A little more about me and what led me here...
Although I had a pretty nomadic childhood, I am mostly from Ann Arbor, Michigan. After graduating from the University of Michigan, I spent a number of years working to pay off student loans, fund my travels & basically, tried to avoid becoming a grown up for as long as possible. Just as I thought I'd finally figured out what I wanted to be when I grew up and was about to go back to school, destiny had other plans...
I had come to visit Matera for the first time in 1989 and absolutely fell in love with the place and Italy in general. I then made frequent trips to Matera in the years following. I had even lived here briefly in 1995, when I came to teach English after doing a TEFL course in London. I had always thought I'd like to come back and live in Matera, if only I could find sustainable work. That opportunity presented itself just as I was at a major cross-roads...
In January of 2000, after some serious reflection and soul-searching, I made a big decision, took the plunge and I've been here ever since. Ironically, because my family moved around so much growing up, this is the longest I've ever lived continuously in one place... I figure, there must be a reason (or - several reasons)!
In addition to doing tours of Matera, I am a teacher/translator/writer/narrator and lover of music, nature and literature. Oh, and did I mention mom? Whew!.
As a tour guide, I have had the opportunity to show people around and narrate the unfathomably vast history of this magical place for over 20 years now. I have also had the good fortune of being listed in Lonely Planet for about that long as well, in addition to having been mentioned in National Geographic Traveller.
I love my job, as it allows me to meet people from all walks of life and from all over the world. I get to share my passion for the local history, culture, food and lifestyle, as well as learn from my clients through their observations, thoughtful questions and the exchange of ideas about everything from history and geology, to food, books, arts and entertainment.
I love how much I've also learned through the personal stories and experiences people share, which in the end, is what really connects us all as human beings. It's all about the stories we tell.
My perspective and experience of the town continues to evolve and my passion for it is renewed through these exchanges. I guess you could say that a large part, (the best part), of what I do is connecting & sharing with other people. This job continues to be a catalyst for both professional and personal growth and development. What an opportunity! It's a humbling and rewarding experience and I'm forever grateful for it.