I know a girl with a life is so vibrant, so textured, so fearless. And it is this way because her heart is SO big. She's one of those super cool humans who deserves every super cool thing that comes to her, because she works super hard for it. Everything that manifests in Perri Rothenberg's life does so because she imagines it, and then takes brave action to get up and do it. I fell in love with Perri when we were both fashion students at SCAD. She immediately went went off to Germany — fast forward to today, where she's up and moved to the Arctic. The courage & inspiration of her soul still ignites me through her vibrant instagram and blog, Where Is Per. Do yourself a lovely, motivating favor, and follow her journesy. She's always here today, the moon tomorrow.
Read below for some of her story & heart xx
Where do you come from? And where are you now? What elements of those places have impacted your journey thus far?
I was born in Manhasset New York on a warm spring day in May, 1992. I am going to assume it was sunny considering my love and desire for warmth against my skin (ironic considering I now reside in a place where the sun does not rise for 3 months out of the year, but I will get to that in a minute). From a young age my parents migrated down to Florida (as many New Yorkers do) and grew up with salty hair and sandy toes. While this is where 'I come from,' I really just come from 2 incredible people just like everyone else. My mother worked for the airlines growing up which enabled us to travel and explore the world from a very young age. This has subconsciously impacted my life without even realizing it. When I was 8 we were exploring the streets of Hong Kong. When I was 11 we were plunging with jellyfish in Palau, and at 15 skiing in the Andes down in Chile. This was before travel blogs, Pinterest and Instagram where we have the knowledge to explore these undiscovered locations at our fingertips.
During college, I spent sometime studying in Cannes and Chamonix and interned in New York and Stockholm. For whatever reason I felt the desire to roam. After university (where I studied fashion marketing at the Savannah College of Art & Design), I still felt the need to do something more while keeping learning. So while on a trip to India, I got a job offer at trivago.com, a hotel metasearch based in Düsseldorf, Germany working within influencer marketing. It was 2 days after graduation and I was on a plane to move to a city that I had never even heard of. Living in Germany took my love for meeting new people and exploring new places to the next level. trivago fostered an environment unlike many other corporate office spaces. They put 60+ nationalities under one roof where we all had to work together.
After 2.5 years exploring in Germany, I went on a sailing trip in the Arctic. I found it to be one of the most magical places I have ever seen. There was certain serenity that I found within the nature that I have never experienced before, and knew I would be back. After a random run in with our skipper at the airport, I found myself looking at boats with the founder of Pukka Travels. When he asked if I wanted to join his team, I of course said yes and there I was 3 months later, moving to Tromsø, Norway, 250 miles North of the Arctic circle to help start Pukka Travels, an Arctic sailing company for modern explorers. I survived my first winter, and am ready for my first summer where the sun will not set for the next couple of months.
Each day, each hour and each second of the now has effected my journey in one way or another. I find it imperative to live in the now and find satisfaction in everything from the daily commute, or a small interaction while meandering around town. In retrospect, if I did not talk to a stranger on a chairlift in Chamonix, I wouldn’t have gone sailing in Italy, skiing in the Arctic or be living there.
What is your work? And what, if anything, in your personal life has influenced that?
As mentioned earlier, I studied fashion marketing and business while at the Savannah College of Art and Design. I always thought I was going to be a buyer at a luxurious fashion house or an editor at a high fashion magazine. After interning at Fendi in New York, I thought there was more to life than the art of fashion and wanted to learn more about the tech industry. My first job out of college was in Germany for trivago where I was responsible for blogger relations / influencer marketing at the world’s largest hotel search. I slowly transitioned into the editor for their online magazine and then the lead for the content marketing team for the US. Even though I was still learning new things, I felt as though I was not following my passions in life and was constantly escaping to the mountains in the winter, and beaches in the summer.
I am now responsible for digital strategy and partnerships at Pukka Travels. We combine everything I am passionate about (skiing, wildlife, whale watching, kayaking, paddleboarding, fishing, exploring, mindful adventures, etc.) while sailing in the Arctic. I am beyond happy with the experiences we are providing for explorers. Traveling and having the ability to see and learn that there is more to life than sitting in an office has most definitely influenced what I do on a daily basis. The trips we provide are the types of experiences that really change one's perspective on living, and if I can make just one person feel like I did, I would be very satisfied with my line of work.
What do currently you feel compelled to create?
I have been feeling beyond inspired by the people I have met recently. This is why I have felt inclined to create something people can relate to. With so much negative news in everyone’s feed on a daily basis, I want to be able to inspire people that there is beyond incredible energy in the world. Whether this is through photography or video, I want to make people aware how easy it is to change the way they are living and to really enjoy the 80 (livable) years we have on this Earth. I am also feeling quite compelled to do and learn new things in different places. For example, kitesurfing, diving, ski touring, surfing. These are the types of adventures that fuel these specific creative endeavors.
How did you learn to tap into your intuition? Today, what are your favorite ways to do so?
Having the ability to adapt in so many interesting and irregular scenarios has most certainly made me aware of my intuition and creativity. Being on the move, in different locations and atmospheres is the obvious answer that comes to my mind, but my favorite ways of channeling my creativity is talking to strangers in the cities that I am traveling to. Whether it’s a shop owner in a desolate Greek village, or a tuk tuk driver in India. Everyone has a story, and if we do not share them with one another it’s hard to put life in perspective.
I also spend quite a lot of time reflecting on my journeys, writing memorable moments down and making sure to soak in each and every day as they come. I usually do this while running, it’s a love hate relationship that I end up loving more and more with each step.
What does "Beauty" mean to you?
Beauty is derived from contradictions in the universe. Simple, raw design dancing with chaotic elements of color, sound and texture makes something really stand out. Contrasts between personality types makes for an interesting conversation, and disparity between what society deems as normal and unconventional creates a spark in my soul. I have the most beautiful conversations with those who challenge my beliefs, my thoughts and the way I think. Everyone comes from a different story and it is those stories that makes the person who they are or what they want to become, and to me, that is beauty.
* all images are pulled from Perri's instagram