“The time for action is now. It’s never too late to do something.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery
89-year-old Russian pensioner Yelena Yerkhova isn’t an average grandma. Granny Lena, as she refers to herself, has recently become popular on Russian media for her active traveler life-style, having already visited several European and Asian countries. The first trip abroad Yelena made in the age of 83 and since then she spends her pension for exploring the world.
Recently babushka (granny in Russian) Lena came back from the trip to Vietnam where she was riding a bike, swam in the sea and tried new, local food. She doesn’t speak English and you know what? It doesn’t stop her from exploring new cultures and making friends.
Two friends from Moscow met Yelena in one of the Vietnamese cafes where granny was trying to explain the waiter that her food was too spicy. The ladies decided to help Yelena out and got inspired by her story so much that posted it over the social nets. Since that time Siberian granny became the inspiration for thousands and was even shown on the local TV channel in Krasnoyarsk, where Yelena is from.
‘I feel like I’ve just started to live,’ she told TRK7 TV channel. ‘I lost both my parents when I was three, Then, when the WWII started I was 14.
‘I spent my young years working at the front, then had a miserable marriage, left my husband and kept working ever since. It was like I saw nothing, and suddenly the whole world has opened up for me’.
The first trip abroad was to Czech Republic, where granny enjoyed so much that came back like four times. Then she expanded the borders and traveled to Turkey, Germany, Poland and Vietnam. Yelena takes trips two times per year and the rest of the time she tries to save her pension.
According to her tour manager Yevgeny Yevtikhov, who is the one taking care of her bookings, he has never seen a senior so eager to explore the world.
In April Yelena will turn 90 and now she is on the way to new destination – Israel. This is what airport Domodedovo posted: ‘An infamous grandmother Lena visited us! She is 89 years old and a secret of her incredible stamina is that she never stops going.’
Granny Lena is not going to stop. She is now in the middle of planning her latest trip to Spain or Italy, of course, if the health and finances allow.