I’m thrilled you’ve stopped by. I’m Tricia, an explorer, travel writer, andconsultant who is passionate about the power of citizen diplomacy – the idea that everyday citizens can represent their home country and promote positive intercultural exchanges. I’ve lived abroad for 15 years and am fortunate to have visited more than 60 countries. Currently, I’m based on the enchanting Mediterranean island of Malta.
About The Blog
Travels with Tricia was born in 2011. On this eponymous blog, I share tales about the people and places that have left a stamp not only in my passport, but also upon my heart. Slow travel, wine & food (some gluten free), art & culture, and social good are common themes.
Citizen Diplomacy & People:People are what make a place special. Here, I share tales of the inspiring people that we meet along the way.
Food & Wine:Cooking classes and wine-tastings in Italy, Greece, and Thailand, and more informal moments with locals eager to share their secret formulas for homemade Bulgarian yogurt and wine-aged-under-the-sea.
Art & Culture: Features on topics such as the crafting of traditional Croatian silver filigree jewelry and the celebration of the Tet New Year with a Vietnamese family.
Collages: From the world’s varied windows, to coiffed German horse tails and delectable Spanish appetizers, my collage series combines nine elements of a place to create one defining image.
Photos du Jour:A place is defined in one image, in a Photo of the Day series.
Social Good:Posts to highlight causes that make a difference in the world.
Equal parts nomadic and nesting in nature, I’ve divided my life chapters between the Midwestern United States and Europe. After several years of semi-nomadic adventures that whisked us from Albania to Vietnam, my husband, Shawn, and I have temporarily settled in Malta. Before setting off on our travels, I also called scenic Heidelberg, Germany home.
Nesting among Heidelberg’s terracotta rooftops and cobbled lanes, I nurtured the interests I hold dear today: writing, photography, tickling the ivories of a piano, hiking, yoga, foreign languages, history, and travel. I also delight in hand-written letters, dark chocolate and most things vintage.
Brushing shoulders with people in more than 60 countries has shaped the way I view the world and its citizens. Standing in the shadows of the Taj Mahal, Petra’s Treasury, and Angkor Wat was magical, yet it was the people in those countries who extended me heartwarming hospitality – often strangers – that left the most lasting impressions. I wonder how the world would be if all individuals were such exemplary citizen diplomats.
Shawn, and I co-foundedChessboard Communications, a digital marketing agency focused on the travel & tourism industry. After an online introduction, we eventually married in the Heidelberg Castle on a snowy winter’s evening. Even today life still feels a bit like a fairy tale. In late 2011, we left our picturesque surroundings in Germany (and my job as an education program director/training specialist) to embark on an extended sabbatical. We have been fortunate to have visited many far-flung parts of the world.
I was raised and educated in the Midwestern United States, living in Illinois until my college years. Though I’m an only child, I experienced the joys – and rivalry – of sibling relationships via the four French, German and Hungarian foreign exchange students that my family hosted.
My professional passions focus upon writing, international affairs and development, education, citizen diplomacy and teaching. I have an MA in International Relations, and also hold a BA in Elementary Education.