In this episode, I have Paul Lam from the Path Hunters podcast on the show to talk about his first two weeks in Chiang Mai Thailand… The largest digital nomad hotspot in the world.
Paul is a fella I got to connect with inside a digital nomad community who turns out also lives in Toronto! However, he recently moved to Chiang Mai and when we recorded this episode he’d only been there for 2 weeks.
I thought it would be PERFECT to have Paul come on the show and have travel stories episode where we can talk about his experiences in Chiang Mai so far. I also talk about my experiences packing everything up and heading to another country as well.
I hope you enjoy this episode dudes and dudettes!
IN THIS EPISODE WE COVER:
- Moving to a new country
- Dealing with people who think you’re a nutjob!
- Paul’s first thoughts on Chiang Mai
- Plugging into a popular digital nomad community
LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED:
Wanna connect with Paul?
LT: So, Paul, thank you so much for coming on the show today and it’s a pleasure, man. We’ve been talking for a little bit now. We didn’t quite get the chance to meet up in Toronto before you ended up going to Chiang Mai, but it’s a pleasure to, like, see you face-to-face pretty much. It’s what digital nomads can call face-to-face at least anyway. You know, it’s great to be finally talking to you, man, rather than just over Facebook.
PL: Yeah. No, thank you so much for having me on the podcast, man. I appreciate you and, you know, the pleasure is all mine. You know, I’m glad we connected and, unfortunately, yeah, no, we couldn’t connect in Toronto. But don’t worry, there will be other times for us to connect as well too and get together.
LT: Definitely, man. So I did give you a bit of an introduction in the intro to the show, but would you like to sort of, like, introduce yourself to all the dudes and dudettes listening. You know, talk about who you are, sort of, like – I kind of gave away where you’re from. But sort of, like, what you do and sort of, like, a brief sort of, like, travel history and sort of, like, how you got to where you are right now.
PL: Yeah. So my name is Paul Lam. I’m the host of the Path Hunters podcast. The podcast itself is all about helping individuals that are frustrated, unfulfilled, to live a life of purpose and passion and just getting out there and just chasing, you know, the blessing to become Path Hunters. For me, a little bit about myself is that, you know, I’m the human experiment, the human guinea pig to my own podcast as well too, so I am actually that person that was working corporate nine to five grind, went through life exactly as, like, society had, you know, outlined for us all in life. You know, go to school, you know, get marks and then finish it up, get a job and climb the corporate ladder. And did that and suddenly, you know, I was like “There’s something missing here; I can’t do this and I’m not happy. I am not feeling fulfilled.” So, yeah. So that’s pretty much my whole entire journey on that created on the podcasts was an extension of that and, you know, so that’s pretty much the quick gist of myself and everything. So I’ve, you know, left my corporate nine to five now and as you know, as you said, you know, I’m in Chiang Mai and living it up, enjoying it here right now, so.
LT: Awesome, man. Yeah. So the reason I wanted you to come on to the show today is to be more of sort of, like, a travel episode rather than, like, a proper co-hosted episode where we talk about a topic because I’d love to sort of, like, talk about, like, your experiences and sort of, like, how you sort of, like, planned your move to Thailand and then also sort of, like, your first experiences being in Thailand. Because at the time of recording, you’ve been in Thailand for a little over two weeks. Is that right?
PL: Yeah, yeah. It’s so surreal, like I said. The planning for this – and why Chiang Mai, Thailand and the planning of it has to do with the fact that I’ve been doing a lot of podcasts surrounding digital nomads who are just recommending Chiang Mai as a place where you could actually be surrounded by other digital nomads because it’s the biggest hotspot there. And they’re all up to amazing stuff. And then – so the planning process was just basically understanding where I needed to go when I’m doing these interviews and so Chiang Mai was one places that was suggested. So I said, you know what, “I’m going to Chiang Mai.” And that was - - -
LT: Yeah. Because Chiang Mai is sort of, like, one of the – like, it is probably the number one spot of digital nomads, you know. If you’ve sort of, like, been listening to, like – well, you have, you know. You’ve been interviewing other digital nomads, but if you, like, listen to other digital nomads, you know, you’ll hear everybody talking about Chiang Mai. You know, that is, like, the place that everyone goes to. So what I’d love to know a little more information about is sort of, like – obviously you got a lot of information from the people you spoke to, but, like, did you do any research about Chiang Mai yourself as well?
PL: Yeah. So I had to research a lot about Chiang Mai; you know, what the people were like; the culture; the religion. I did a lot of research on living standard as well too. So how much was it going to, you know, cost me to live there every month. You know, what typically people spend their money on there specifically. So It was amazing because there was, like, an abundance of resources on this kind of topic and so it was very, very helpful and quite easy, actually, to plan out your escape plan to go to Chiang Mai. So did you want specific numbers and everything or?
LT: You don’t need to give specific numbers, but there are a couple of things that I wanted to ask you on, sort of, like, a couple of the bigger things that you sort of, like, need to think about when you’re sort of, like, planning a move. Like, one of them is sort of, like, visas. Obviously, you know, like, have you – are you just there on sort of, like, a tourist visa or did you look into, like, a few different other visa options? And t then also another one is about, like, apartments and stuff. So, you know, did you, like, book a place to stay long-term before you got there or did you do something that I prefer to do and, you know, book just, like, maybe a week at most somewhere and then sort of, like, find something once you’re on the ground.
PL: Yeah. So I actually took that route, actually. So whenever – so in going to Chiang Mai, I didn’t have a place to stay. I actually knew that I wanted to book a place like hostels for a week and then find a place by ground. So I did that. I actually found a place for about 200 Canadian dollars a month in this amazing place, but living in a hostel for the time being. It’s actually recommended to go that way anyways because you get to find some really sweet deals and you get to check out the place yourself. I recommend doing that because if you looking at it online and you're looking at the pictures, you don’t really get to see what is around in the surrounding area, right. You can actually get – move to a place that could be – it looks really nice in the inside, but you could be around, like, really, really – you know, in an awful neighbourhood.
LT: Yeah, that’s what I recommend sort of, like, everybody do, even if they’re not, like, planning on sort of, like, moving full-time to another country – well, you should never do that if you're moving full-time to another country. But, you know, if you are going to a place, you know, always, like, just book, like, a week in an Airbnb or in a hostel and then – yeah. Because, you know, looking at pictures and sort of, like, reviews, you know, you can’t really get a sense if this is a place that you want to spend three, six months, you know, just looking pictures online. So, yeah, you definitely need to sort of, like, check it out for yourself. And like you said, you can find a lot better deals once you're there too rather than just online.
PL: Exactly. And talking about the visas and everything like that. So I’m actually on a tourist visa where actually you can actually extend the visa here. So I went in the plan – originally the plan was getting a three-month visa. Whatever you're doing, get the visa in your local country first so that way when you go over there you don’t have to deal with getting a visa at the country itself because I heard it’s actually very difficult, but I’m not if that’s changed at all here. So I went on a 30-day tourist visa and I’m planning to extend it in another 30 days because I’m off to Vietnam shortly afterwards after knowing that. But if I was going to stay here for quite a while – for, you know, Canadians we have a six-month visa – it’s a multi-entry one. So that costs you around $200 Canadian. So it’s not too bad, and it’s well worth it because that way you're staying for six months.
LT: Is that what – like, a lot of the people that you’ve met, is that something that they’ve done?
PL: Yeah. So a lot of people here they’ve done that. You even get a chance to extend it 30 days as well too, so realistically you stay there for seven months and so. And, yeah, so you can do that. A lot of people are doing that here, but a lot of people try to avoid burning season here in Chiang Mai. That’s the biggest thing you have to look out. So the months of, I would say, March until April, you know, early May is burning season where they burn all the crops, and they actually – after the crops have been harvested, you know, they burn all the crops and everything. So the air and everything, it’s all, you know, within the air and everything. The mountains gets, you know, a little foggy and there’s all this pollution. I heard your eyes actually burn.
PL: If you have asthma – yeah. So if you have asthma, like, issues or problems or anything, it’s recommended not to be here in Chiang Mai. A lot of digital nomads tend to go to different countries for that time period so Bali, other countries close by, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and everything like that. Or if you’re staying here and you don’t want to leave, then stay inside. A lot of people say stay inside and try not to leave.
LT: Nice. So were they sort of, like, the main two things that you sort of, like, did research on? Like, jumping back to, like, the visas and accommodation, was there any sort of, like, other sort of, like, big things that you did a lot of research on before you made the move?
PL: Yeah. So the biggest thing for that, like, for, you know, places to stay. Join digital nomads groups that are here locally and ask them if there’s any deals or what they think about this place and everything. Look up reviews once you finally get here. Once you get here, you get to stay here – you get to, like, stay at a hostel and everything. You get to look for a place by ground. It’s very easy to get around now because they have Uber here now, so it wasn’t that difficult. So you can actually go down to, like, the most famous spots which is Nimman Road here. It’s a famous street where all the digital nomads hang out. So I knew I wanted to be around the area as well.
PL: And checking out different places. And sometimes there is awesome sublets through these Facebook groups, so I would recommend for you to sign up – sorry. Just join in this Facebook group because some digital nomads, they like to leave the countries and then you sublet it for a really cheap deal. You get it for, like, sometimes $200 Canadian as well too for a couple of months.
LT: Nice. Cool.
LT: So that was, like, the main things that you sort of, like, researched.
LT: So the next sort of thing I want to really talk about is sort of, like, your first few, like, days. I know you’ve only been there for two weeks so far, but I know, like, we were talking on Facebook and, you know, there was a lot of, like, overwhelming feelings that you were getting when you first got there.
LT: A lot of sort of, like – I remember talking to you, you know. You were like, “It’s so awesome,” and then you had sort of, like, these moments of like, “I don’t know if I can, like, cope with this,” and all that sort of stuff.
LT: You know, it was a rollercoaster of emotions when you got there. But could you just sort of, like, go through sort of, like, your first, like, few days and sort of, like, maybe even talk about sort of, like, how you, like, got into meeting a lot of these digital nomads because I know you did that, like, very early on.
LT: You know, you jumped into sort of, like, the digital nomad scene and, like, made the most of, like, networking. But then also talk about sort of, like, how you sort of, like, found, like, the place that you’re in right now, whether or not that was in the first few days or whatever. Yeah, just talk about sort of, like, your first few days and talk about sort of, like, the feelings that you felt and all that sort of stuff.
PL: Yeah. Like, there was, like, a mixed bag of emotions when I was here the first two or three days. I was really hyped up and ready to go and, again, I had moments where I, like, just doubted myself. I had to think to myself, like, “What am I doing here? Like, I don’t speak the language.”
LT: Yeah. Because this is, like, your first sort of, like, move, like, abroad, isn’t it?
PL: Yes. So initially I was quitting, you know, my nine to give job and just chose Chiang Mai, Thailand to go and build my business, my podcast and everything. So this happened actually four – no, five weeks ago now. So this happened five weeks ago, and I left that and came over here. And it was a mixed bag of emotions, I’m telling you. I was happy to be liberated from the corporate nine to five, but the other thing was that I’m going to a country that I’m uncomfortable with. I’m stretched, I’m feeling really, you know, lonely and, you know, sad and everything. It was very difficult to cope with all that because you're – I’ve never been in a hostel before; I didn’t know what to expect; I wasn’t too sure if all my things were going to get stolen or anything like that. So, like, it’s all these things, you know, your first time. And it’s scary, right? And I’m telling you the one thing that helped me a lot was joining into these nomad Facebook groups and then finding out where they’re having these events.
And one way or another, get to these events and network right away. You're right about me, networking right away, because I knew that’s the best thing that you can do when you come into a place like this and then you go out to these events. You talk to people as much as you can, connect with them and ask them, “Hey, what is the best place to live on Nimman Road?” or, “What’s the best place where all the digital nomads hang out?” And I got all these different places and I checked out every single one of them, and I found this really great place on – it’s called Banthai and you pay, like, $200 a month for this place. And I get a pool and a gym, so it’s great. But you just have to get out there. If you're already uncomfortable, you just get out there and you go and you network right away. So it was – I was on the ball with that and just meeting people. So once you meet more people, people invite you to more things and you have to be willing to go and then it just continues to grow from there. It’s like a ripple effect; it was really cool.
LT: Yeah, man. Because that’s something that I sort of, like, learned as well because, like, my first – Thailand was the first place I went to as well. I never came up to Chiang Mai. I did, like, Bangkok and sort of, like, did some of, like, the Islands. It was definitely more of, like, a break for me; not really worked on my business, which is something that I want to talk about in a minute or later on, a bit more, like, the work/life balance sort of thing because that was something that I definitely made a big mistake of. You know, I had my online business going and I went to Thailand for a month and just turned into an alcoholic, partying every single day. But, yeah, I did absolutely love Thailand. And sort of, like, my first few steps when I got to a new place – you know, I definitely, like, feel you when you talk about, like, the loneliness. But when you do throw yourself into those sort of, like, social situations, like chatting with nomads and, you know – the kind of people that stay in hostels are really open to, like, strangers coming up and talking to you.
And, like, when I first got to Australia, like, I had two nights’ worth of accommodation booked when I got there, and I made, like, so many friends, like, just in those two days in the hostel that, like, we went out and rented boats on a lake and we spent, like, nine hours on a boat, on, like, the Cairns River – I think that’s what it’s called. There’s a big river in Cairns, anyway. But, like, we rented a boat and went fishing and had, like, a barbeque on the boat as well. So, like, with just some random people that I met in a hostel and then, like, within less than a week later I was travelling with two of them down the east coast for three weeks. So, you know, especially digital nomads and, like, travellers in general, you know, they are extremely open to, like, a stranger coming up and just joining in on a conversation and sort of, like, participating in sort of, like, activities that, like, they’ve got planned already. So you will feel lonely at first, but like you said just throw yourself into those, like, social situations and the loneliness will quickly disappear.
PL: It’s so true because, like, you know what, like I said, this is the first time I’ve actually thrown myself into this kind of environment, thrown myself into a hostel and it turns out everybody in the hostel is nice. They’re travelling to different places, and if you are going down to the same place you can go together; you can connect with people. My perception has changed now. So at first I was just like, “Oh my god. Like, is this – am I going to be okay? What’s going to happen?” and just, like, all these risky scenarios, like, going through my head. But it’s actually not that bad. So, you know, you learn a lot. You know, I recommend going to hostels, if you guys – all you listeners are just, you know, wondering, you know, why I chose to go and be in hostels, because I knew you can connect with people as well too. So, yeah, it’s a huge learning curve, but it’s something I didn’t know until finally I got to Chiang Mai and I got to experience it myself as well. I noticed that digital nomads and backpackers and everyone are very nice and very open. They’re willing to take you in. They’re so kind; the kindest people I’ve met so far.
LT: Yeah. And especially, like, the digital nomad scene as well. You know, everybody there has, like, travelled by themselves at some point and, you know, have been in a place where they’re lonely and, you know, they know that you’re, like, trying to build a business. So these are sort of, like, the perfect people to, you know, try and, you know, socialise with because they’re going to give you, like, all the details that you need to help, like, do what you’re trying to do and, like, the reason why you went to – well, your personal reason why you went to Chiang Mai is because you want to build your podcast and, like, start building your business, which is the main thing a lot of other, like, digital nomads go to Chiang Mai for. They go there to work on their business full-time because Chiang Mai is a lot cheaper, you know. The living expenses there are a lot less than what they are in, say, like, Canada where you’re from or England where I’m from or America where, like, the majority of the listeners are probably going to be from. So, yeah, definitely, like, dive right into that for sure. So the other thing I also wanted to talk about is, like, I haven’t been in Chiang Mai myself and, you know, we’ve already said, like, Chiang Mai is sort of, like, the popular sort of, like, spot for digital nomads. Could you just talk about sort of, like, how, like, the digital nomad scene there compares to, like, what you might have read or heard or, like, seen in, like, Facebook groups.
PL: Yeah. So what I’ve read and seen and everything in there, you know, you can only get an idea if you’re not here yet. So everybody, even on the Facebook groups, they’re very nice. They will answer as much questions as they want, but the responses are not as quick because they’re all up to something. So by the time I got here and I realised that everybody is doing something. Everyone. Like, it’s Christmas back home and all my friends have already checked out; you know, it’s holidays. You know, I’m going to take a break; I want to spend time with mum and dad and stuff, but everybody here is like, “No, I’m still going to be grinding and I’m still going to be at this co-working space,” and they’re going to be continuing their work. So there were those two perceptions that were quite different. I found I had – I didn’t really know what to expect what digital nomads were like as behavioural wise, like, you know, what kind of behaviours they would demonstrate and everything. So by the time I got here, it’s just completely blown me away than what you read online because, you know, they’re very nice, they’re very open, I guess. Again, they understand because – I think the reason – the biggest key thing is that they understand what you’ve been through, you know, how hard it took to take this leap of faith, right, to jump into a new world.
LT: Yeah. Especially if it’s, like, your first time as well.
PL: Yeah. So they get so inspired. Like, if everybody – I tell everybody, like, you know what, five weeks ago I used to be that poster boy, corporate nine to five suit guy and they’re like, “Oh my god. Like, how was it? Like, do you feel – like, come here. Like, sit down. Let’s eat and, like, do you want to go eat some khao soi and some pad Thai?” And I was like, “Yes, I am down. Let’s go.” So that’s where it’s at.
LT: Awesome. So it’s definitely sort of, like, gone past sort of, like, your expectations and what, like, the digital nomad scene is like over there.
PL: Definitely. Like, it’s blown me away. I got invited to one event. What happened was one event, I networked with more people and then I got invited to, like, you know, five more the next day and then I got invited to, like, 10 more the next day. I got to the point where I went a full day, went to, like, five events. And I was like, “I’m so tired.”
LT: So the networking there can be a little bit too much sometimes.
PL: A little bit, a little bit. But it’s fun, though. It’s all good.
LT: Awesome. So, yeah, the other thing I sort of, like, wanted to talk about as well, which is something that I know you’re struggling with now because you mentioned it before we started recording, and it was something that, like, I struggled with a lot and I know a lot of other people are going to as well, and that is dealing with, you know, the work/life balance. You know, we’ve all gone – well, yourself, you’ve gone to Chiang Mai and I’ve gone to other countries where I know I need to be working on my business because the business is what’s going to be supporting the lifestyle that I want and, like, your business is, like, supporting you living in Thailand. You know, my business is supporting me living in Canada right now, but, you know, there’s so many cool things that we can do in these places. Like, I’m not exactly sure what sort of things that you can do in Chiang Mai, but it’s clear that, like, one of the distractions is all these networking events if you can spend an entire day going from one event to other. But like myself, when I was in Thailand the first time, like, the big distraction for me was a lot of partying. I did – it was probably a mistake.
I went on sort of, like, a party group tour. You know, that was the idea of this group was to go around partying from place to place. So that was, like, the big mistake that I did make, but I don’t regret it whatsoever because it’s led to all this that I’m doing right now. And then, like, when I got to Australia there was a lot of, like, travelling in the three weeks where I travelled down the east coast. You know, we did, like, activities in, like, every place that we went to and, you know, there wasn’t really time to work on the business if that’s what you needed to do to support that lifestyle. So the question that I have is sort of, like, how are you finding, like, the work/life balance now that you’re, like, in Chiang Mai and you don’t have a nine to five that you have to sort of, like, slave away in, like, behind the desk like you mentioned, but, you know, with all these other distractions that are available now. So, like, how are you sort of, like, dealing with the work/life balance or, like, not dealing with it very well and, like, the sort of things that you're, like, slowly learning about yourself and, like, how you can deal with it.
PL: Yeah. So it’s actually, yeah, something we talked about a little bit earlier. So it’s hard. It’s hard when you're in a place like this, because in Canada it’s freezing cold, there’s snow and I’m literally in a T-shirt right now and shorts and here enjoying this tropical weather, and it’s kind of hard not to want to get out and just see the sights and everything like that. We have mountains here, so there’s a temple on the mountain and I definitely didn’t get a chance to check that out, but it’s simply one of those things on my list. I struggled at it for, like – I still struggle with it now, but it’s gotten better. The first week I was just, like, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t do it, I couldn’t work. You know, I couldn’t find a nice spot to just sit down and do my work because, like, there was so much stuff to do. And so now it’s gotten a little bit better and I realise that it’s all on how you spend your time. So if you are a morning person, wake up a little earlier and get your work done because over back home it’s probably what, like, I don’t know, like, 9 pm or something like that right now.
LT: Well, for me here it’s – well, here in Toronto right now its 10.50 pm.
PL: 10.50, oh my gosh. So utilise on the time and everything. So just waking up early, and they have a 24-hour co-working space here and get your work done and then enjoy the rest of your day. So you kind of have to, like, learn how to manage your time properly. I’ve allocated days now where, let’s just say, on Fridays I specifically go out and film and record content and just see some friends and everything. And then Mondays I would, you know, work on other projects, like podcasting and everything, and then work on my book and everything. So it’s just allocating your time properly, but I’ve gotten a little bit better about that but it’s kind of again not – it’s kind of hard to do because everything is so cheap here, everything is so good and you always bump into your friends and they just want to hang out with you and everything, and I just can’t help but just go.
LT: Yeah. That’s definitely something that I had to learn as well, and it’s something that, like, a few of the other people that I’ve had on the show have spoken about too is, like, allocating your time. Like, I was chatting to – I think it was Madison Black who’s down in Mexico right now, and she talks about – was it with Madison? It could’ve been Leah. Anyway, I was talking to someone and they were saying that they sort of, like, split their – they spend, like, three weeks of the month just head down, focused on work, and then they spend a week travelling. So you can either, like, break up, like, your month like that or do what it sounds like you’re doing and sort of, like, breaking your week up. So, like, there’s certain days that you focus on work and try not to let anything else distract you so you can, you know, do the things that you need to do in your business to keep you in Chiang Mai, and give you yourself a day, two days, three days, whatever it is that you want to split it up, you know, so you can go and play and enjoy the place that you’re in.
And that was something I had to learn the hard way, and it sounds like you’re, like, learning the hard way. And it’s still something – you know, I’ve been travelling for four years now and it’s still something that I struggle with, especially, like, last winter when I was living in a ski resort. You know, I had, like, a pass and I just wanted to go out and snowboard every single day, but I couldn’t because I had to, like, do stuff for the business. And, you know, it is really tough when you’ve got like – especially for yourself like you said, you know. Everything in Chiang Mai is so cheap in comparison that you just want to go out and do it all, but you need to be strict with yourself and, you know, spend the time on your business that’s going to keep you there so you can continue doing that.
PL: It’s so true and I get you 100 per cent on that because all you really want to do is you just want to have fun, and you’ve just got to do the work. So I love the adage that’s like work hard, play hard now.
PL: And so it’s been very, very interesting. You learn a lot about yourself and how much you operate as well too. So it turns out, like, I operate really well, I get a lot of work done in the morning. I used to think before I used to be a night time; it’s not the case.
LT: Sweet, man. Dude, it sounds like you’re having a whale of a time in Chiang Mai and I can’t wait to get there myself. Hopefully, like, when I do eventually get there at whatever point, you’ll be there too and you can sort of, like, be my tour guide once we get around there – once I get there.
PL: Most definitely. Most definitely.
LT: So before we wrap this up, I do have two more questions to ask you. And the first one is sort of, like, how would you sort of, like, sum up your, like, first two weeks being in Thailand? Like, maybe sort of, like, what you anticipated it would be like to, like, what it has actually been like.
PL: Yeah. So, you know, Chiang Mai, in the beginning before I went, I just thought to myself, like, “Oh my god. Like, this is going to be a weird place to be. You know, it’s going to be so different because of the culture and the people, but the cool thing is going to be digital nomads.” I had this really high expectation for the digital nomad community, and I wasn’t too sure because I’m from Vietnam. And so in Vietnam, like, there’s a lot of chaos and a lot of motorbikes and everything; a lot of all that. And then by the time I got there, it blew me away and the expectation was actually a lot different than I expected. You know, the nomad community completely blew me away. I really enjoyed that. I really like all the people I connected with. And there’s actually not a lot of chaos here than I thought, compared to Vietnam. I think Vietnam is actually really more chaotic than here; here is a little bit more, I guess, civilised. So that was my perception between the two. Food here is really good. Like, I never knew what Thai food really was until I started eating more khao soi. I only knew pad Thai, but there’s other amazing dishes here. It’s very easy if you’re vegan or vegetarian; you can find really healthy food here. It’s really good.
LT: The pad Thai in Thailand doesn’t even compare to, like, the pad Thai you get, like, here in Canada, is it? It’s on a different level.
PL: Not even close.
PL: Different level here.
LT: Yeah. And then the fact that you can get it for, like, 50 baht on the street as well. It’s ridiculous.
PL: Yeah, that works out to be, like, a dollar or something like that.
PL: $2 or something like that, yeah.
LT: It’s crazy. And then, like, the final question is sort of, like, what tips would you give to people that are sort of, like, wanting to come to Thailand and, you know, they’re maybe starting to, like, plan their trip or maybe they’ve just got there. What’s sort of, like, a few tips that you would give people to really, like, make the most of their first, like, two weeks in Thailand?
PL: Just be open. Be open and just adapt, because things are going to come up. Things will definitely – you know, things will just come out. Like, for me, like, I didn’t know – I didn’t call my visa card company. You know, call your visa card company. I think you guys need to do that. All right. Before you leave. I didn’t do that and my credit card company thought I was actually trying to fraudulently steal money from Thailand or something. So make sure you do that because – yeah. So things will come up and just stay calm and just adapt, and that’s my only advice for everyone who’s willing to just jump out, you know, kudos to every single one of you for being so brave and getting out there.
LT: Yeah, kudos to you too, man. You know, I know the fear and the anticipation and the anxiety that you feel when, you know, you’ve been planning this, like, big life-changing trip and, you know, the nerves that you must have felt when you were, like, waiting to board the plane and, you know – and, yeah, man. Just a huge congratulations for you for, like, finally taking the digital nomad – like, going on this journey and finally becoming a digital nomad and, you know, living the dream that a lot of people, you know, aspire to, like, live themselves. So, yeah, huge congratulations to you too, man.
PL: Thank you so much. I honestly honour that. Thank you so much for just letting me know that, and I appreciate it. It means a lot coming from you.
LT: Sweet. And so before we go, we do have one thing to do and that is the rapid-fire question session. Are you ready for this, Paul?
PL: Oh yeah, I’m fired up.
LT: Cool. So I want the first answer that comes to your head, and then I’m just going to quickly ask the next question afterwards. So question number one.
LT: What is your favourite country that you’ve been to so far?
LT: What is the last YouTube video or movie that you’ve watched?
PL: Gary Vaynerchuk, one of his vlogs with – yeah, all his vlogs are good. But, yeah, it was a Gary Vaynerchuk video that I saw recently on YouTube.
LT: What is the weirdest thing that you’ve eaten?
PL: Khao soi.
LT: What is your favourite drinking game?
PL: Man, I don’t even drink. Favourite drinking game? You know, just – they have, like, the little roulette. You can buy little roulette things or the little shots.
PL: So, like, you get to spin it and you land on the colour and you take it and you drink it. Yeah. So the little roulette thing.
LT: Sweet. If you could meet one person, living or dead, who would it be?
PL: Bruce Lee.
LT: Good choice. Name one book you would recommend everybody should read.
PL: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.
LT: What is your go-to song when you need to get into the mood to get shit done?
PL: Let me see. Oh man. Oh man, that’s a good one. Let me see. Eye of the Tiger. Eye of the Tiger. Yeah, yeah.
LT: That’s a good one.
PL: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
LT: And what is your favourite swearword that you’ve learnt in another language?
PL: Oh man. Do you want me to say the swearword?
LT: Yeah, go ahead.
LT: We’ve got to say this in the podcast.
PL: Okay, okay, okay. So in Chinese culture – so in Chinese Mandarin, “cao”. “Cao” means, like, “fuck”. So “cao”.
PL: “Cao”. Yeah. So c-a-o. So “cao”.
PL: So yeah.
LT: I think the only – well, I worked with a few, like, people from China and Taiwan when I was in Australia.
LT: And I learnt – how was it said? I think it’s “sie yen”. Is it “sie yen”? It’s either “ba po” or “sie yen”. One of the two, it basically means “bitch”.
PL: Oh really?
LT: And “pam sie yen” is “fat bitch”.
PL: Yeah. So how they – oh my gosh. How they say it in this one is like “cao mee ma” so it was like “fuck your mum”. It’s like “motherfucker” kind of deal. So I was like, “What? What? Why are you saying that?” But, yeah, it’s hilarious. It’s funny.
LT: I like it. What is your favourite podcast apart from this one?
PL: Man. School of Greatness with Lewis Howes.
LT: And, finally, can you give me your best travel story that you have in under five minutes.
PL: Yeah. No, my favourite travel story has got to be exploring the Great Wall of China. That happened in 2010. I went for a two-week vacation I went out there, and as I was walking on, you know, the Great Wall of China, I went so far that there was, like, no tourists around, nobody around and I had to soak in the moment. Like, you know, men and women were sitting here in this exact same spot 5000 years ago. That’s truly transformational. And just standing, exploring different parts of China was just so moving. So, yeah, that was my favourite travel story. I would tell anybody that if you guys have a chance to go to check out the Great Wall of China, it’s intense. You're just, like, looking at it and it boggles your mind how these guys built it.
LT: Do they do sort of, like – you can some, like, cycling trip or something on the Great Wall?
PL: Oh really, they have that? I wasn’t too sure.
LT: I’m pretty sure I’ve, like, read somewhere that - obviously the wall is so big that, you know, there’s sort of, like, one part of it that’s, like, really popular for, like, tourists.
LT: So, you know, you go there and it’s surrounded by people and, you know, it’s hard to, like, move around. But there’s, like, other parts of the Great Wall where there’s no one for miles. And I’ve read somewhere that you can, like, cycle on the Great Wall of China and you can, like, do – I don’t know how far it is, but there’s definitely somewhere that you can do that.
PL: That’s crazy. I know that you can actually go and take a quick little, like – what is that? Like, they have these in Canada where you just get – if you're on the Great Wall and then you can take a little, like, I guess, toboggan or something and you go all the way down the hill and they just lead you into this weird forest all the way down to the bottom of the Great Wall. It’s this huge mountain, right, so they have this little ride; it’s kind of like a rollercoaster, I guess, but it’s pretty - - -
LT: Did you do it?
PL: No, no, no. Hey just made this recently.
PL: I saw a video about that. Yeah, yeah.
LT: Sweet. Cool, man. Again, thank you so much again for coming on this show. It’s been amazing to finally talk to you and, you know, when you do – if you do – you know, you might decide that you love Chiang Mai so much you won’t come back to Toronto. But, you know, next time you are in Toronto and I’m still here, we will definitely have to go out and, like, grab a drink.
PL: Heck yeah, man. You know it. So, yeah, I appreciate you. Thank you so much for just having me on. I’m happy to be on here and just providing value and everything to your audience, man.
LT: You’re more than welcome, man. So where can people find you online if they wanted to reach out to you?
PL: Yeah. So you guys can find me at pathhunters.com, and I have all my social media handles on there. If you guys want to email, so it’s email@example.com. You know, I respond very quickly actually and you can find me also on Instagram as well too, Path Hunters, and check that out as well too.
LT: Sweet. So I’ll put all the links to those into the show notes for today. So if you didn’t manage to grab any of that off of Paul, then you can just go to the show notes page and they will all be listed there. So, again, Paul, thank you so much for coming on and we will definitely, definitely chat soon and hopefully grab a drink soon.
PL: Sounds good. I appreciate it. Thank you so much.
LT: Sweet. Take care, man. Throw a fist bump.
PL: Take care. Bam.
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