Allie: How did you wind up living in DC?
Amanda: I ended up back here to live near family as I’m originally from the area. I went away for college in Ohio and after graduating, backpacked in South America. Once I had been bitten by the travel bug, I decided to live in South Korea for a year. Eventually, it was time to come home.
Allie: What led you to live in South Korea for a year?
Amanda: In high school I was very interested in anime, which was a gateway for me into Korean dramas and music. After college, I was interested in moving abroad to teach. South Korea stood out to me because of my interest in Korean culture and language. After living in South Korea, I continued traveling and went backpacking throughout Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, and Myanmar. I’m very lucky that I was able to do this. I really miss traveling.
Allie: What are some of your favorite memories from traveling and living abroad?
Amanda: In South America, the salt flats in Bolivia (Salar de Uyuni) were so breathtakingly beautiful. In South Korea, teaching every day was so much fun. I taught English to children through a program with the Korean government called EPIK.
Allie: Is there anything left on your travel bucket list?
Amanda: I haven’t been able to explore the African continent, and would love to go pretty much anywhere there. I’d also like to go to Russia and Germany. I made friends from both countries while I was abroad and would love to visit them.
Allie: What life lessons have you learned from all of your traveling?
Amanda: Always keep an open mind, whether that is in response to food, cultural norms, the language, exploring a new city, or meeting people with different opinions.
Allie: What do you do to relax at the end of a long work week?
Amanda: I love playing with my guinea pigs (named Chips and Salsa), watching TV with my roommates, or grabbing a drink with friends. I try to fill up my weekend with as many friend playdates as possible.
Allie: If you could be famous for anything, what would you want to be famous for?
Amanda: I’d like to be famous for being a philanthropist. I’d love to be a crazy rich person who gives tons of money to struggling causes.
Allie: What is your favorite Jewish holiday and how do you like to celebrate?
Amanda: I guess Hanukkah! I usually have parties for both sides of my family, and we all dress in Hanukkah sweaters and eat lots of latkes and light candles. I’m lucky I have a lot of family in the area and everyone stays really connected.
Allie: When Jews of DC Gather…
Amanda: They play a very easy game of Jew-ography. Everyone knows each other here.
The views and opinions expressed in this blog and on this website are solely those of the original authors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the organization GatherDC, the GatherDC staff, the GatherDC board, and/or any/all contributors to this site.