When I was a child I entertained dreams of far away places. I would always tell people “I want to go to Australia and Africa”. At that time I had no idea of the diversity of those places. Nor did I know how or when I’d get there. I just knew I had a burning desire to go.
I also fantasized about being an actor and singer and that was the course of study I pursued at Howard University (#BISON)! My first opportunity to travel overseas presented itself during my sophomore year as a Musical Theatre major. I was selected to receive a scholarship for two months to London, England and then Ghana, West Africa. The experience changed my life tremendously. My eyes, my mind, my heart were all opened to the fact that the number of possibilities available to me were as numerous as drops of water in the sea. I felt no fear that I was in unfamiliar territory, only intrigue and a strong desire to see more. As a Black American, it’s rare to look into a crowd and see a sea of faces that look just like yours, your friends, your family. In Ghana I experienced that time and time again. It was truly one of the most profound experiences of my life and I remember it as if it were yesterday. The sites, the sounds, the smells, they were all familiar and walk with me to this day.
Once I graduated from Howard University I pursued a career as a professional singer/actor in DC and NY with dreams of performing on Broadway. My dreams of traveling and performing on a professional level began to mingle and I’ve had opportunities to do both; as a singer aboard Norwegian Cruise Lines in the Mediterranean, around the country in various regional theatrical productions, and as Sarabi (y’all know her! She’s the Queen, Simba’s mother, Mufasa’s baby-momma) in “The Lion King” on tour and on Broadway!
So…I have been tremendously blessed to see my dreams become my reality. I’ve spent much of my time searching for opportunities to perform AND explore the world and I’ve given my passport(s) quite a workout. My life has truly materialized from my dreams…and yours can too.
I share my travels because I love to share and talk about the beauty I’ve encountered all over the world. But also because I want you to see that your life can be an expression of your wildest dream. I want to confront the fear of venturing into the unknown. Whether it’s the other side of town or the other side of the planet, I want to encourage people to get up, get out and experience the world. It’s true, there’s a lot of negativity surrounding us. We are force-fed a constant diet of tragedy and sadness. But God gave us a beautiful gift and that gift inspires me. Truly, I’m in awe of our planet. I want you to experience it, not just through me and my pictures and stories, but for yourself.
For me it’s not about the things you must include in your carry-on or the top restaurants in a certain city or the best hotels and resorts. It’s about the stories, the experiences, the encounters that I’ve had that continue to shape me.
I hope you enjoy what I have to offer. And please, comment and message and talk to me! I love a good conversation!
Until then, remember to #livelovegodobe because #fearisstupid!!
Feature image by Raymond Baynard (IG: @raymondbaynard)
Styling by Mykal Laury (mykallaury.com/IG and Twitter: @iammykald)