Hi there! Thanks for stopping by. I’m so flattered that you want to get to know me better. 😉
I’m Viola, a girl who loves to travel, take photos, write, and basically obsess over creating content for this website that you are currently on.
If five years ago you told me that by my late 20s, I will be jobless and traveling the world, I would have looked at you like huh, what is this weirdo talking about? And yet, here we are. I am currently a full-time digital nomad, a lifestyle that the younger me did not even know existed. So how did I get here? Here is my story.
Let’s go way back….
Little me before I ever met a real elephant
I was originally born in China in a beautiful city called Chengdu. (If you’ve never been to Chengdu, you are missing out on adorable giant pandas and delicious spicy food. Just saying) At the age of 10, little me immigrated with my parents to Toronto, Canada, where I am currently based.
Growing up, I was a shy kid. Talking to people always made me a bit nervous. But inside of me, I secretly wished that I was brave and bold. Going back into my teenage diary, you can find many pages where angsty me talked about my goal of becoming more confident, lyrics I copied from Kelly Clarkson’s song “Breakaway”, and cliché quotes like “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
The turning point….
My very first big adventure happened during my third year of university when I decided to participate in a study exchange program in Australia. It was my first time going so far away alone and I was scared sh*tless. But I told myself that it was my chance to see the world and grow out of my shell. Little did I know that this trip would change the course of my life forever. During my time abroad, I did things that surprised myself and went way out of my comfort zone. I took surfing lessons even though I was afraid of the ocean, I camped in the Australian desert with a group of strangers, I tried sky diving and jumped out of a plane 15,000 feet in New Zealand! Six months later, I returned home with a newfound sense of empowerment and a craving to travel again.
But, I was still not brave enough. I ran right back on to the track of my old life in Canada, which entailed graduating from university and finding a corporate job in Toronto. After all, it was the path that my traditional Chinese parents and the education system ingrained in me: Study well and get that paycheque. So that’s what I did. Even though I knew I was not happy. I hated the morning commute everyday where people get pack onto the subway like sardines. I hated sitting in drab and sterile cubicles, I hated office politics, and I hated myself. What am I doing here? Why am I so stuck? I asked myself.
I wish I could tell you that I quit my job but the fact is I stayed. I stayed due to fear. I stayed due to cluelessness. I stayed until I was laid off. Yep. The company was downsizing and I shockingly lost the only thing I thought I had, security. But, instead of feeling sad, I actually felt relieved. I felt like my world opened up again with loads of possibilities. It was as if they set me free! This time, I told myself I will not get a job so quickly. I would take some time to travel using my savings, and figure out what truly makes me happy.
Where I am now….
Fast forward to today, I still haven’t stopped traveling. It turns out, traveling IS what makes me happy. There is nothing quite like the rush I get when I book a flight to a country I haven’t been to before. I love learning about different cultures, discovering local foods, and making new friends all over the world. In 2017, While I was working in Japan as an English teacher and wandering all over Asia during my spare time (Psst there are so many amazing cheap destinations in Asia!), I started my travel blog.
The name of the blog came to me while I was pondering what makes life wonderful? My answer was in two parts: A life is wonderful when you can appreciate all that you have been blessed with, and pursue fearlessly the things that you dream of (AKA the bucket list). Alas, “The Blessing Bucket” was born.
Now, even though my blog doesn’t make a lot of money yet (I work side hustles like teaching English online), I am happier than ever. Because I have found my mission, which is to help millennials like me live their best life through travel.
Whether you came to the blog looking for ways on how to travel more often, tips on travel hacking, or itinerary ideas for certain destinations, I gotchu. 😉 Never hesitate to email me at email@example.com if you don’t find what you are looking for, or you simply would like to chat. Let us explore this big beautiful world together!
5 Interesting things to know about Viola (me!)
- I consider myself to be an outgoing introvert. While I love meeting locals while I’m exploring the world, I also enjoy being a hermit at home. When I’m not traveling, you can find me in my room, reading a book or being on my computer all day long (not the healthiest thing, I know). Social life? Hmm never heard of what that is. 😛
- I love to dance. I have trained as a dancer since I was young. (Play some Beyonce and you’ll meet my alter ego 😉 ) My specialty dance style is called Waacking, an expressive dance traditionally done to disco music, with lots of intricate and powerful arm movements and sassy attitude. (My little brother describe it as the “swatting flies” dance) Here’s a video of me doing it.
- I can’t drive. This is quite embarrassing…Since I’ve gotten my driver’s licence at age 18, I have not practiced driving very much (A combination of traveling all the time + always living in a city with convenient transportation). Now, whenever I touch a steering wheel, I get sweaty palms from the nerves. Hopefully, by the next time I edit this bio, this will no longer be a crutch for me!
- I cannot stand cold weather despite having lived in Canada for years. I’m a summer girl at heart through and through.
- I love everything Disney. I have been to 3 Disneylands around the world. In Orlando Florida, Los Angeles California, and Tokyo Japan. Ok, I confess, I have actually been to Tokyo Disneyland more than once.
Now that you know so much about me, we are officially besties! Yay let’s make it social media official! 😀 Be my friend on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. Also, don’t forget to join my mailing list here. I publish a newsletter about once a month with juicy updates such as new travel resources I’ve discovered, current giveaways I’m running, etc. It’s very low commitment on your part and there is no spam ever! I promise.
Follow my journey on Youtube
Want to work with me?
If you would like to collaborate with The Blessing Bucket, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for my media kit. I look forward to chatting with you.
“Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you!” – Oscar Wilde