When her husband passed away eighteen years ago, Mary Lou Mahaney, then 72, found herself with a lot of alone time on her hands. She always wanted to travel, but her husband was never into the idea. “But after his passing,” Mahaney, a retiree from Silver Spring, MD, says, “I decided that I had to see the world.”
And see the world she did. With a vengeance. Today, at 90, Mahaney has visited every continent and over 100 countries. She also had some amazing adventures along the way. And she’s not planning on slowing down anytime soon. “I’ve gone ATVing in the jungles of Africa, luging in New Zealand, hot air ballooning in Australia, climbed the Tiger’s Nest in Bhutan, parasailed in Greece and ridden a horse bareback in Argentina,” she wrote in an email to BuzzFeed. Traveling invigorates and inspires her, she says. “I just wake up every morning, loving life to the fullest.”
Serving up some barbecue. Argentina, 2012.
About to perform a traditional dance with some locals. Panama, 2011.
The lions can sense your coolness. Botswana, 2010.
They were taking to long to bring her a glass, and Mary Lou was thirsty. Germany, 2014
ATVing in Namibia, 2010
(Images: Mary Lou Mahaney via BuzzFeed)
So what’s next on the itinerary? Mahaney is planning a cruise to the Caribbean, where she wants to go zip-lining. After that, she’s off to explore Burma. Beyond that? Well… anything and anywhere is possible for Mary Lou Mahaney.