Sometimes – admitting growing more frequently – I wake up with the urge to run. However, the goal is not to run away from something – it’s to something. I want to travel. Explore. Wander. Drift. I want to meet people in faraway places, explore landscapes that have only manifested in my dreams, and experience cultures that are so diverse from anything that I’ve ever encountered or imagined.
Ever since my good friend Gregory gave me a copy of Julia Chaplin’s book, ‘Gypset Travel‘ for my 24th birthday, much of my inspiration has been derived from travel, and in that sense, the urge to travel in itself – the strange pull of the unknown. Julia’s term, gypset (an unconventional, bohemian approach to life), has been a constant source of inspiration for my personal style as well as a large part of CULT’s ethos (savor the journey, go your own way, rebel, etc).
In another one of Julia Chaplin’s books, Gypset Style, she highlights the bohemian story of the famous Mignot sisters, who have coined themselves Les Gazelles. The sisters live the ultimate gypset lifestyle, and perhaps are the true inspiration behind the term itself.
According to an article in Life Content: “The story about these girls is movie material. The family consists of nine brothers and sisters, some born in France and others in Africa. Their parents raised them in various places around the world, from Bora Bora to St. Barth’s, which is where they got the idea to buy a seventy-five foot wooden boat. They then painted the boat in Rasta colors of red, gold, and green, and sailed around the world for a decade. They accumulated friends, lovers, and children along the way, and soon the gypsy family traveled in three boats, seeking out the best surf towns and forgotten beaches around the world. While the brothers kept sailing, a few of the sisters decided to settle in Sayulita, Mexico, where they all live together in a building that also houses their boutique, Pachamama. It conveniently overlooks the best surf spot in town.”
Les Gazelles spend their days diving for sea pearls with their tribe, reworking their treasures into beautiful jewelry pieces and adornments where they sell them in their local Sayulita boutique, Pachamama.
I find myself trying harder everyday to take a page from the book of Les Gazelles – to run towards adventure, instead of away from the unknown, and to truly embrace not only the ideal of travel, but the urge to travel – the warm embrace of experiencing new cultures, foreign landscapes, and the comfort of solitude, and most importantly, that inexplicable magnetic pull towards the open road.