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Audrey Bergner has been an addict for so long, she’s actually proud of it. Learn how she pays for her cravings and rarely takes a shower.
Currently chasing dragons around Southeast Asia, Audrey is a textbook junkie. You can read snippets about her irrational and delinquent lifestyle on her blog That Backpacker.
But what’s even more appalling is that South Koreans actually hired her to instruct their children! Obviously they must be pretty desperate for English teachers if they’re willing to support her loathsome addiction in this way. Not to mention trusting a junkie to take care of kids. Rumor has it they paid her millions
of won to do it too.
Now Audrey, I know this subject may be difficult to talk about. But you’re amongst friends here. Nothing that you say today will ever leave this room.
Share your darkest secrets with us, and let the healing begin…
When did you shoot-up with your first dose of wanderlust?
“Oh ho ho, I got started early. I’d like to point the finger at my parents who had me on a plane when I was only 6 months old. Sprinkle in some National Geographic magazines and documentaries from faraway lands during my formative years, and it all went downhill from there…”
What made you run away from home?
“I was craving a foreign experience! I wanted a language I couldn’t understand, an alphabet I couldn’t read, streets that would be difficult to navigate, and new foods that would make me tear up with their spice.”
How did your family & friends respond to your unconventional lifestyle?
“Surprisingly well! Though I’m sure my family would love to have me a bit closer to home, they weren’t too surprised when I announced I’d be heading off to do some ‘exploring’.”
Has your travel addiction changed you?
“It has taught me to sleep on airport floors, eat that questionable street meat, and deal with not getting a hot shower every morning. That’s going to look good on a resume one day.”
What’s your seediest travel vice?
“After a few years of roughing it staying in dorm rooms with snorers and cold showers, I have to have admit, I do on occasion like to live it up in fancy hotel with a nice swimming pool. *Gasp!* Did that just come out of the mouth of a self-proclaimed ‘backpacker’?!”
Can you tell me about your biggest travel regret?
“Only one: being so far away from my family. Some days I just feel like watching some TV in my parents’ living room, or having late night chats with my two sisters. Skype helps, but it’s not the same.”
How do you fund your addiction? Armed robberies? Prostitution? Stealing copper wire?
“There have been different jobs for different stages. When I was in university I worked at a cafe and that helped fund my summer jaunts around Europe and South America. (It wasn’t a lot of money, but that goes to show how far some serious determination and penny-pinching can get you!) I later took a job as an English teacher in Korea, which was quite lucrative. And I am now working as a blogger and freelance travel writer while exploring South East Asia.”
Have you ever overdosed?
“The more I do it, the more I crave it! When I was travelling in the past, even a month was never enough. I would start to feel sad once my time abroad began to wind down, but now that I’m on a very extended journey, Imma feelin’ fine braw!”
Do you find it hard relating to normal people who are clean & sober?
“Because travel is such a big part of my life (and has been for so many years), it’s always the first topic I jump to when I meet new people. Tell about the places you’ve been, what you have seen, where you want to go, let’s swap stories! Sure, I can talk music, fashion, and current events… but the conversation might be dotted with statements like ‘this one time in Bolivia…'”
Has your addiction got you into any trouble?
“There have been a few mishaps along the way. The one that most vividly stands out in my mind is the night India was out to get me. Picture a rickshaw with failing brakes, deep potholes, wheels flying off said rickshaw, and getting caught in a bus’ blind spot… all in the span of half an hour!”
If someone wanted to get a little taste of your addiction, which of your blog posts do you recommend they check out?
“There’s the one where I watched the sunrise over Angkor Wat, or the one where I thought I might not enjoy travel anymore (crazy talk! I just needed a bed), or the rickshaw adventure in India, and if that’s not enough, here are some funny lessons I’ve learned while backpacking South East Asia.”
Do you ever think you’ll be able to kick the habit?
“My travels may not always look the same way they do now (swapping cities every week for months on end would eventually becoming exhausting), but even if I eventually slow down the pace, I still see myself living abroad – perhaps a nice little apartment in Buenos Aires for a few months at a time…”
How do we find you to stage an intervention?
Thanks for sharing your experiences with us Audrey. I sincerely hope your powerful story can help others