New book features Nora Dunn, The Professional Hobo
A new book by Caryn G. FitzGerald profiles 30 people who are following their dreams, and one of them is travel blogger and writer Nora Dunn, The Professional Hobo. I have met Nora — we’re both from Toronto — and I can attest to her status as an inspiring person. Here’s a guest post from Caryn about her book Living the Life of My Dreams: Essays & Interviews with 30 Ordinary People Living EXTRAordinary Lives ~ Their Lessons Learned & How-to Secrets Revealed. Read on to find out how Nora inspired FitzGerald, and Nora’s thoughts about how to find support to live your dreams.
By Caryn G. FitzGerlad
I awake each morning to birds soaring past my bedroom window and the ripples on the water decorating the lake behind my dream home. This is quite a change from where I was just over a decade ago, in a dark, cramped musty apartment. I knew my dreams would come true if only I stayed faithful to my soul and the passionate desires raging inside of me. My journey took many twists and turns along the way, finally landing me in a place of peace and contentment.
There are days though when I’m driving along the highway and the desire to head towards the airport and jump on the next plane to an exotic location stirs deep within. The words from the famous song by The Clash “Should I stay or should I go?” rumble through my mind and for a moment in time I wonder what it would be like to travel the world without a permanent address.
This is when Nora Dunn comes to mind. Nora is known as The Professional Hobo. We met online and I must admit, upon first glance I thought she was kidding when she said she has traveled the world since 2007 without a fixed address. Once I moved past the initial shock, a wave of curiosity came over me. How does she get her mail? I wondered. Maybe she doesn’t. Wow! No mail. I love that idea! The more Nora and I interacted and the more I read about her travels, the more intrigued I became with the thought of leaving it all behind and traveling the world.
Then the “but” monster snuck into my dream world and shattered my fantasy with it’s devious claws:
- But you have a home.
- But you have a family
- But you have bills to pay, you must have a fixed address
- But you’ll miss your friends
- How will you survive in foreign countries?
- Where will you get money to pay the bills?
The “but” monster crept on and on until I finally decided traveling the world right now was not the best option for me. Instead, I decided to live vicariously through the experiences Nora shares on her blog.
Nora amazes me. She has explored 20 or more countries on five continents. Sometimes alone, sometimes with friends. I asked Nora what advice she had for those who are faced with the “but” monsters and “helpful” friends putting up roadblocks while aiming for their dreams.
Nora’s advice is priceless.
“Standing up as individuals in the face of what others think is a constant exercise in defining who we are and sticking by it. Although most of my family and friends have always supported my full-time travels, some people suggested that full-time travel is an act of withdrawal, and others haven’t known how to support me (and my career as a writer) while living abroad. When I lived in Australia for over a year, the biggest accusation I faced from others was that I was no longer a traveler – something that cut deep for me.
The biggest lesson I’ve learned from facing these opinions of others has been that we must define our lives – our dreams – for ourselves, regardless of the opinions of others. It is only once we shed our preoccupation with what people think that we can truly shine as individuals.”
I am grateful to have connected with Nora as she is a constant reminder that it is possible to bring to reality the life you see in your dreams.
Read more about Nora Dunn, the Professional Hobo and the adventure she calls life in the newly released ebook Living the Life of My Dreams: Essays & Interviews with 30 Ordinary People Living EXTRAordinary Lives ~ Their Lessons Learned & How-to Secrets Revealed available online at Living the Life of My Dreams.
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