get his bags and I disappeared to the toilet, hiding myself and my tears. We both always said it was just a fling, nothing special. I believed that until I found myself in the toilet, a tiny bit heartbroken. After all, it was very special but meeting someone when you are travelling with different plans is not ideal. Both of us wiped my tears away as he eventually got on the bus. It’s just horrible seeing someone leaving, without having any clue of when you are going to see them next.

One of the downsides with travelling, you meet people, special people, and then they leave. Or you do. Even if I’m cold as ice (which I’m not really), although you kind of get used to goodbyes while travelling it never gets easier. I’m not just talking about this person here though, we had a romance which still means a lot to me but that’s it. Nothing more and I’m perfectly happy with that. It’s the saying goodbye when you don’t want to. Not ready for it. It’s a new kind of heartbroken feeling (instead of from a fuckboy who is just being a dick!;)

Where are you going next?

Whenever I’m ‘rich’ again I’m gonna meet my bitches for some celebrating across Christmas and New Year in Byron Bay. I have a few places to visit on the way but Byron and after New Year I’ll be back to New Zealand!

What motto do you live by?

“Don’t be trapped by dogma” = Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone elses life. Don’t be trapped by dogma which is living with the result of other peoples thinking. Don’t let the noise of others opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most importantly; have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become.

I even got this phrase tattooed on my arm! Hungover/still drunk from the night before me and my best mate went and got tattoos. I’m not sure if I knew what I was at that moment but I’ve never been so sure about this motto than any motto ever! It’s different, not many people recognise it, which makes me love it even more. Its meaning is the way I want to live my life. And the way I think everyone should live their life! I’m not there yet, but I’m working on it.

Share a secret about a place …

This one is so hard, so much I’ve seen I want everyone to experience! I defintely think everyone should go to Ireland, and plan a visit to the yard I lived and worked in. Flowerhill Equestrian centre – it doesn’t matter if you are a horse person or not. You will have the craic of your life!! And Queenstown, too good!!

Life lesson / tip you would give?

In life, things happen, bad, good, amazing, horrible, scary, lovely, and you meet people for better or worse. People or situations can bring the worst or the best out of you. Something I’ve learned and a life lesson that I always remind myself of is that in the end it’s only you. It is your decisions, its your way and your run. You are the only one who can decide how you see things, how you talk to people or how happy you will ever be.

It’s not about that you are alone in any kind of way, I have the best people anyone can wish for around me. But none of them are my head, or my thoughts. If they tell me I look sexy in something I feel disgusting in, that’s not correct then is it? Or if it would be the other way around? Everything we feel, if its good or bad, it’s only us feeling it. It’s only us being in control of how we should approach it. You’ll need support and you will get that but in the end. You are the one in control (something I think a lot of people, including myself forget often).

Instead of taking control is it easier to rely on other people to make you happy, better, prettier, or whatever you want to become? An American girl once told me when I was looking at myself in the mirror, not happy with myself. She said, “Pretty is just a feeling, you are just as pretty as you feel” and this is true. Not just about being pretty, about everything. Instead of her trying to convince me that I’m pretty, and good enough. She just told me how it actually is. Because it doesn’t matter how pretty I am, or how good enough I am or whatever. Its about how you feel – that is what is important.

Thanks from me. Maybe I need to change my attitude about loads of things, cause im just a silly bitch??! But this is my story, and my thoughts. Enjoy people.


Everyone has a story to share … Thanks Isabell for sharing your story 🙂

”The People Make The Place”


Please leave any feedback - I would love to hear from you!