Local Author Tamela Rich Shares Her Journey
You’ll often see author and travel expert Tamela Rich on the morning news shows. She merrily chats with her hosts about the varieties of cornbread she sampled at the National Cornbread Festival in Tennessee, recommends car games to parents that will help them keep their kids occupied on long road trips, and gives two thumbs up to women thinking of traveling the country as she does—solo.
Unknown is her backstory: how a failed business brought her to a moment of truth at the medicine cabinet, and how learning to ride her black BMW motorcycle from coast to coast gave her a new lease on life.
Rich got her passion for road tripping as a child. Every summer her family would travel from Ohio to California. Some of her favorite childhood memories took place in her parents’ Vista Cruiser station wagon. After her business failed, she wanted to begin traveling again to regain her sense of self.
Three months after getting her license, Rich took her first motorcycle trip to Oregon where she visited 19 states, traveled over 7,200 miles and learned many lessons about life. She has been traveling three times each year on her bike ever since.
Rich uses her story and “lessons from the road” to inspire and motivate people through speaking engagements, books and blog posts. She is in the process of finishing her second book titled, “Steady On: Staying Centered in the Face of Fear.” It is expected to release in the first quarter of 2017. The book is about fear and inspired by the question she is always asked, “Are you afraid?” She isn’t.
She has made some of her favorite memories on the road by taking risks and meeting new people like the Conga Riders in Wyoming who were raising money for breast cancer and the Zoo Keeper from Buffalo who was going blind.
Rich’s motto for traveling is to “Pack Light. Travel Slow. Connect Deep.” “Traveling has taught me that more isn’t better, fast shouldn’t be an unquestioned objective, and that superficiality is best left to social media,” says Rich.
Her passion for traveling is unmatched and she encourages everyone to travel. “Just start going somewhere. Don’t wait until you have the time and money. Traveling doesn’t have to be time consuming or expensive,” says Rich.
Her next stop is Italy where she will be joining other female motorcycle riders on a 9-day excursion.