Alison was home schooled around the world, namely wherever her parents' job took them. She learned her childhood lessons on the back of an elephant, in a tent near Mt. Everest, and in countless other adventurous settings. In fact, she saw the inside of a class room for the first time in Nepal, when she was seven years old. "I thought - Wow! I am in an actual school with other children. And a teacher. Inside a building. How strange. How weird. How exotic." Growing up in the most remote and colorful corners of this planet,
Alison developed a strong passion for traveling, exploring and living among different
cultures. Eager to have a break from her adventurous lifestyle, Alison decided
to pursue her dream of becoming a filmmaker and attended the University of
Southern California. While studying at USC, she finished a short film called
‘Rita’ which showcased her childhood experience attending school with the Sherpa
children at the base of Mt. Everest. The film won international acclaim,
winning the Telluride Film festival and a nomination for an MTV movie award. When Alison graduated with highest honors in 2008, she joined her parents in
the Peruvian Andes; there, she shot ‘INCANtations’, a documentary that gained international
recognition and propelled her career. Since then, Alison was honored by Meryl
Streep for being one of the top emerging female artists, she was part of the
production team of blockbuster movie ‘Eat Pray Love’, and starred in one of
Discovery Channel’s latest series.
Today, Alison keeps journeying around
the world and is involved in a broad set of activities. She is launching her
own inspirational adventure series called ‘Alison’s Adventures’, is an avid
surfer, hula-dancer, TV-host, and recently wrote her autobiography that she
plans to transform into a feature film. In addition to the outdoors, the
classroom has become another place that the young traveller has fallen in love
with; Alison is a keen speaker and visits schools across the globe to inspire
young kids to go out and explore the world first hand.
Why did you agree to become an Amazer?
I agreed to be part of Amazers because it is my dream to make the world a smaller place through my Alison's Adventures film series. As a storyteller I am always seeking inspiration, OR hoping to inspire someone with my work - I feel Amazers is an amazing platform - pun intended - for sharing inspiration, adventure, and dreams.
How is it to grow up around the world, and to be schooled in a tent or in a Himalayan village?
Growing up around the world, home schooled in some of the most exotic and remote locations on earth, gave me a very different perspective on what is important in life, and the meaning of home. Since the grass is always green in someone else's life, I always dreamed of going to a regular school and having a home with a white picket fence and my very own backpack full of homework. The first time I attended a "real school" was at the base of Mt. Everest with the Sherpa children and we had to climb over a 17,000 feet pass to get there - and we had to make fires every few hundred yards to keep from getting frostbite...Now looking back on all the wild experiences my incredible parents exposed me to, I have an extreme appreciation for life, and I truly believe home and family are where the heart is.
What have you experienced and learned during your travels that you would like to share with everyone?
Travel fuels the soul! I believe experiential education is the most valuable thing in the world. Growing up constantly on the go, I was fortunate to have wise elders from every country as my "text books," and the world as my classroom. For example the shaman for Eat Pray Love was my painting teacher, and master Sri K Pattabhi Jois was my Yoga Teacher...There are so many ways to live a life, and I think it is important to experience a day in someone else's culture, customs and family to get a perspective on what is normal, what is happiness and what is success. With Alison's Adventures I am "your passport to the world!" It is my dream to share with you the magic that exists on this planet, and the incredible people and places that will hopefully inspire you as much as they have inspired me! And trust me – humor (and sunscreen of course) is the best thing to pack when going on an adventure.