Mina Son had worked as a star announcer of Korean Broadcasting System , and declared to be a freelancer in 2007. Traveling is ‘healing’ for her as she lives a second life as a writer by publishing <Spain, You’re Free> and <Who Drew Mimosa>. She can discover a different side of her, recharge, and have the motive to realize her dreams.
Traveling is breaking down our prejudice that we had while we thought only one way.For a travel writer like Mina Son, traveling, the mobile life on the road, is like studying.
“Travelling is like a school on the road. I think travelling is an exciting journey in which you endlessly obtain and learn from the world and people that you meet, instead of from a textbook. Unlike the school that enriches the brain, we need to travel to enrich the heart and soul.”
Mina Son, who had wanted to become a doctor, got the job of an announcer because of her experiences on the road. At a hospital in the US where she went to volunteer when she was in high school, she met a doctor with a benevolent spirit and contemplated whether she could be like that. She ended up deciding that she was more realistic, and went on to major in Spanish Language and Literature in college. Later, she left to study in Australia for change, as she still felt smothered by the university education of teaching by rote.
“I really developed mentally a lot when I stayed in Australia for a year. I decided to stay another year, so I applied for a leave of absence and went to Spain. That’s where I found the new me. I realized that I react to difficulties in a certain way, and that I’m this kind of person.”
She looked into herself as if looking into a mirror. She identified the being of ‘Mina Son’ like a black dot on a white space. Also she discovered her potential abilities hidden inside institutions. That was why she chose to become an announcer, as she can show creativity and boldness. Thanks to ‘a different Mina Son' she discovered on the roads of Spain, she enjoyed her ten years as a KBS 24th open recruitment announcer.
Those were the days she was busy as an announcer, so busy that she did not know what was being festered. Healing came out of the blue, and she obediently accepted. Like déjà vu, she thought of Spain; and she took a leave of absence from work and prepared to go to Spain to study. She was afraid, of course. A precarious year for someone who worked well in the spotlight… But she needed to refresh her life.
“I only studied and took a rest. Then I regained confidence. It was a great encouragement for me that I finished my studies in my thirties, with those who are ten years younger than me.”
It gave her strength to think she was still doing well. Obtaining ‘positivity to accept sadness and frustration’ was a plus, making her desperate for ‘the free dynamic moment for herself instead of the life locked up in others’ acknowledgement’. In the same context, she published <Spain, You’re Free> and decided to quit her job in 2007. Such change was possible because she did not forget ‘awakening’ and ‘healing’, which were gifts from the people she met on the roads, and she brought them to reality. Later, she fully experienced Spain, Argentina and Paris, and turned into a writer.
“Since last year, I’ve been thinking that there is nothing more healing than travel. You can see the problems of reality differently only when you take a step away from your daily life. That’s the meaning of departure. ’Refreshing’ in Spanish is ‘Cambio de aires (Change of Air). You can rest if you change air, and the same time seems to become a different time.”
For her, the most important factor that makes travel healing is people. The black gentleman from Senegal who made her realize what it is to help others, the horseman in Chile who transformed his mind to bring happiness… People she met on the roads comforted her and led her to a life of more freedom.
<Mina Son’s Travel Dictionary>, the pod cast she does these days, is an expanded version of travel in that context.
“I started it because I’d like to relieve my thirst for traveling as I can’t travel all the time, and also to tell the listeners what I know. If you don’t have a space to take a breath, how about traveling around the world with me? Throw away your fears and come to <Mina Son’s Travel Dictionary> where there are real stories.”
You should figure out what book is needed in this era, what people desire, and what is empty; then, you write your own story according to the trend.
It was possible because it was a challenge for my dream. I could constantly strive thanks to my dream of becoming a shed of light for other people’s lives, not just for self-centered and egocentric desire.
Prepare a lot. They say that you see what you know. Knowing something and not knowing something are completely different when you travel. The more you’re afraid, the more you should study. If you’re prepared, you’re not afraid.
Many people compare their lives to 'travelling'. We hope the interview with travel writer Mina Son can play as a small compass to your lives. :)
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