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What If . . . ? cover

  • eBook Edition
    • 978-1-03-917757-4
    • epub, pdf files
  • Paperback Edition
    • 978-1-03-917755-0
    • 5.5 x 8.5 inches
    • Standard Color interior
    • 186 pages
  • Hardcover Edition
    • 978-1-03-917756-7
    • 5.5 x 8.5 inches
    • Standard Color interior
    • 186 pages
  • Keywords
    • Personal memoir,
    • Remote work,
    • Travelling with a disability,
    • Travelling as a senior,
    • Dialysis machine,
    • Travelling with a dialysis machine,
    • Work study leave

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What If . . . ?
Finding New Adventures Through Life’s Obstacles
by Roberta E. Sawatzky

What does retirement mean to you? Do you feel you’ve seen enough of the world? As you approach this later stage in life, the thought of travel can feel beyond intimidating—especially for those of us handling chronic medical conditions. In What If . . . ?, author Roberta Sawatzky highlights the importance of seizing the day when it comes to seeing the world, even and especially as one approaches retirement age. She recounts her personal experience taking a study leave to travel Europe with her husband, focusing on the seven months they spent living in Portugal and Spain as she completed research on leadership in remote and hybrid teams. In a dramatic turn, her husband is diagnosed with end stage renal failure while they are preparing for their trip, resulting in them travelling with a dialysis machine, among other medical supplies. Despite this and other challenges, from language barriers to locating medical services, Sawatzky and her husband immerse themselves thoroughly in the enriching experience of long-term travel, reaping the benefits of an expanded perspective and deeper self-belief for a long time to come. In the end, What If . . . ? testifies to the importance of rising to the challenges you meet in realizing your travel dreams—especially as you reach this next stage of life—and just how vital it is not to let anything stop you.

Roberta E. Sawatzky photo

Roberta E. Sawatzky is a business owner, professor, blogger, and avid traveller with a special interest in leadership in remote and hybrid teams. Originally from Bangor, Northern Ireland, travel has always been a major part of her life, with her family taking many sojourns throughout Europe during her youth. Her experience of childhood immigration to Canada would solidify her interest in cross-cultural contact, international travel, and processes of immersion and assimilation. She continued to nurture this interest in both her personal and professional lives, taking many trips for pleasure with family and friends as well as pursuing international research into the characteristics of remote workers, blogging all the while. When her husband was diagnosed with end stage renal failure and they were forced to adjust their plans for an extended European trip accordingly, Sawatzky knew she wanted to share their story honestly and openly, providing a vulnerable and inspiring account of their trip. With tenacity and resilience—and perhaps a bit of old-fashioned Irish stubbornness—any challenge, she insists, can be met. Sawatzky currently lives in Kelowna, BC with her husband, where together, they enjoy reading, biking, walking, and winery- and café-going. Interested in getting in touch? You can reach her on LinkedIn at or through her business site at You can read her blog at


Roberta E. Sawatzky

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