Petra Nemcova is best known for strutting down the Victoria’s Secret runway in next to nothing — and for her harrowing escape from the 2004 Southeast Asian tsunami that killed her fiancé, photographer Simon Atlee.
Surviving the tsunami changed Petra forever — and since then, she’s devoted her life to helping others through her Happy Hearts Fund, which helps disadvantaged children. The beauty recently sat down to speak with OK!’s Ravi Yande about her new fragrance, Possibilities, and how she’ll spend the holiday season.
Why did you name your fragrance Possibilities?
I believe we create our own reality and we create our own possibilities at the same time. It is a possibility to be with friends, to have a family, to be in love, to have career and goals and it’s up to us as to what choices we make.
Some people are on the negative side. If you are more negative, you limit your possibilities in life and if you are open and positive like I am, you then have endless possibilities and that’s the key to a happy life.
Every experience that I have had in life so far has had both positive and negatives elements to it, but I always believed in the positive side of things. If you are able to overcome the negative thoughts, you will see all the possibilities that are waiting for you. By the good things you learn once, by the bad things you learn twice.
You have been through so much in the last few years with Tsunami and losing your fiancé. How do you stay so positive?
Well, a lot comes from my parents in the way I was brought up. I grew up under Communism and we didn’t have much, so I really appreciated when things did start to happen for me. We did not have the freedom to travel and I did not have much. I had one pair of winter shoes for five years. Now I have so blessed and have so much but it comes from appreciation for every moment.
What are you doing for the holidays this year? Anything special?
The plan is going to Hawaii with my family. We have lots of traditions. Two weeks before the holiday, we start baking with the entire family. My dad makes the dough, my mom makes the cookies, the kids puts the decorations on the cookies, then you put it on the window balcony for it to cool off. My sister and I would always sneak out and eat the cookies when my parents were sleeping. It was so much fun. I have beautiful childhood memories.
What are your New Years Resolution for 2008?
Well, I have my foundation Happy Hearts so I will be doing more work with that.
We just came back from Haiti with Wyclef Jean. It was a great trip. They have such incredible spirits and they have opportunities to bring business to their country. I’m going to Africa next week and next year I’ll be in India as well. We help children to have a safer future and try our best to bring as much as happiness to children’s lives.
Are you dating anyone special?
There is someone who is in Europe…
Interview By Ravi Yande