In 2005, I attended the Book Passage Travel Writers Conference in San Francisco. It was an interesting time for me to say the least. I had just started an awesome job traveling for a Fortune 100 company but at the same time, my dear, beloved mother - had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. On top of that I had this dream to be a travel writer. With a Journalism degree and an MBA the travel writing life sounded like the perfect fit.
The intensity of life's all too brief moments was overwhelming though. We lost my mother in September 2005, and I found myself thrust into a season where I had to decide what I really wanted out of this life. What would I do with my remaining moments? In the midst of a tragedy, I wanted to add something beautiful to the world. I was prepared well - thanks to wonderful parents.
And it was the culmination of this sad season of my life and a desire to do something that I was passionate about that I started Zaji Magazine as a fun project. Zaji means "adventure" and, it's also the name of a village in the Congo. I think this little village has about 800 people. So somewhere in the middle of nowhere - there's an adventure waiting to be experienced.
The Book Passage Travel Writers Conference awakened my sense to the possibilities. I had this dream that I'd be a writer for the New York Times, write a guide book or two for Frommers and embark on this idyllic life.
I went to the conference expecting to meet people from all walks of life and different cultures. But that wasn't really the case. When I examined the world of travel writing with its glamorous pics and life changing experiences - I realized from the travel writing community itself wasn't a global village at all. It didn't really feed my soul - perpetuating stereotypes, living in the confines of a materialistic world that decided your self-worth based on how much stuff you had...
I needed to feed my soul. So Zaji's story begins with a simple question - what does it mean to be a woman living in a global village with a love and a passion for adventure?
The answer is a simple statement, it's just being a woman, being a human being and discovering your soul. Nothing is black or white. There are lots of myriad shades of grey. Life has it’s awful and terrifying moments…its joyful and beautiful ones.
Here at Zaji, I've managed to pull together a bunch of “world traveler girls” who’ve been molded, bashed and refined by our multi-cultures and global travel experiences.
Our goal is to get you to relax, connect, escape and make each moment count. We’ll take you on an adventure where YOU take center stage and discover what you’re living for.
Check out the blogs!
Jet Setter: A Sweet Escape for the Global Girl On-the- Go. We explore our hometown of Dallas - cool places to eat, fashion and more.
Adventures of A Chocolate Chick: Join me on an adventure where I discover my African soul - through music, books, spiritual inspiration and the beautiful travel destinations of Africa and the Middle East.
Travel Editor, Zaji Magazine