• Gina Greenlee, Author

Life on the Edge



When I tell people that I’ve traveled to Nepal, they ask me with a straight face if I climbed Mount Everest. And I think, You’ve got to be kidding.


I prefer adventures of a different kind.


When I resigned a corporate job to travel around the world, I used it as an opportunity to pursue another goal: to write full time. I had never wholly committed my energies to my lifelong dream of professional writing as I had my corporate career. I was overdue for giving it my best shot.

For three years, I scrambled to earn a living in ways I had never known before, even with part-time work to supplement my freelance income. The challenge of those years included massive personal downsizing, moving three times to trim housing expenses and often choosing between eating well and paying rent.


During this period, a close friend was divesting herself of portions of her estate for tax purposes. I was one of several recipients of a five-figure gift.





I used part of it to take a break from my starving artist existence and travel to Nepal for three weeks.




Nepal was in the midst of a Maoist guerilla uprising. Though many of my friends thought I should reconsider the trip, my existence at home felt so tenuous and unpredictable that political unrest in Asia barely registered.


In the end, three weeks of hiking in the foothills of the Nepalese Himalayas was child’s play compared to my life back home.


I trekked through friendly villages on trails that overlooked luminously green rice terraces, sipped Sherpa tea, sat around a campfire and watched a local shaman infuse a villager with spiritual medicine for his aching shoulder, and tested my cardiovascular system at an elevation of 6,500 feet.


When I returned home I was ready, once again, to face life on the edge.

◊ ◊ ◊


Gina’s Nepal Adventure, December 2001

Each of us has our definition of adventure: ending an unsatisfying relationship,

returning to school, parachute jumping or

training for a marathon.

Go ahead.

Get your thrill on.

◊ ◊ ◊


Postcards and Pearls

Life Lessons from Solo Moments on the Road

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