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Purple Clover: Our Sabbatical Adventure

purple clover sabbatical aug 2013Thank you to Purple Clover for publishing my story about Our Sabbatical Adventure.

Five years ago, Apple’s App store opened, Kindle was brand-new, Skype was not yet a verb, and my then-boyfriend/now-husband George and I flew to Tahiti to start a one-year sabbatical adventure.

I chose to leap for love and was unsure how a year on the road would play out. George and I met online and had an instant connection, in no small part due to a mutual passion for exotic travel. George said very early on in an email exchange, “We will at least be friends,” knowing that he had found a kindred spirit of wanderlust.

After several months of dating, we traveled for three weeks to Fiji and Vanuatu during summer holidays. Visiting a local village on Espiritu Santo meant this Princess (yes, I worked for Princess Cruises) had her first bucket bath. I liked it so much, I told George, “I am going to buy a bucket for my shower in Los Angeles. All the soap came right out of my hair.” Later that week, the former Peace Corps worker asked me to join him on this dream to travel for a year in Asia. Thank goodness, I had really liked the bucket!

During the next school year, many of our friends continually asked us, “How can you leave for so long?” Others said, “Just go for the summer and come back to teach in the fall.” They couldn’t imagine being uprooted for a full year. But, I had to ask myself, “If George goes on this year-long adventure without me, how will I feel?” I knew the answer in my heart. I had to go with him.

Under the moonlight in Fiji, when I had first agreed to join George’s dream trip, we had been together for six months. My 40th birthday was fast approaching and I missed the time when I traveled full-time.

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About

Lisa Ellen Niver, MA is a teacher, traveler, author, speaker and social media ninja who has traveled to over 100 countries and six continents. She is a frequent author in the Huffington Post, USA Today, Wharton Business Magazine, National Geographic, The Jewish Journal among many other publications. She is the founder of We Said Go Travel, a global online community of over 1400 writers with articles from every continent. As a 2012 nominee for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching, she received commendations from US Senator Barbara Boxer as well as Fran Pavley, Holly Mitchell, Eric Garcetti from California State Senate, and Assembly, and the Los Angeles City Council. She founded in 2009 the Los Angeles Science Teachers Network with teachers participating from over 70 schools, runs the Science Isn't Scary website and operated the Simply Science camp. She was featured on KTLA National TV on the program Career Day, a show that shares great careers for teens and was invited to speak as an expert on three different radio programs about global citizens, international education and the PISA test. She holds MA. and M.Ed degrees in education and graduated Cum Laude from the University of Pennsylvania. She is certified in California single and multiple subjects. She is currently working on the new Nickelodeon television show, Bella and the Bulldogs.

Comments
One Response to “Purple Clover: Our Sabbatical Adventure”
  1. Ewelina says:

    I love your post about your sabbatical journey, its so inspiring! I had no idea u guys met online! such a romantic story. I read it to my mum who is pressuring me all the time to settle down, find a husband blabla, and all those things about traveling cheap are so true. Its super hard for me now to be back in Europe after one year living in Thailand and traveling and start living normal life but posts like this give me energy.

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