The Last Plane Home

S1 Eps 16 - Exploring Mexico During Spring Break

April 12, 2021 Guy Guyton / Michael Sharkey Season 1 Episode 16
The Last Plane Home
S1 Eps 16 - Exploring Mexico During Spring Break
Show Notes Transcript

In this episode, we speak with the Podcast Coach himself, Michael Sharkey

Michael has lived a nomadic life for over 10 years, including world schooling his kids. During the pandemic, Michael and his family decided to move to Oaxaca, Mexico, which “never turned off their open sign”.

In this episode, we talk about: 

  • Living in Mexico during the pandemic
  • The value in road-tripping and 
  • How travel will start to feel more local this year

Want to ask Michael a question? You can reach him at

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Until next time travelers, Peace!

Hey there traveler and welcome to the last plane home podcast for those who enjoy exploring other cultures in locations through travel. On the show we share travel stories and help travelers get the resources they need to see the world on their own terms. I'm your host Guy Guyton and Today on the show we have with me the podcast coach himself, Michael Sharkey. Michael is a podcast host and coach who has been living the digital nomad life for quite some time, he and his wife decided to world school their kids traveling on the road for over 10 years. In this episode, Michael and I chat about living in Mexico during the pandemic, the value in road tripping and how traveled will start to feel more local this year. Okay, well, before we jump in two quick things, one, I want to make sure you guys know we do have a travel newsletter. So if you want to get information like this delivered straight to your inbox, we send that twice a month, you can click that in the link in the show notes below. Or check us out on Instagram at travel with guy and the link to our newsletter is in the bio. Alright, I'm excited travelers. So let's get into the episode. Hey, Michael, how's it going? You know, I'm good. But like just a little behind the scenes because you are living on the West Coast working on East Coast time. We're doing this early. We're doing this early. So I I am such a fan of this. I do like getting up early. But I have mad respect for anyone that can do what you do live in on a living in the West Coast working on East Coast time. I think it's a lot of fun. I mean, the sun's not up yet. But by the time we're done recording, I think it'll, they'll start to show up and come just brightens your mood, you know? Yeah, yeah, yeah. And I gotta say, You're like, You're awake, and you're going and I'm like, nursing my second cup of coffee. And I won't fall asleep in the middle of this. But uh, hopefully my answers are as succinct as they need to be for for this time of the day. So well, I try to I try to not have a coffee until afternoon, which is controversial. I used to not do coffee at all until recently. And then go ahead. I'm like, you know, I'm I'm doing it. I'm going false. And I'm in, in, in well, cool, man. Yeah, it's good to be here. It's really, really good to be here. Thank you for the opportunity to, to be on your podcast as well as let me dive into your mind a little bit later on in this conversation about your podcast and the work that you're doing. Yeah, absolutely. And you're recording from a bit of a paradise, especially during this quarantine tell us where you're at. Yeah, so ay. ay. Ay ay ay loosely say moved. I mean, technically, I move because I brought as much stuff as I could, as suitcases and stuff like that. But I'm currently in wahaca, Mexico, which is the southern side of Mexico, I'm actually in the city of well, hockaday, Juarez wahaca is actually a region. But it's just beautiful here. We had some friends down here and like a lot of people with COVID. You know, we were we were kind of in a place where my wife and I she has a travel business as well. We could live anywhere we want. I mean, we had that freedom of flexibility prior to COVID. But it was COVID was sort of that like, Well, you know, we have a house in St. Petersburg, Florida, my in laws are living in that house. Nothing was keeping us in Florida. Kids are getting older, that sort of thing. And we've traveled so much with them for the last 10 to 12 years that a move to Mexico was like, Yeah, let's do it. Why not? So like, like little you know, our family. Like this wasn't a disruptive Well, when you move animals to another country, there's a level of disruption that comes with, but you know, it just like it was a, my wife and daughter were visiting friends and wahaca. And it was like, we decided almost in a day, my daughter, we found this house that I'm currently in. And it was like, you know, three bedroom, three bath, beautiful two story with a roof view of the mountains. And it was $750 a month. And we were like, Huh, that sounds affordable. Let's do it. So. So yeah, so we've been down here for a few months. And it's just, you know, trying not to let a global pandemic completely, you know, deconstruct our lives and just trying to live and you know, the people here are wonderful. The food here is wonderful. The food here is just next level. But yeah, it's, it's, it's a really cool place to be. It's a fantastic place to be for a little while. Yeah, we had a similar line of thinking where we are in New York. And we're fortunate enough to have a car we were driving to certain locations like we could drive an hour and a half away. into jersey to find a park and hike and just get outside. We thought that was a great idea. And then we go there, it was crowded, you know, and the height of this, we were trying to stay away from everyone entirely, you're really trying to isolate. It just couldn't. I didn't think it was feasible do that in New York until we moved out here to the Bay Area. And it's been so rewarding to have a little bit of different culture, but also so much to do Outdoors is really just been like a new energy for us, I think. Yeah, when we were at the height of COVID. For us, we were in St. Petersburg, Florida. And it was interesting, because it was such a unique concert associated, this whole thing has been a sociological observation. But there's a huge population in Florida, especially the west coast of seniors. So you literally had like, everybody over the age of say, 50 go inside and not come out. But there's this rising population, especially in the St. Petersburg area, younger, like, you know, artists, community, people in their 20s, you know, everybody out, so you'd go out at like, five in the afternoon, and the parks were packed, like they'd never been that packed. Like when everything was open, people wouldn't go out. But now that they were told that they couldn't go out, it was just slammed, you know, and it was just it was all young people and they were riding their bikes. And so it was like, sometimes we'd walk around St. Pete, you know, and March, April, May of 2020. And we're like, Is there really a pandemic going on? Because it sure doesn't look like it. So we're the same thing. we'd walk by like Central Park, you can see people playing pickup football games like this is got to be the worst thing you can do. Right? You guys are tackling one another? What do you What's happening here? I don't think that's like the I don't think people are supposed to do that right now. Man. So now, I mean, we're in this in late March. And you know, how has it been in Mexico? You know, so much of that has been in the country. It's been widely open. A lot of my friends have been going in and out of like the Cancun area, and Tulum areas specifically. Are you seeing, you know, an influx of like tourists into the haka and area and and if you're exploring, you know, a little bit more Mexico as well. Yeah. So it's interesting, a couple of stories tell around travel in this area is so walk as I was saying, it's like we live in the city, but the region sort of has a long stretch along the Pacific coast. And what we noticed when we were we were actually here in February of 2020. Right before everything hit, and it just was normal. It was sort of that like the the calm right before the storm. And then yeah, as you mentioned, Mexico's borders never closed, like, at no point during this pandemic, did they ever, you know, isolate anyone or close to in or out. And they're kind of like it like we joke like they're open sign never turned off. So when we made the move here in the, in the noon, October, November of 2020. You know, it was it was pretty quiet. You know, one of our friends has a cafe, right in the heart of wahaca. City, you know, and she never, she never closed her business, never went out of business. But she said, there were a couple of months that just were like, how am I going to pay people this month? She said that, you know, November, it was she felt it start nowhere near normal. But it starts to pick up. And then what we've all noticed now in February into March of 2021, it is just picking back up. And it's like, you'll go down to Centro in the evening. And it's, you know, I like I said, I wasn't here, I didn't live here two years ago, or a year ago, when it was maybe more or a year and a half ago, maybe when it was more normal. But like, the streets are alive. It's very vibrant. Everybody's wearing a mask, locals are wearing a mask. But then what was really interesting as we traveled over to the coast, so we were in the area that's like mazoon Tay and Puerto Escondido in that area. And we had heard that that area was like, you know, they would arrest you if you didn't wear your mask and things like that. But man, I gotta be honest, we were over there. And if you can kind of imagine a community of people that were very international, so you heard accents from all around the world languages from all around the world. Everybody was just really like, I mean, kind of like what you would sort of envision a beach community at any point. You know, they weren't really they weren't really wearing masks a whole lot. They were just, I mean, it's a beach communities and most people aren't a beach and they don't mandate that on the beach. Yeah. So they would just leave a beach and come in, which is that's, you know, so it was just, it felt very normal. One of our people that we got to know while we're there, moved there from Southern California. And she had gone from like, you know, you're in California. So like, everything's locked down to suddenly everything's open. So it was like, Whoa, okay, this is like, you know, the world. But even in that space of openness here in Mexico, you know, whatever statistics are coming out, there's no like, Oh, my God, you know, hospitals are jammed or things like that. There's none of that people are just living their life. And now tourism. Yeah, is. It's ramping up quickly. Yeah, it's like you said, the welcome sign never went out. And, you know, I was facetiming, some buddies who were down there a couple days ago, and you're seeing people today in a cafe and walking around, I'm like, What are you doing? There's people around you. Are you scared? Yeah, yeah, it's very, it's, you know, like I said, it's not, it's probably not pre pandemic, but it's, it's ramping up really quickly. And I just think the people here, you know, from our friends that are locals that have lived here for a long time, or grew up here, say that a lot of the locals in wahaca, for the most part are like, you know, we'll take the precautions that we need to take. But you know, our business has been tourism, our entire livelihood for generations has been, you know, making crafts to sell to people who visit. So they're just they welcome the opportunity, and they welcome people coming back in. Yeah, I think the number of searches that I see on I mean, right now everything is in Khun talam or Hawaii, I think those places are going to explode. You know, we hit April, May and June, especially, you know, this time in context, this time last year, a lot of controversy with the Spring Breakers, and you're like, we're just gonna go, we're gonna be wherever anywhere anyone's gonna take us we're gonna go to Mexico definitely got a huge influx in Florida. And, you know, you talk about St. Pete and stuff like that to all these other kind of, like, really? Do we go here now and I think we're gonna, or we're, it's like Groundhog's Day that things are happening in? Yeah, we had a because, you know, St. Petersburg Clearwater area, which is a big spring, big break destination. And last year, at this time, they had closed, Miami and Fort Lauderdale beaches, and our beaches had not closed. So we kind of got this spillover. And, and yeah, our beaches, especially Clearwater, I remember, there was like, I don't know, like a New York Times picture or something that showed Clearwater Beach. And it was like, it could have been any, any day in a year it was packed. And at the time, we just were like, Oh, so we just like, let's stay away from the beaches. And then like a week later, they closed the beaches. So that's wild. Yeah. So you know, with vaccines and things coming out, you know, what are your thoughts on travel in 2021? Any places your tittering or other places you just wouldn't go, even if you're fully vaccinated? No, you know, I think it's really, we've kind of come to a place. So as I mentioned, my wife has a travel business and her travel was more Portugal, Morocco, that area. And what we've really come to know since we've been here is we, we've found ourselves in a country that has so much to offer and so much to explore. So as my wife is sort of reinventing her travel business, she's focusing in on Mexico, and I really think we're just going to kind of explore here. You know, I love Europe. I love like, I've been craving to get back over there. It's been a few years since I've been spent any time in Europe. But, you know, it's just this point with all the madness around, you know, are you vaccine, are they going to do passports, you know, you know, I've got to fly back to the states in a few days. So I've got to get a COVID test for that, you know, will they shut borders down again, and there's just so much unknown where, again, we kind of like, Huh, we're in Mexico, and they're like, Yeah, we did it. We look at the UN, I think it's specific to Mexico, but it's just the the red, yellow green. If it's, you know, you can visit here you can visit here and what the restrictions are. Yeah, and we looked at, we looked at a map of Mexico. This is literally within the last couple of days, and it was mostly yellow with some green. So, you know, green is just like, hey, come and go, though irony is that we were looking at watching some other YouTube travelers, and they were in a green section, I think maybe Chiapas in Mexico. And, and they actually noted that it was more locked down than other places. And I think they sort of rationalized that the locals there were like, We don't want to lose our greens to have any sort of self imposed some lockdowns. But yeah, I mean, I think for travel you know, we are We're on a tourist visa in Mexico right now, which means we can come stay for six months, and then we have to cross a border at least every six months. So the process to get temporary residency is pretty easy. The irony is you have to get it in the States, you can't get it here, you have to start the process in the States. And so, so I think my family's just, we're going to get residency, just so that we don't have to leave every six months, you leave every six months, but you can literally cross the border into Guatemala or Arizona State in the night, come back the next day, and you get a new six months. But that's kind of a pain. So we're just, you know, doing the paperwork to do you know, one or two year residency. And then, you know, you can register a car here and things like that. But yeah, I think as far as your question about travel, you know, this is a beautiful part of the world that that has so much to offer. So I think exploring here now, and then we'll just see how the world opens up over the course of the next six months, year, two years, things like that. Yeah, I think that's amazing. I recently just because of this pandemic, and doing different research now, I've traditionally traditionally thought about Mexico as Tulum and gang code, and you go to all these other places for culture, and you'll spend a week you'll spend weeks in Europe, you'll go to this place, and you just go to Cancun to just have fun, hit the beach, and then have all this research. I'm like, wow, there's a lot. There's a lot to do to explore in Mexico, strong cultural base of food is just fantastic. And, you know, things are things a lot of them getting stronger since COVID. So I'm actually looking forward to spending some time some more time Mexico two and 2.1 of the thing that's funny is that six months visa, I have a couple of friends who are I guess they're calling themself digital nomads, I guess it's fine. And suddenly, one of the biggest problems they have is you need to catch a flight. Usually, depending where you are, like you need to catch a flight out of the country to in and go back in. So either way, you need to have enough people to pay for some of these flights. And a lot of these folks are living on, you know, sub 20 bucks a day. And then every six months, you have to catch a flight. So it's an interesting travel problems out there that we're seeing in these new economies. And just the way we're kind of living. Yeah, one of the one of the travel hacks that I've seen for especially and I think I saw this from somebody who would be in that digital nomad, laptop lifestyle space, is a during COVID, Guatemala required a negative COVID test to come in. So I can't validate if this is true or not, but I you know, it's on the internet. So it must be sarcasm, but they would go to Guatemala, cross the bridge, because it's a bridge over there. In this one particular you'd cross the bridge, you'd get over across the bridge, you'd say, Oh, you know, I don't have a COVID test. And the officials in Guatemala would say, I'm sorry, you can't come in and they would turn you around, you'd walk back across the bridge. And then the Mexican consulate of Mexico remember, like, Okay, welcome to Mexico, boom, standard passport, six more months. So it was like, it was like, What? But yeah, so And again, I can't validate that. But I was like, that's it. That's a interesting travel hack in these days of COVID-19. So but yeah, so I mean, it's, it's good down here. Like you said, the culture, the food and wahaca is kind of the food center of Mexico. And I mean, look, this is not a big city. It's a very hospitable city, the people are amazing. The people are wonderful. But I don't know that I've had bad food yet. Like, I don't know that I've had a meal where I'm like, maybe I've had average, but like your your street stands, you know, your, your tacos that are a quarter percent of the best tacos you'll ever have in the spices and it's just, and then when you you know, spend a little bit of money, spend a little bit of money and go on a, you know, like a fancier dinner. And even then a fancier dinner. It's like, oh, wow, we, you know, it was $20 a percent or something like that becomes just an experience like you've never had anywhere in the world. So yeah, and I love food. I don't know that I would put myself in the foodie category, but I just love food. And this place does not. I just I don't know that there's, you know, sure to being you know, I lived in New York for two years. So in New York, same thing with San Francisco. Your options are limitless. But here, it's just, it's limitless and incredibly affordable. That's amazing. One of my favorite things is when you're traveling and get street meat, and it's just faygo just is amazing. And you're not worried about getting sick and sometimes like that's gonna happen because of where you are and just adapting but affordable and good. st meet is is one of the best things you can just hunt down fine. Yeah, it's amazing. It's amazing. Yeah. And they have that here, you just go into a market. And we had this like, like, you know, you can buy all your vegetables and everything and then you know, all these what would it be car nurseries, that we'd have all this, this meat set up and they just cook it for you and put it in oil, you know? And then you've got meals for like the next two or three days for like $5 Yeah, it's crazy. It's crazy. We had this similar setup, where we're in Brazil, we went to fogo de Chao, I think it's one of the one of the flagship stores there. And forgive me, not Brazilian, all you can eat steak house. And I just remember rounds and rounds and rounds of food. And it goes to the point where you have like a red card and a green card. And we're like, red, stop green is keep bringing us food, just left it on green. And then we ordered bottles and drinks and we're like, wow, this is gonna be the first night in Brazil. We know any, you know, any better, we could look at the currency exchange. And it was like, I think we ended up paying like 35 bucks a person. I was like, you would have spent that on the first drink. Exactly. Exactly. Yeah, that's it's crazy. It really is. It's it's a it's just, it's unbelievable. And I'm very grateful to be here. You know, I mean, like it like to go back to that question about traveling right now. You know, it's, it's, it's a, it's an amazing place to explore, you know, you can kind of come and go as you please. Then we travel with respects, have always travelled with, with honoring what locals need and what they want, and always trying to, you know, support what their needs are, you know, not traveling, like, hey, let's just go to Cancun and go to the Hard Rock or whatever. But, you know, so it's very, I think that's highlighted right now. And I wonder and, you know, again, my wife's travel business, which she focuses on taking women, like over the age of 45, who've never really traveled and showing them different parts of the world, is that I wonder if like, you know, travel is going to change? You know, she's talked about, like, Can we get more conscious as we travel? So we're not just instagramming everything and you know, disrespecting, you know, you know, cool places in the world, that we just come in, and we're just more, you know, respect those in this community. Yeah, so we do try to do that. And, and maybe that will be one of the ways that COVID has, you know, shaped the future is to make travel a little more intentional, a little more conscious. Yeah, I'd like to see that. I've seen some a lot of folks thinking about how they can reduce their impact and their footprint and things like that. And, you know, maybe there'll be another episode of the blog, too, just to focus on, you know, the sustainability and just the appreciation for the cultures that you have when you're when you're going there. Yeah, I think that's a, I think that's a huge part of it. And it really makes a better journey to really make some much better experience. So what about you like what I mean, you're the travel guy, literally, what's the what's the like? What's your take, like, you know, and I do want to ask you about your podcast, but what's like, how do you see this unfolding as we move forward, and things like that, you know, I do agree with you, when you say that travel won't be more intentional. So I think we spent about a year of exploring, travel differently, and exploring our own backyards more. So I think an appreciation for local, whether it's your own neighborhoods and exploring that will, will expand. And a lot of folks really want to make sure that so many businesses closed, so many restaurants closed, I think a lot of folks want to make sure that that culture can come back where they are. So I think that's one and two, I think there's going to be a pent up demand or staying kind of within your region. So you know, I sent us on my newsletter the other day, you know, the areas that I'm looking for, I'd actually don't want to go more than, you know, six to eight ish hours away. Because if anything expands a COVID is not done. Even if we we get fully vaccinated. We are our production and our outputs pretty good, but it's ahead of the rest of the world. So some of those other countries can catch up. I just don't want to be in a spot personally, where I'm really far away from home and can't come back to the states if I needed to. So for me, you know, I'm really narrowing my list towards like a Mexico, Hawaii, which technically is domestic, but I'm kind of trying to stay close by for those reasons. I also don't want to spend a whole bunch of time on like, you know, it's a long 12 hour flight to let's say, I'm going to Europe or Asia or something like that. And, you know, I can't be there for a little longer things aren't open. So I think for a while we're going to start to experience things more local. I think this summer, we're going to See a huge boom and just like RV trips. Yeah, we did that I did that outside of college. And it was amazing. There's this company in the Midwest that manufactures RVs. And they sell them in key markets like Denver, San Fran la Vegas, and you basically pay $1 a day. And then they pay you like a couple $100 and a stipend. So you'll get 500, they charge you $1 a day just so they can cover insurance and things like that. And you just relocate it. So you have about seven, seven days to get from A to A to B. And you can just explore so many the state parks that are going to be open and things like that. So I think that's kind of where I'm at. I mean, we we moved from New York to San Fran. We flew when we shipped our car and people like Why didn't you do the drive? And it's because nothing was open? You know, the state parks were shut down back then. Yeah. So I think this summer, with all those things opening, we're gonna get a lot of appreciation for just a local. Yeah, I would agree with that. And hats off in the summer of 2014. In the summer of 2015. We did that we did the full RV summers. Yeah, I loved it. I absolutely loved it. And it was so much fun. Like you said, you know, Stan, in Xi'an or Grand Canyon or actually living in Florida, we took a month to get to California, spent a month in California, and then took a month to get home. So we got to explore your part of the world. I love Northern California. But yeah, I think, you know, you're right is staying close and having that sort of regional experience of maybe something because for so long, we're like, oh, I can't wait to fly to Thailand, or Norway or wherever? Well, now, it's like, I mean, especially where you are now. I mean, you've got probably, from my I mean, again, Florida coming this from a Florida perspective, where it's flat, the beaches are beautiful, but it's flat, and you're driving 10 hours to get to topography. I mean, literally, we would go camping in North Georgia, in the Smokies, and it was a 10 hour drive. But you I mean, you could drive to Tahoe, you could drive to, you know, Big Sur, you could draw, you know, so you're, you're close to a lot of incredibly beautiful things. And that's one of the things where we are in Mexico is we have kind of a high desert. Mohawk is about a mile high, but it's a desert community. But we can drive to about a mountain range about 10,000 feet. So you get the pine trees and sort of that aesthetic, and the drive like three more hours. And you're in the beautiful, rugged Pacific coast. So that sort of exploration of the things that are close to you, you know, it's like, oh, wow, I never realized this was you know, as beautiful as it is, regardless of where you are and finding those things around you. So yeah, I think that's, that, to me, that makes a lot of sense. We love that here. Being in Finn friends easily. It's a launchpad. And three hours in an interaction gets you a lot of value in me talking about like we just got back from Tahoe this weekend. But a three hour drive and contracts and it's beautiful in the summer, beautiful in the winter. You know, we go snowboarding, it's a really cute snowboarding town. In that area Lake Tahoe itself never really freezes over. So the contrast between that like vibrant blue and the snowcapped mountains is just an amazing sight. Like, I'll send you some photos and then a summer even to like you're going on those windy roads. And you're like, you're just sad when you're the driver because you really want to look out the window and appreciate it. Right. But then you go through ourselves or last and you're like the Monterey area and Big Sur area and, you know, these really cute coastal cities that you know, they're just kind of fun and beautiful. And then they're just hidden away. So it says I'd say and there's some cities like slo that, even you know, aren't that mainstream, but basically anything on that coastal road. You're gonna have those cliffs. No legend is realistic. Well, I'm at the edge of this country right now. Think of it that way. Yeah. And you know, the other thing is you go north, and you get up and you know, a lot of people are like, Oh, yeah, you're north of San Francisco, and you're in Napa and Sonoma. But some of my some of my favorite places are the towns around like Bodega Bay and Garen Ville you know, like, they're, like, forget the name of the park where where it goes to like the redwoods. But, like, if you just go a little bit north of there to these small little quaint Northern California towns, you know, Sebastopol in that area, where it's just like, beautiful. And they're just like, cool little towns, you know, I mean, yes, yes. Their main industry has always been, you know, vineyards and such and wineries but, but even like, you know, like, that was fun for like a day. It's a cool, we just drank a lot of really good why I'm not a big wine, like it's good and I can appreciate it. But I was more about hiking like, let's go to let's go out to the coast. You know, you know, let's go to this beach or Let's go, you know, up to a Point Reyes or whatever. So yeah, you are in a, you're in a, probably from a, hey, we can just drive to really pretty places. You know, the Bay Area is just about about as perfectly located as you can be. And I've always been a much bigger fan of Northern California and Southern California. Yeah, I look at it as you know, Marin Marin County, just outside another awesome spot where there's just hikes or there's lookouts or there's photo spots or there's cute restaurants or there's vineyards in California is got the biggest density of vineyards, you know, in the country, for sure. So there's kind of something for everyone. I mean, we were doing well watching either name on right, just a lot of things that are really close by to us. So you know, that that local vibe, I think it's going to come up and even you know, I say that an ember being spoiled in California, but I have friends who are living in Montana, you know, the least densely populated and they're talking about Yeah, I was like hanging out with a moose the other day. You know, people people are exploring their local, you don't have to be in one of these major metros to do it. Yeah, and you said it like, you know, in New York, you know, you could drive, you know, to Jersey, you could drive up to the Catskills and things like that. So, so it's just about exploring where you're at. Yeah, I can see that being travel. You know, I mean, again, I, there will come a day where I do want to get on a plane and I want to take a flight, you know, to some to some land that requires a, you know, crossing an ocean. But yeah, but for today, I think it's fine. You know, especially like going back to where we are, we've we've found ourselves in this amazing part of the world that we can kind of freely explore and not break the bank doing it. So yeah, I'm right there with you by my last trip that was planned was going to be for Japan, before we get into this COVID. In that trip is dead. Terry is still there. So we're coming back for that. Don't worry. That's awesome. So let me ask you, man, how long have you been doing? What your what the round the 20 to 25? episode mark with your podcast is right. Yeah, we're getting. We're getting close to finishing season one. So we'll do 20 episodes in the season. Yeah. So I because podcasts are my world, what is the? How are you finding using a podcast? For something one, because you're navigating, you know, a pandemic that is disrupted travel. But, you know, travel is always, for me been part of the visual experience. So I love the intimacy of a podcast, I'm just curious, like, how do you you know, if you're like, hey, like, earlier, like, Hey, I'll send you pictures of you know, the coast. How do you balance? Or how do you balance the visual with the podcast, you know, I spent a lot of 2020 learning, you know, the video component actually, right, and the production from that perspective, and when I started the travel, business, you know, this lifestyle, it's, it was like a travel blog. And my thought was, I'm going to do, I'm traveling 40 weeks out of the year, I'm going all these amazing cities, and I'm just gonna, like start to documents, my interiors and things I like to do. And the first thing I always do is like, what is the best restaurant here? Like, what is this? And so I'm like, why don't I put that together? You know, still resources, and then, you know, design the website. And then a month later, we hit COVID. And what am I gonna write about it? I don't, I don't really know, here. And I wasn't going as many places on I spent about a year just going through my backlog of photos that I had, and using the kind of building the Instagram from that, and I'm just out of stuff. And I guess writing the blogs was getting hard because I wasn't like doing before, especially before moved out here. We were kind of doing anything. So you know, that's, that's, that's like, not as fun the writing part wasn't as fun for a while. And the video spot, you know, I love learning how to edit. But it was again, it wasn't going many places. So I was like this is feeling like a lot of work to do. And also you know, I just the things that were energizing me and motivating me was was talking about travel and, and that we're going to go and now this is this is definitely a passion for me. So I was thinking I can talk on a podcast forever about travel. So it's like even if it's like, I just think about it as two friends in a cafe talking about like, Hey, here's the places we're gonna go. And you know, I'm literally just like, as I'm listening to this thing, I'm pulling out my phone and I'm looking at like, Oh, yeah, we're gonna check this out and, and then you know, made a look of a blog on that thing we talked about later. But I think the medium of podcasting in just conversation is so casual and authentic. That it's that it's powerful enough to you know, overcome not having any of the visuals, right like I'm just driving around we were talking about we came back from Taco Bell overdrive two nights ago. I don't listen to music that long. I listen to music at work and on my desk, but like I used to, I love those drives to get some more experiences and just learn something from podcast and just hear stories now as Yeah, so Because that is Yeah, it's, that's that's the secret sauce. And you said it, it's authentic. And, you know, it's I asked that question because I kind of wanted to just hear what everything you just said, you know, but my sense is the visual is it's a nice to have, but when you when you can create a podcast around good conversations, you know, we're having a good early, but a good conversation today. And it's, and you know, and I applaud you. You know, there's so many different ways you can do podcast interviews, or as I like to, I don't like to use the word interview, I like to use our conversation. But you know, we just, you know, we talked, you know, a couple of weeks ago, just because we have a common interest with our marketing, but it's, um, you know, we just, we jumped on a zoom this morning had a conversation about travel and podcasts. And there's so much to to gain from the experience, as I like to sometimes refer to it as the ease dropping in on someone else's conversation. But I'm gonna remember kind of how you put it just two people in a cafe talking about travel. So it's like, yeah, that's, I get that. But you know, I love cafes. I love going to cafes. I didn't like it when I couldn't go to cafes, you know, but you know, so whether we're talking about travel or podcast, but yeah, that's, that is the that's the essence of it. Right there. you've nailed it, just sort of that, that telling stories here in great conversations. And, you know, three out of four people listen to podcast to learn something. And I think we learned, sometimes not through the intention of, Hey, I'm going to go learn this thing. It's Wow, I was listening to a podcast today. And I learned blank. I wasn't expecting to learn it. Right. Here I am. Well, it's so funny too. Because I remember when I was in, in Europe, just waking up in a hostel. So one of the cool things about hostels is you're just exposed to people you wouldn't naturally normally be. And you get these communal like breakfast spot. And I remember like hearing other people chat about this orange new day. And then I'm definitely that nosy neighbor uncomplete. Oh, what is that? Tell me more. And I feel like you can kind of get that feeling for a podcast. It's like, it's something you would do naturally. You just don't necessarily always observe how natural it is. Yeah, yeah. And it's, it's interesting, the work that I do, and working with entrepreneurs and coaches on their podcast is getting them out of their head space so that they can create conversations that are natural and authentic, just like we're having right now. So I'm looking at the time, man, I know you're running, you're running up on a on a needing to wrap this up. So yep. But you know, Michael, before before we do, I do want to ask you one quick question too. Sure. What's, what's something that, you know, I like to ask this one for all of my interviews to like, What's something that you might have learned? by traveling that you don't think you would have learned otherwise? Wow, there's so many? There's? That's a great question. I think the problem is, is that there's probably from my experiences, there's just so many answers to that question. You know, but I would, I would put it as the big answer for me was, when, you know, we made a decision as a family, my kids are 19 and 17. Right now, but we made a decision 10 years ago, to remove them from the public school system. and educate them through homeschooling, unschooling, and worldschooling. And worldschooling is just we're going to travel, and there are families that literally just travel, that's all they do. So we didn't do that, but we would travel, let's just say three to six months out of the year. And I think, you know, for for the experiences that I were, that I was able to have as a father with my children. That, you know, we were in the presence of fjords in Norway, or we were sitting on the steps of a cathedral, you know, in those places, the conversations we had would have never happened, if we were just looking at a book. And, you know, my son, my son is at now. So he struggled a little bit, and he was just like, I need to take a test, you know, what's what's happening in this world? We What do you mean, there's no tests? And, and the example I use them was exactly what I just said, was, you know, you could look at a fjord in a book, or you can know that you've now stood in the presence of some of the most beautiful fjords in the world, in Norway. And, and that was just a kind of moment for him where he was like, Oh, yeah, that's kind of cool, right. So I think for me, it's just been a it's been a some of the experiences that I've been able to have as a husband and as a father at very unique places around the world. That hopefully, you know, kids are still figuring it out, but hopefully had an impact on them as they as they then now venture into This world. I love that. And yeah, I think we talked, we talked about this, you know, earlier a couple weeks ago to where that experience you just can't replicate in a book. And it's great to hear it on a podcast, it's great to, you know, read it in a blog or kind of know that these things exist. But once you get there, and you feel it, it's it's different. It elevates it in it burns an impression on you as well. Yeah, I always love the idea when people try to take pictures on Instagram of the Grand Canyon. And almost every person says, oh, wow, this picture is not doing a justice. And having stood at the Grand Canyon, no, no picture will ever do that justice, no picture will ever do a justice of, of Big Sur of those types of things, you have to go and you have to experience it. And, and yeah, it's just, you know, getting goosebumps thinking about experiences, you know, just to different places. And some of these experiences bring you back to the beginning of our conversation. We're on RV trips around the United States, you know, our own backyard has so many amazing places, that that that conjure up those feelings and those experiences of just, you know, there's no other way to think about it than just being there. I love that. All right, Michael. So if the listeners want to hear more from you, how should they reach out? So I just have a page set up and I set it up specifically for your audience. If you go to your podcast, Coach comm forward slash guy, which I love the name of your business, by the way travel with guide, your name really is guy I love that is the best that is absolute best. I actually just told some buddy this the other day was like, get out of here. But yeah, so if you go to your podcast, Coach comm forward slash guy, what I give everybody is a free podcast roadmap. And this is something that after years and years and years of working with a variety of people, both from my former industry of radio, as well as entrepreneurs, and coaches. It's just all the questions that I've seen people ask at different stages in their journey. So it's like, here's where to begin, here's what to do next year's, it's truly a roadmap. And you can follow it all the way to, you know, 100 200 episodes on how to grow and monetize and things like that. It's free, you know, go and then once you're there, you can book a strategy call, and we can talk about starting a podcast. But if we do a podcast, you know, go back to something you said it's about authenticity. It's about intimacy. It's about storytelling. You know, generally, if an entrepreneur comes to me and says, Yeah, I just need to start a podcast and I want to check that box. I tell him to go watch YouTube videos, there's just it's podcasters such an important medium. And they're such a powerful medium, that when people are really, really interested in diving deep and making great conversations and having an impact. That's the kind of work that I do and the work that I love to do and the work that I get to do. And I'm fortunate to do with all the clients that I have. Yeah, and I seen that roadmap. I love the visual too, but so many things like oh, man I wish I had done before I started. So I mean, I get a lot a lot from that too. So I really recommend looking at if you're thinking about starting a podcast. Awesome, man. Well, thank you for the time, man. It's always good to hear always, always a fun thing to talk to talk travel. And you know, it's funny, just this conversation. I'm just like, I guess I really am itching to go somewhere to find a patient. I'm going to explore Mexico, but there will come a day where you know, for you, it's Japan. For me, it's getting back to Thailand. Michael, thank you. Thanks, guy. Hey, travelers, that's our show for this week. We really appreciate Michael coming onto the show and sharing what it's like in Mexico right now. Feel free to reach out to him and give him some love from the show. We'll link all of his info in the show notes below. And hey, do you have a question from today's episode, reach out, you can DM me at Instagram at travel with guy or on Twitter at travel with guy underscore. Thanks so much to everyone who's already subscribed to the show that really helps us grow and it only takes a second if you haven't already. Make sure you never miss episode by clicking that SUBSCRIBE button now. And also, if you could, if you have a couple of minutes, it would be awesome if you could just leave a review. It helps out with podcasts but it also gives me more motivation and inspiration as to what you want to hear on this show. We want to make this show for you. So that would be a huge help if you wouldn't mind. And if you'd like to read a transcript of this episode, you can find that in more on our website at travel with guide calm. Okay, I'm getting out of here until next week. Peace