• Sonia Ghiggioli

To Travel is to LIVE...

I have been inspired by travel for all my life it seems. Although I cannot remember the early days in my crib perched precariously on the back seat of our 1969 cortina, my earliest and fondest memories have been when I have been exploring this great world. I don't have to travel long distances to gain the benefit of exploring, as many places closer to home still provide the awe of the unfamiliar.

March has been a month to commit to writing my novel, now over 43,000 words which is a little over half way, and the 20 km swim challenge I pledged to raise awareness and funds for youth suicide prevention but I also visited some amazing places and met people I would never have dreamed of meeting. That is the inspiring thing about pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, you bump into people you would never get to meet in your usual pattern of your day.

"To travel is to live..."

Fiji - 2017

It is not only the people you meet, but you are almost always guaranteed some unanticipated challenges when you travel. You may forget an item you once thought you would never live without, try foods you once thought would be unbearable, or experience temperature, aroma or noise extremes that can be both terrifying and exhilarating at the same time. There have been times when I have travelled that I have felt completely free and other times unsafe. No day to day activities can prepare you for some of the things you will be exposed to when travelling, and that is what is so exciting about it.

Beach House Weekends

I have the good fortune of spending time in a beautiful beach house in a quaint seaside village called Cooee Bay, in Central Queensland. It is on the Southern End of the Great Barrier Reef and the islands in Keppel Bay can be clearly seen from here. There is numerous headlands to sit and watch the waves, or the sun or moon rise over the water. They say there are crocodiles in the water, but I am yet to stumble across one and we often go for moonlit walks along the beach! I find this beach house superb to write at. All I need is my portable office, some soft music and the lounge on this deck. I have written much of my novel in the Yeppoon region, usually after salty beach mornings and seafood lunches. The freeness of mind that I gain from experiencing this coastline is a true gift. It enables me to write openly and in generous amounts, the words flow from my fingertips.


I've taken my children on planes, trains, buses and automobiles and encouraged them to actively meet people and listen to stories that others tell. They have eaten in fine dining restaurants and been part of exquisite degustations, grew up in a winery and spent a lot of time in vineyards. They have stayed at resorts, been glamping but also free camping in tents with no facilities whatsoever. They are exposed to foods, farms and lifestyles many of us only dream of. The most important lessons they have learned in life are not any I have tried to teach them, but what they have experienced themselves. Give them the opportunity to learn, and learn is what they will do. Travel is our friend, and helps us to grow and mature.

This is the gift of life I have given to my children, as my parents gave to me....

Sonia Ghiggioli

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