In 1980, Gwen K. Vroomen quit a monotonous job, went to the corner bar, and – on the bartender’s urging – threw a dart at a world map tacked on the wall. She had never heard of Goa but knew immediately she needed to go. Three months later she was celebrating Hindu New Year at a tea garden high in the hills of Kerala, fireworks exploding below. She wrote of that night: “I was resuscitated by color, redeemed by the vibrant unknown.” Her self-proclaimed “Journey out of darkness,” dotted with unforgettable stories of night markets, river floats, and harrowing moped rides, inspired a generation of young Americans eager to buck the drudgery of ordinary life.
“I was lost, aimless, and depressed. Now I’m only two of those things.”
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