Hi, I’m Mackenzie. My great passion is travel, adventure, photography – and then writing all about it. Join me as I share my adventures, helpful tips and wonderful stories from all over the world. Somewhere along the way, I hope something here will inspire you to put a little adventure into your life and soul.
Because I’m hungry. I mean, my brain is hungry, for new things, for old things, for places and stories I’ve never encountered before. For new flavours and different ideas, for alternative ways of looking at life and the world. My feet are hungry for hills not yet walked, for music not yet danced to, for paths as yet unencountered. My ears are hungry for voices and the songs they sing, the music of life and all that binds it together. I know this all sounds a bit stupid, but that’s exactly how I feel.
I love the whole experience of travel – the planning, research, booking stuff, realizing I’ve made a terrible error and re-booking it (okay, maybe I don’t love that bit so much), getting new equipment/gear, packing, re-packing, arranging airport trips, and that glorious, thrilling moment when I finally get off the plane in a new country. I have a grin from ear to ear, and no matter how terrified I am about what I’m about to do, nothing takes that nugget of excitement from my gut.
Something weird happens to me when I travel. The only way I can describe it is that it feels like all my nerve endings are switched to the “On” position. I morph into a super-absorbent sponge, soaking up information several orders of magnitude greater than I ever do at home. I’m hyper aware of sounds, smells, tiny details on things that would otherwise pass beneath my notice. Food, even the dodgy stuff, tastes different, interesting, and usually fantastic.
Travel breathes life into me. It breathes life into everyone. I hope I can help you be inspired to do the same.
I was born to travel. Almost literally. I was almost born on the road between my parents’ home and the hospital in Brisbane, Australia. With my father in the army, travelling was a way of life for us. For the first 16 years of my life, we moved house (and sometimes state and country) on average once every 9 months. Myself, my two brothers and my sister grew up resilient, open-minded and with an experience of different cultures that left a permanent mark on all of us.
The highlight of that time was living in Singapore and Malaysia for two years, two places I still love and visit when I can.
Growing up didn’t stop my travels however. I backpacked through Europe, the Middle East, the UK, Canada, USA, China and Southeast Asia and I keep going back for more. For many years – like almost everybody else – I would work and save for a few years before going off to see the world again, coming back broke ready to do the whole working and saving thing again.
But then came the worst year of my life.
I lost a beloved aunt and two weeks later my father fell critically ill. Two days after that my mother died. My father survived but was very sick for the next three months, and as his guardian, I watched a brilliant man slowly decline into dementia. He died suddenly, exactly 6 months after he’d gone into hospital. Three months later, my beloved dog, Sam died of old age.
The scars of that year are still fresh for me, and I suspect, will always be – but if it taught me anything at all, it was that life really is so very short, and if you have a dream, you have to pursue it while you can, before life closes in on you, or before health issues shuts the gate on your adventures.
Surviving that year spurred me to step outside my comfort zone and do what I’ve wanted to do my whole life: travel and write, write and travel. It’s not an easy life, but hey, easy is for dead people. I choose the difficult, the tough, the things that require effort. I choose the rewards. There is no destination – there is only the journey, and it’s the journey I love most. I hope you’re inspired to try your hand at your own adventures.
I know I am
The wanderer of all the ways
Of all the worlds
To whom the sunshine and the rain are one
And one to stay or hasten
Because he knows no ending of the way
No home, no goal
I Write Books?
Why yes, I do, thanks for asking. I have had published a five book fantasy series called the Books of Elita plus two children’s books all under the name of Kate Jacoby. You can learn more about my works of fiction by going here.
MY OTHER PASSIONS?
Okay, I have more than three, but be warned, the list is long: big mountains, fireworks in winter, Star Trek, books and bookshops, puppies and dogs, blue cheese, the sea, Chris Hemsworth, science fiction, libraries, Game of Thrones, science, Sherlock and Doctor Who. That’s just the top few, and in no particular order.
It all started when I was three.
That was the first time my Mum noticed I’d gone missing. In the first threads of morning light, she combed the house looking for me, but it wasn’t until she opened the front door that she found me. Standing on the footpath outside our house, barefoot, in my nightdress, little toes curled over the edge of a deep hole dug the previous day by road workers, now full of rain water.
Her heart stopped. Gently so as not to scare me, she coaxed me away from the water and back inside. That’s when she worked out how I’d got out in the first place. I had stood up in my cot, rocked it back and forth until it reached the door handle so that I could open it and climb out.
That was the first time. By the time I was six, I had a police record in three states. “She’s done it again,” my mother would call my Dad at work. “She’s gone wandering. The police are already out looking. I’ll call you in an hour if we haven’t found her.”
Over the years, our constantly-changing neighbors would tell each other that I was a run-away – but that wasn’t true. Although I was very young when I first started, I do remember quite clearly – I just wanted to see what was around this next corner. I wasn’t running away so much as simply exploring.
Over the years, I’ve grown taller, my brain has expanded with life experience, and I even have a few creases around my eyes to prove I’ve laughed a lot. But one thing hasn’t changed – I still love to go exploring.