Who's behind gypsy50s

Connecting travellers is something Fuzz Cairns knows all about.  An international traveller since her early twenties, she has thirty years experience in as both host and guest, and seems a natural choice to show others how to follow her lead.

“gypsy50s.net is born from a dream of being free. Truly free. Free to wander around the globe knowing I can find a friendly house anywhere I go where I can stay. Somewhere I can share some food, a glass of wine, a story, a new adventure.” Fuzz Cairns

That's where this whole gypsy networking idea came from - the strongest desire to travel and meet people. Meet the founder and traveller-in-chief at gypsy50s, Fuzz Cairns, whose years of travel and hosting experience make her the right person to be helping others have that same experience:

Fuzz isn’t all that common a name, but it’s the nickname she has carried since she was born. Her entire family and all of her friends call her by this name and have done so for over fifty years, so it’s never even been an option to change it.

gypsy50s is the result of a passion she has had her entire life. Since she was a child, she dreamed of travelling the world and imagined herself in faraway places experiencing the local cultures. She’s never been someone who researches or studies the place she’s travelling to because, for her, it’s the people who make the places she visits.

Her journey as a gypsy traveller began in the early 1980s as a backpacker, and then later with her beautiful young daughter, staying in local villages with local families. The hospitality and love they received from these people - from all walks of life - was incredible!  It was these personal experiences and friendships that made her realise that the best way to see a new destination is through the eyes of the people who live there.

She’s travelled Australia, Europe, Asia, the US, and South America, and loved everywhere she’s been. She remembers going to a small village in the mountains in Timor, when her daughter was about three, where white people were not a common sight and english was barely spoken.  The women of the village fussed over her daughter, they laughed together watching the kids playing and before she knew it, they were invited into homes, sharing meals, laughing and talking as best they could through the language barrier. It was a beautiful experience that proved to her that behind differences in language, culture and affluence are not so great when we find the common ground. And that is where friendships and the best memories are made.

Since then, she’s stayed with new friends in hundreds of towns and cities around the world and was determined to share that kind of experience when she returned to Australia. Over the years she’s opened her home to travellers from all corners of the world, sharing food, life and laughter with them all. She’s played tour guide in her own town, showing people the area, helping them find jobs or where to buy a decent cheap car or sending them to stay with other like-minded friends in different parts of the world. She’s still doing it!  Her reward has been making lifelong friends with those travellers, through shared interests and experiences, and now she wants to share that type of experience with everybody.

Nine years ago she moved to Mexico – where she built her dream home - from Australia to fulfil one of her long-term dreams, and settled into her new community.  She started thinking about how she could create a network of travellers and the gypsy50s concept started coming together.  As a 50-something herself, she knows the issues, barriers and advantages surrounding travelling, meeting people and retirement - she’s in that position right now. Her aim is to inspire the 50+ to take the opportunity and find the confidence to travel and connect with like-minded people. It's all about keeping life interesting.