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Before They Were Famous: Trish Friesen

Trish Freisen, editor-in-chief of the travel blog, chose an unlikely profession, given her fear of flying and propensity toward car, air, boat, train and chairlift sickness.  But thanks to Dramamine, Sea-Bands and cruise ship stabilizers she’s now a twice-a-month globetrotter who doesn’t miss her days sorting through spreadsheets in a cubicle.  See how this Canadian-born travel blogger turned her dream into a profession in this week’s Before They Were Famous interview.

Name: Trish Friesen

Website/Blog: |

Twitter: @tripstyler 

Facebook: tripstyler 



My earliest memory of being intrigued by travel was grade four. My family flew to Disneyland.  I listened to Whitney Houston’s “I wanna dance with somebody” using a giant set of headphones with a two-pronged plug-in. I still remember my meal on the plane; veal with veggies, and my outfit; a black and white knit jumpsuit with stripes and neon.

The weirdest thing I ever did to pay the bills…
My friend told me I could work on a cruise ship, so I applied, got accepted, and flew to Miami to take on the high seas as a Celerity Cruise Lines kids counsellor. I mean, days off lounging on the beach in St. Martin… In fact, why am I not still working for Celebrity?

Did you ever work in an office or a cubicle? 
Oh yes, I set up shop in many-a-cubicle in my day. All of them were uninspiring. Pinned-up spreadsheets replaced decor and I kept a jar of peanut butter in my desk in case I got hungry working late. I would try to spruce my ‘cube’ with a plant or two, but I never wanted to get comfortable, because I always had my eye on an office. Within a year (yay!) I got one, and my floor-to-ceiling glass windows overlooked Vancouver’s cruise ship terminal. Every night in the spring and summer around five o’clock I’d hear the ship horns sound and wish I was setting sail to Alaska. Maybe it was that moment when I subconsciously decided a career in travel was pour moi.

What was your first apartment like?
I still dream of the view from my first apartment: a two-bedroom, 30th-floor perch in Vancouver, Canada overlooking Stanley Park, the Pacific Ocean and most importantly, sunsets. I was so lucky to find that spot, in fact, its awesomeness kind of ruined every future place for me.

Was there a significant event from your past that caused you to hit the road? 
Rather than one defining ’ah ha’ moment, my thirst for travel is mixed up in a smoothie of wonder and milestones. In my early-to-mid 20s I remember taking an inventory of my life (and I wanted it to look like) and started working towards aligning my passion with my vocation. Somehow I landed here.

If I were not professional roamer I’d be…
An advertising executive or working in international development. V-e-r-y different worlds; I know.

Did you study abroad in college?
YES. Well, kinda. While in university I took three study abroad classes. To this day they are the most significant educational memories aside from the friends I met and rollerblading at 2am to try and keep myself awake for all-nighters:

Class 1: Media and ethics in NYC (If anyone remembers Sally Jesse Rafael, we spent the afternoon with her—red glasses and all!)

Class 2: International development in the Dominican Republic

Class 3: International business in China

What was the first blog post you ever wrote?  On a scale of 1-10 – how good was it?
On a scale of 1-10 it was a three, which I penned on November 28th, 2009. It featured a photoshopped photo my sister cooked up of my husband and I in safari gear, standing in front of the Eiffel Tower. The idea was to introduce the idea of Trip Styler and show a mash-up of trip styles {ie – urban, active/adventure, sun, etc…}.

The most important things I’ve learned on the road are…
1. Just go; there’s never a convenient time to travel.
2. We have too much stuff, living out a suitcase is a good reminder of what {and how much} we really need.
3. Lastly, never, ever take travel for granted—whether it’s a nearby camping trip into the wild or a luxe getaway to an over-water bungalow in Tahiti, seeing the world is a privilege.

Who is your travel cohort?  
This is cheesy, but my husband is the BEST travel companion–he’s uber-calm and easy going. On weekend adventures our family circle is completed when we can bring along our fur ball dog, Mr. Nacho King.

Courtney Scott

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