On August 1, 1999, Polly Letofsky
left her home in Vail, Colorado, and headed west. She traveled across 4 continents, 22 countries, and over 14,000 miles – by foot – to become the first woman to walk around the world.
As an awareness campaign for breast cancer, survivors and well-wishers around the world came to walk with her. Every day strangers welcomed her into their homes and shared meals. The world had embraced her.
But in the middle of Polly’s five year journey, the world suddenly shifted on it’s axis when September 11 flung us all into a crossroads in world history. Polly suddenly found herself embedded in a vastly changing world and realized she could never retrace her steps home – they’d vanished in a tide of world events.
has been featured in over 2,000 newspapers, magazines, radio and television stations around the world, including Good Housekeeping, CNN International
, The CBS Early Show
, NBC’s Your Total Health
, and Fine Living Channel’s Radical Sabbatical.
Newcastle Productions has recently released Polly’s GlobalWalk,
a documentary chronicling her journey.
A natural storyteller, since her return, Polly has been speaking to rapt audiences around the country. She richly details her journey with humor and honest reflection, the good times and the hardships. Sometimes serious, sometimes funny, always inspirational, Polly personifies the spirit of commitment and perseverance that will compel your audience to take on life’s biggest challenges – one step at a time.
Five Questions with Polly Letofsky
What Makes You Come Alive?
Even after years on the road -- walking over 14,000 miles -- I stilll ook forward to going for a walk every morning. I love the smell and the mood in greeting a morning.
Pivotal turning point in your life?
There really isn't a singular pivotal turning point. Like a good recipe there are many many -- sometime small-- ingredients, that make up a good stew.
An Act of Kindness You'll Never Forget?
When I was walking through rural Thailand I stopped to have lunch at a small out-of-the-way cafe. When I went to pay the bill the host told me that it had already been paid. "By who?" she said, "He's gone already, but he paid your bill." <br /><br />So not only did someone pay my bill, but they didn't want so much as a thank you or even recognition for it. I take that with me every day.
One Thing On Your Bucket List?
To own a house with a back yard and a tree, so I can get my posse of three cats and two dogs,.
One-line Message for the World?
Trust the journey.