Cassandra de Pecol, a 27 years old female American tourist is on a mission to tour the world in a record short time.
“Tourism for Peace,” is the slogan she carries and so far she has traveled 192 countries in her pursuit to become the fastest traveler.
She says, “It is a huge success that a female can become the fastest traveler within 16 months, while a man made the same record in almost three years.”
Cassie praises Pakistan for its diversity and beauty and she thinks whatever is written and said about this country is not true.
We happened to get a chance to meet Cassie when she came to Lahore. While talking to Outlook Pakistan she said, “Pakistan is much different from how it is portrayed in the media, the people are peaceful and show the very heartwarming attitude towards the foreigners.”
“What I like about Pakistan is religion. I love Islam, and I like Muslims”.
“Religion has impacted Pakistani society in a very positive way”, she added.
She fell in love with Pakistani food, spicy curry, hospitable people and the place as a whole. At dinner, where we gathered, Cassie loved the peaceful surrounding of the Lahore Food Street.
She regrets that during her short visit to Pakistan, she could not visit the Northern areas, but she promises to come back in June and spend times on hills since she loves to spend time with nature.
She further told us that she liked the Middle East the most because of Islam for being a peaceful religion of the world. At this point in the life when general rhetoric blames the religion to be the cause of conflicts, turmoil, and war around the globe, it was the religion that attracted her the most.
Cassie also visited Israel and Palestine and gave the people message of peace, she met there to the students of Bethlehem University and found out kindness in them.
For her, the religion is just a way to add diversity, it is a contributor to the culture, and that’s it. The difference is the beauty of life.
Being a female and then becoming the world’s fastest traveler is a huge success as she is expecting to complete the tour in 17 months only.
She wanted to do something unique and different in her life while pursuing her goal of traveling the world. But the actual motive behind her travel was the humanitarian factor that is to travel around the world and take the message of love and harmony to every corner of the world.
The tourist said that she never feared anything and didn’t face any gender-based barrier. Even she traveled to the countries that were perceived to be dangerous, but she never fell prey to such perceptions.
Her philosophy was simple, “Don’t Fear, Don’t listen to what others say about you and do whatever the crazy thing you want to do.”
Heterogeneity and peace both are phenomena that are often in conflict with each other. In response to a question that whether the world peace can be achieved on Earth that is home to so many ethnicities, she replied, “there are certain common grounds among human beings, individual denominators that define them; these include the pursuit of happiness and commonalities of the basic need, we just need to fulfill those, and the task is done”.
Cassie’s dream of exploring the world came kicked off when she began traveling to Europe with his brother in 2009. She became the UN ambassador and endorsed by the IIPT (International Institute of Peace through Tourism).
For meeting the costs of her expedition196, Cassandra de Pecol accepts sponsors from the tourism-related businesses in different countries. In Pakistan, she came as the guest of Asia Pacific travel association and was sponsored by the APR (Asiatic Public Relations).
After completing her journey and registering herself as the fastest traveler in the world, she wants to work with UN for meeting its sustainable development goals, make documentaries related to education and then motivate the students and youth for entrepreneurial ventures.
Some of the pictures from her tour are here;