This Trip Leader Spotlight series is our opportunity to catch up with some of our favorite humans and hear about the lives they lead outside of Bold Earth.
I chatted with trip leader Lucy B. to find out what she’s been up since leading the Ecuador Galapagos adventure with co-leader Nick. She spoke with me from her family home in Massachusetts where she was visiting for the weekend.
As an avid traveler, Lucy tells me she typically spends the off season in many different places. She often travels to the UK and France to visit family and spends the rest of her free time scattered around the States or throughout other parts of Europe.
I ask Lucy next about what brings her joy while away from Bold Earth.
“Driving to get lost and to find some place new. I love farms and stumbling upon them. Having deep conversations with friends and people I bump into and can get to know, even if they’re a very random person. Little things like watching the sunrise, a cup of tea, picnics, relaxing by a fire with a book–gold star if it’s drizzling outside and you can smell the rain,” she says with a laugh. “Those are my simple pleasures.”
I ask Lucy about the most rad adventure she’s had this year, outside of her work with students. She says she’s done the least traveling this year than any year of her life, which for her has been a real challenge. Being a passionate wanderer, not to mention professional guide, staying in one place is not Lucy’s norm.
“This year it’s been about the little things. I loved going on a camping trip with friends in Upstate New York. It was very simple and lovely.”
Lucy still chases adventure, even when exploring close to home.
“My friend who was running the trip was like, ‘let’s go tubing down this river.’ This river was intense. We had little baby donut tubes, which were totally going to pop and not sustain us. Three people dropped out because they were nervous.”
Not one to back down from a challenge, Lucy dove in.
“I live for the thrill. I was just in a swimsuit and the water was frigid. I hadn’t done something like that for so long. It was so, so much fun. I laughed so hard I thought I was going to throw up. It’s fun to me to be on the edge like that, on the unknown, but having friends to do it with.”
Lucy’s energy and sparkle shine through, even on the phone. I ask her next about her thoughts on past students. If she could tell her students one thing about her life outside of Bold Earth, what would it be? She’s quiet for a moment, thinking through her response.
“I always want to tell students this, but I don’t because the trips aren’t about me,” she says. “I’ve really struggled with being scared of feeling like I don’t have one passion to follow and having so many things that I want to do in life and feeling really alone in that process.”
She goes on to explain that trying to navigate life wanting to do so many things has been a stressful and anxious process. It would’ve helped her greatly to speak to someone about those feelings at a young age. When she shared those feelings as a teenager, adults told her she shouldn’t worry so much because she had so much time.
“That really wasn’t helpful,” she says.
She turns back to the subject of her past students.
“I would share with them that they are not alone. There are many ways to navigate a life with many passions.”
Lucy herself is the living proof of this. She’s now working at a Vermont based wilderness therapy program where she helps mentor and empower at-risk youth. She doesn’t plan on giving up her adventurous lifestyle anytime soon.
“You never have to settle for being the type of person that you don’t want to be. There’s always space for you on this planet. You don’t have to change.”
Lucy’s Shout Out
During her time living in New York City, Lucy volunteered with an organization called Knock Knock Give A Sock. Their mission is to minimize the divide between the homeless community and the average population by converting transactions of sock donations into meaningful interactions. They also host “Meet Your Neighbor” dinners, bringing the homeless community together to break down stigmas between socioeconomic divides. To learn more about Knock Knock Give a Sock, visit their Instagram page or website.