Hi, I’m Anna! I’m a twentysomething with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, a ton of art supplies and a travel addiction.
My Mum spent the ’70s and ’80s travelling the globe for her work at an NGO, and so I grew up in a house packed with souvenirs, photographs and fantastic stories. We travelled together when I was young, but as a teenager I developed fairly severe Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder which took over my life from 14-19. Whilst my peers were off on gap years, I was battling with my mental health and travel was the last thing on my mind. I took the odd holiday with a friend or parent every now and then, on well-trodden ground and very much within the mildest comfort zone I could find.
Whilst I still struggle with OCD (and it affects the way I travel), I’m much, much better now – I just come across as mild germaphobe with some quirks! In 2016, I began daydreaming about all the travels I never thought I’d be well enough to do, obsessing over my peers’ Instagram feeds and earnestly following all the travel blogs I could find. I finally worked up the courage to take the plunge, and booked a two-week trip to Sri Lanka.
The experience changed my life and re-oriented my ambitions, and within the next twelve months I’d visited another 7 countries (and Malaysian Borneo), four as a solo traveller. Travel has become a huge part of my goals for the future and my identity, and like so many other Millennials spend a good portion of my free time daydreaming about where I’m going to go next!
In my regular life, I’m a full-time strategist and a part-time artist. I paint my travels and (try to!) draw on the road, making films and taking photos. The colours and sights and sounds of a trip abroad have a huge impact on the work I make, and I hope to share that work with you here.
I love my full-time job; it’s incredibly rewarding and mentally stimulating, which is why I’m not a ‘pack it in and go travelling’ type of person. I want to find a way to see the world and achieve my career goals!
I break a lot of backpacking ‘rules’.
I don’t stay in hostels, I plan the *!%$ out of my trips, I check my bags, I love a guidebook and don’t really ‘go with the flow’. And all of that makes me happy!
My goal for this blog is to chart my travels as a “flash packer” with a mental health condition and full-time job, and the art I make along the way.
I love to read people’s stories – to get to know them as well as about the places they visit. There are a lot of travel blogs out there, but I personally am always on the look out for more, so I thought why not share my travels and art? Hopefully I can be of some inspiration in the way I travel – there are a lot of luxe travel blogs and a lot of budget ones, but not many in between. I spend my money on private hotel rooms with my own bathroom (because of my OCD), experiences, and sometimes private travel like taxis, as I travel on my own – but I save on food and transport where I can! I budget carefully for each trip to make sure it all works out, and will try to share my tips along the way.
I also upload videos to my YouTube channel – you can see my 12 months in travel below!