Josh Guerrero is an archeologist, philanthropist, veteran of the Marine Corps and Peace Corps, and versatile traveler and adventurer intent on making the most of his time on this wonderful planet. A two week study abroad in Japan as a young student ignited Josh’s love of international travel and a desire to see much more of the world. Since then he’s done two stints as an expatriate – in The Gambia, West Africa for two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer, and one year in England as a graduate student.
“I suddenly thought to myself – how can I get more of this? That’s 1 country out of 193 other countries in the world. There’s so much else out there for me to see!”
– Josh Guerrero
Josh joins the show to share some of his greatest travel moments, meals, inspirations, lessons, and failures. He also reveals the details of his next great adventure and fund-raising effort to empower veterans with a new team and mission.
“Getting out of your comfort zone. We’ve heard that a million times for good reason because there’s so much value. Long term, what am I going to look back on my life and be more happy that I have done? It’s going to be the uncomfortable things. Not the times where I decided to play it safe and let opportunities pass me by.”
– Josh Guerrero
Josh ranks travel memories and stories as more meaningful than any material possession and has racked up some great adventures so far – shipwreck diving in Lake Superior, cycling 300 miles across The Gambia, floating on top of the salty water of the Dead Sea, and riding camels in the Sahara desert, just to name a few. Oh, and quite a few unique travel meals were had too!
All of these stories and more are shared regularly through Josh’s All Around Adventure podcast where he shares adventures and misadventure to inspire travel, life abroad, and provide tips and ideas to help make your future travels safer and less stressful.
- Catching the travel bug
- How international travel enriches us
- Overcoming common fears of adventure
- Failure and the unexpected as part of the fun
- Next adventure benefitting vets
- All Around Adventure mission
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Josh [00:00:00] Getting out of your comfort zone, you know, we've heard that a million times and for good reason to because there is so much value when you actually do decide to get out of your comfort zone. And again, I just think like I said, I kind of think long term here. Is that what am I going to look back on my life and be more happy that I have done. It's going to be the uncomfortable things not the times where I decided to play it safe and I just let all these opportunities Pass Me By
Michael [00:00:36] Man of Mastery episode 40 hard to believe it's 40 episodes already barreling in on a year and I'm convinced that The Best Is Yet To Come having a blast and I just want to say again how much I really appreciate you and thank you for being here. Today I have what I call the real life.
Michael [00:00:57] Indiana Jones He is archaeologist Josh Guerrero who joins us to talk about his passion for international travel and his stories that he shares on his all-around Adventures podcast. Where as he likes to say, he shares amazing tales From Afar and the all important life lessons that go along with international travel.
Michael [00:01:21] This should be a little interesting tonight to test out this directional microphone. I have my neighbor is getting into it pretty good with some music. So if you hear that Rockin or you hear my dog, well as my friend Ben keloid likes to say life happens during podcasts. Now as you probably know this podcast drops weekly on Thursdays, but this week I put out the social media advertisements for episode 40 with a note that this week.
Michael [00:01:51] Going to drop Sunday through the reason for the delay is to time the episode release with Josh and his big announcement on what he calls his mission dual Trek. So this week in episode 40 we talk about dual track the what it benefits the mission that he is on and the adventure that he is undertaking.
Michael [00:02:13] So before we jump into anything in terms of the episode content or the episode itself. I just want to point you directly to To the website to find out more so you can hit my Link at man of Master. E.com / 0 4 0 4 episode 40 man of Mastery.com / 0 for T and that will get you links to the Dual track adventure the description of what he's heading off to do and this is a this is a philanthropic benefit that he's got going as part of his Adventure.
Michael [00:02:48] So he is completely self funding the adventure. And there's also a GoFundMe link there which has nothing to do with the cost of his trip. He self-funding the trip to raise awareness for the cause still described on the episode today and the GoFundMe goes 100% to the cause so man of Mastery.com 0:40 where you will find links to operation dual track and the GoFundMe that goes 100% to the veteran cause Josh just supporting so in terms of today's episode and maybe summary or top three that come out of this operation dual track is absolutely number one.
Michael [00:03:31] Again. Josh is endeavoring on a cause to help wounded and other veterans. I'll let him describe It Best in his own words, but it needs our support. I'm in I think I may be one of the first donations to hit the page since I got an early glimpse of it. And if you hear what you like feel free to reach out to Joe.
Michael [00:03:51] Ask more or jump on in and help the cause as well. A couple other things from tonight's episode. So one is just international travel and how it grows. Uh, so in line with the theme of growth through sometimes harder uncomfortable things getting out of our comfort zone. If you've done much in terms of international travel and especially if you've done it kind of down and dirty, you know that it grows you and it enriches you in so many ways as an adult.
Michael [00:04:24] I mean, I would definitely encourage it for children as children. Drink grow into adults. It just adds so much perspective on life. I find and and particularly on happiness which Josh talks about today in our episode and about his time in The Gambia in Africa. And then a third hey, you know if you if you ever want to make sure that when you've been invited for dinner and you want to keep an eye out and try to avoid eating sheeps testicles or goats testicles.
Michael [00:04:59] Well Josh gives us a bit of a bit of a story about that today as well. Maybe we can learn from his experience in just being generous and saying yes, and maybe that's the right way to go as a guest at dinner or we can learn from Josh on maybe how to kind of question what's in that beautiful bowl of meat that that's getting served up at dinner sometimes so goats goats balls.
Michael [00:05:25] Yeah. That's that's number three on today's episode and so on that pleasant note, let's just get right in and get after it with Josh Guerrero. Josh Guerrero is an archaeologist philanthropist veteran of the Marine Corps and Peace Corps a versatile travel or an adventurer and tent on as he says making the most of his time on this wonderful Planet a two-week study abroad in Japan as a young student ignited Josh's love of international travel and a desire to see much much more of the world since then as he'll tell us he's done two stints as an expatriate in The Gambia West Africa for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer.
Michael [00:06:05] The even a year in England as a grad student Josh is also the Creator and host of the all-around Adventure travel blog and podcast where he shares amazing tales From Afar and the all important life lessons that go along with them. So Josh welcome to the show.
Josh [00:06:22] Hey, thanks a lot Michael. I'm looking forward to our conversation today and since a little bit of deja vu because I think we just did this last week, didn't we you were joining me for the all-around Adventure podcast. So so I guess if Listeners enjoy what they here today. Go check out that episode where Michael joins me on my show. I think they'll enjoy to
Michael [00:06:41] yeah, we definitely share that passion for international travel and I think the importance and the understanding of how it enriches our lives and helps us grow. So I was honored to be on your podcast. It's always interesting with this format. We recorded that one a week or so ago. We'll see which one errors first. So the timing thing is is always kind of crazy, but let's Jump Right In and and talk about how you Initially caught that travel bug.
Michael [00:07:06] I know you grew up in the Detroit area and there's Canada right across the river but I think the first time you really want abroad was as I mentioned to Japan, is that right?
Josh [00:07:16] Yeah, that's correct. And seeing that I'm only from Michigan. I don't really count candidate as an international travel experience, you know, just a quick drive right across the bridge and you're there but yes, I was an undergrad in college when I decided to do this study abroad to Japan. It was for a sociology credit. That I didn't actually really need I just really wanted to go to Japan and I linked up with the professor.
Josh [00:07:41] He was actually doing this trip for the first time. So I was going to be part of is beta test group if you will and I've always been fascinated by the country. You know, I kind of grew up watching anime. I was a big fan of Dragon Ball Z and all those like Toonami shows on Cartoon Network when I was growing up as a kid and to some degree. I still kind of a mime a little bit of a cute that way so so and also, I must I'm a martial artist so Learning a little bit about the samurai in the Ninja and here in a little bit of the history of the country as well really intrigued me.
Josh [00:08:14] So I knew I had a capitalize on this opportunity and I just had an absolutely amazing time is just the culture for one was absolutely amazing. Yo, Japanese are very friendly people very polite you go to some a store purchase some things as you're leaving the cashier will bow to you and you'll return that in kind as well.
Josh [00:08:37] Everyone's Needed you with a smile. It was really amazing and just seeing how beautiful the country was and you're looking at these buildings that are centuries old and still in very pristine condition and also the food my gosh Michael if the food was just out of this world. It was so good everywhere you went and I remember going to a Kaiten Sushi, which of anyone's ever been to a Kaiten Sushi before if you love sushi you'd love one of these places.
Josh [00:09:03] It's there's like a conveyor belt that goes through the entire restaurant with plates a sushi. Just grab something you like you they count the place that you stack and then that's how they'll charge you at the end. So it's kind of like an all-you-can-eat buffet but not at a fixed price. You will get charged for what you
Michael [00:09:20] eat. And I never knew it had a name. That's one of my son's favorite things. We did it for the first time in Australia. He loves the the conveyor belt Sushi.
Josh [00:09:28] Yeah. It was that was definitely the first time I've had that experience and it and I went on a rampage. Let me tell you I wrote a blog post about that. So I'm sure someone can find that later. After they're done listening to this but really just having that experience and also I was kind of a late bloomer when it came to international travel when I took this trip to Japan.
Josh [00:09:48] I was 25 years old and it kind of made me think to myself man have I really been missing out on all of this like this whole time and so returning from that trip. I thought to myself well, how can I get more of this? I mean, that's one country out of a hundred ninety three countries in the world that You know, there's so much else still out there for me to see so one thing led to another and we'll kind of cut a long story short here, but following the time I had graduated from college and after Japan quick
Michael [00:10:20] quick Interruption Josh. So let me ask you something about Japan because so I know we're going to get some more food stores you and I both love food and traveling and food go hand in hand, but and I haven't had the pleasure of Japan yet myself either, but I was talking to a buddy about it recently and you know on this show we talk a lot about Mindset right part of that sometimes is about quieting the mind and being present, you know being present in whatever task you may be doing.
Michael [00:10:47] You know, sometimes I talk to my son about his Focus as he's brushing his teeth, you know, or it could be something much more complex trait and the buddy I was just talking to you about Japan was talking about that was the one thing that surprised him was that presents with which everybody went about their task whether it was just remembering example, he gave if you're walking you're walking, you know, if you stop at a Ending machine for a bottle of water you stand there and enjoy your bottle of water.
Michael [00:11:11] You don't walk and drink your water at the same time. There's just an intense Focus to the quality of everything. They do is my impression.
Josh [00:11:20] Yeah that I definitely noticed that as well and I wouldn't say it's necessarily taboo per se but if you were to go in there as a foreigner or a guy gin and you were to like walk and eat at the same time, you'll probably get some strange looks as well. Like they probably won't like insult you for it or anything like that, but Just not something that's really done there. Like you said, it's just and I also kind of felt like whatever it is that they're pursuing.
Josh [00:11:45] Yes. They do have that intentionality behind it is if they're seeking like Perfection what it is that they're doing and to some degree. It's considered an honor to be able to do the things that they do. Let's talk about the service industry for instance in a restaurant you don't tip and to them. It's an honor to be able to provide you with that service of being you know, your waiter your host your Otis so yes, a lot of focus indeed and that was certainly something that I really kind of appreciate it and it kind of created I guess I'll say a chill atmosphere because I just felt really at ease everywhere.
Josh [00:12:23] I went in that country. I went to seven different cities during the two weeks that I was there and not typically here in the states. I feel like my guard is up a little bit more in American cities like a especially being in Michigan and growing up near Detroit and things like that. But there is just I wasn't I wouldn't say I was totally Carefree but I felt like I could kind of like well, let my guard down just a little bit.
Josh [00:12:46] It was just an interesting Vibe about the place
Michael [00:12:49] that's really interesting and intentionality sounds like a really good word for it and you know along with mindset. I think one of the things I think about is productivity whether it's my work life my personal life finding time for all the things we want to do and I think the this idea we had for a while an American culture of multitasking has really been spelled and intentionality is a great way to think about it.
Michael [00:13:11] So I love that.
Josh [00:13:13] Yeah, I wouldn't say I'd say that multitasking is a myth your only shifting your focus. Like if you are like let's say texting and driving if you're going down and you're texting you shifted your focus away from the road where it should be to what it is that you're trying to type or what it is that you're trying to read. So you can't really multitask you just shift your focus and and I think in this day and age it's kind of little Difficult to do that is now because I say we have a lot of clutter in our lives, you know, not only with just what we have to do on the regular like you're you know, you're a father you got your fatherly duties.
Josh [00:13:48] You got your duties as a husband. You got your brand that you're trying to build and and in my case, you know, I also have a full-time job as an archaeologist that I do and we continue to add a lot of clutter in our life with this now. I'm home hold those up as if like the listeners can see what I'm doing, but I'm holding up my smartphone like this is you know, it could be a very powerful. Powerful tool you and I got connected this way, but it could also be the devil and you know in there's a lot of things that could lead to a downward spiral in our lives with this thing to so you can build it.
Josh [00:14:19] You can build an Empire with this thing or you can let it drive you into deep despair, you know, it's kind of up to you how you do that. So going back to what we talked about intentionality is being intentional with what we let into our lives and also up here into our brains as well. So for sure,
Michael [00:14:34] yeah well said well I shifted your gears back. To back to Japan. I think you were going to segue into coming back from Japan and and the bugged at that left you with and how you pursued it next.
Josh [00:14:46] Yeah, because when I got back from Japan, I was maybe about a semester away from graduating and I was actually an elementary education major at believe it or not. And by the time I had graduated the education system in Michigan was just in really really bad shape. They were closing down schools.
Josh [00:15:08] And they were letting go of teachers left and right so they had a lot more licensed teachers in the state and they had jobs for everybody. So at that point I kind of had to make a decision. I was thinking to myself. Well, what am I supposed to do now? I mean if I can't find a job am I just going to be unemployed with you know, just not having anything to do so cutting a long story short yet again because I could talk about this for a good while but I decided to choose.
Josh [00:15:38] Use Peace Corps because Peace Corps actually has education sectors in different countries around the world and something and well, I just so happened to now have skills in that. So so I applied and I received an invitation letter to The Gambia and looking at that. I looking at that letter and I don't know if I'm allowed to swear on this pod go for it.
Josh [00:16:02] But I said where the fuck is the game because I had never heard of the country. Before so I went on so I went online went to the good old Google and I typed it and turns out it's the smallest country on the entire African continent. It's maybe about half the size of New Jersey so pretty tiny country and and I thought to myself do I really want to go there of all places.
Josh [00:16:27] I mean, I never even heard of it. I don't even know like what's there and but the thing was is that I felt like I had to capitalize on the opportunity because the way that Peace Corps inviting To go was very formal. They fedexed me this like big giant blue envelope with an actual typed out letter and everything with all the details and all kinds of other like supporting documents.
Josh [00:16:51] So I'm thinking to myself. Okay, if I turn this down, I don't think they're to go through the trouble to send me another fancy schmancy, you know, I love a love like this again. And I knew I was committed to go in and of course I had this adventurous spirit that I just called to vated from Japan. So I took a may be pondered on it for a day and then I emailed them in the you know instructions that they based on the instructions that they sent me and then a few months later.
Josh [00:17:19] Yeah. I was on a plane to West Africa.
Michael [00:17:22] Oh man, that's so incredible two years. Yeah, and I know some of what you and I talked about on on my visit on your podcast was about things being Comfortable and there's a lot of that opportunity and traveling and just the the idea of a travel destination that you don't really know much about can be very uncomfortable sometimes and I really applaud that you just, you know, rolled the dice and did it I can think of a couple quick examples where I miss those opportunities.
Michael [00:17:51] I remember being a kid and my mom had an opportunity. It was she went to Mexico for a visit and my brother went along and I decided to stay behind. Because I was on track for a perfect School attendance record that year and we're talking like I don't know 8th grade or something and not to say schools not important.
Michael [00:18:11] But you know in hindsight man, you know international travel was probably a lot more interesting and educational that couple days of school or even had a chance as a young adult. I had a job opportunity to get rotated to an assignment in Germany and at the time I had zero interest in Germany, and I know Add some real sort of stereotypes of what working in Europe might look like versus other places in the world and I turned it down and you know in hindsight there's a lot that I have not been to Germany yet.
Michael [00:18:42] There's a lot to interest me about going to see that I would have had a chance to explore by living there for a while. So I it's awesome that even as a young guy you just said The Gambia don't know let's let's do it.
Josh [00:18:55] Yeah it definitely and of course they are those uncomfortable situations. They may be So in the moment depending on you know what they are, but looking at them in hindsight later on you can't help but just like look back and laugh just a little bit and also those are the types of stories that you're going to want to like pass on throughout throughout the years and talk about because like going back to the example that you just said, you know, if by the way did you say that you ended up going down to Mexico or you stayed in
Michael [00:19:24] school? I did not I stayed in
Josh [00:19:26] school. Okay, because I bet like You know, if you did go to Mexico will do say that's going to probably be a story that you're going to want to tell people down the line not necessarily like yeah, I had perfect
Michael [00:19:39] attendance in school. Right? Not not tell you remember what you man, but exact know it's worthy of it. I can't even remember what grade it was. I couldn't pull out a certificate or an award or anything that came out of that. But yeah, I mean a lot about a lot of travel and you talk about it is about making memories.
Josh [00:19:55] Yeah, definitely and especially if you have like those uncomfortable situation And those Misadventures like I said, those are the ones that you kind of do reflect and look back on with you know, but a little bit of nostalgia, right because it's not like the moments where everything was sunshine and rainbows that you're going to want to tell people. It's like those awful times like oh my God, that's like one time I freaking had Giardia so bad.
Josh [00:20:19] I slept like the entire night on my pit latrine and I'll probably explain that a little bit more in depth as we go here, but it's just yeah those memories I think. And I'm kind of looking ahead a little bit when I'm let's say pretty much towards the end of my life. I'm on my deathbed and I'm back and looking at it all.
Josh [00:20:39] I want to be able to look back on everything and say my God, it was one hell of a ride, not the 10K and I don't want to think about man. I really wish I didn't play it so safe. You know, what if I had done this, you know, what if I had done that what if I travel to that place or even on slyke smaller scale items to what did what?
Josh [00:20:59] If I ask my boss for that promotion, what if I went to go talk to that girl in the coffee shop that I thought was beautiful and I wanted to meet her, you know, it's just taking those risks regardless of you know, and also just simply going along with just saying getting out of your comfort zone, you know, we've heard that a million times and for good reason to because there is so much value when you actually do decide to get out of your comfort zone and again, I just think like I said, I kind of think long term here.
Josh [00:21:26] Is that what am I going to look back on my life and Be more happy that I have done. It's going to be the uncomfortable things not the times where I decided to play it safe and I just let all these opportunities Pass Me By
Michael [00:21:39] yeah, absolutely. Well tell me about tell me about The Gambia and what kind of opportunity that was like it was it was and you and I met by the way, I Believe by way of the Spartan up media fast ultimately from from Tahoe, but more directly through Patrick Sweeney whose book fears fuel dropped yesterday.
Michael [00:21:59] So I think think you know, a lot of these kind of decisions are around fear either giving into fear or using fear to be harnessed and kind of drive you forward and the something like hey, let's let's take that blue packet from the Peace Corps and go figure out what the Gambia is all about.
Josh [00:22:16] Yeah, and definitely, you know, I really had that great conversation with Patrick about yeah fear and everything like that. And also I think that's what kind of continues to keep me going now is and then that definitely correlates with point that I just made about fearing regret later on down in down the line in my life too, but and I think there was a lot of things about Gambia that I was kind of, you know a bit of freight afraid of and nervous of at first obviously, we're talking about an entirely different culture than my own and also I had come to find out that the predominant religion of the country is Islam and that's and I was raised Catholic so it's entirely different to so I knew I knew that Was going to be a little bit of a change for me because also at this point, I wasn't really too familiar about you know, the ways of Islam and things like that.
Josh [00:23:08] And then also, you know, I knew I was going to be stripped of a lot of my modern amenities and by the time I got to my Village called bhajiya kunda, which is a little bit further into the Eastern side of the country that became apparent very quick. I was shown the house that I was going to be living in for two years.
Josh [00:23:28] No, electricity, no running water. My toilet was a pit latrine literally a hole in the ground like in the backyard and you see like little foot placements. They're like kind of close to the hole and I'll just let everyone use their imagination as to what those foot placements were there for but so I knew what was what it was going to be up at what I was going to be up against and I obviously, you know, I had a kind of a lot of fear going into that too.
Josh [00:23:55] I'm like can I really live like this? For two years because here I was about 26 years old at the time and 26 26 years of my life. I had pretty my pretty much had it made for all intents and purposes. You know, I had electricity I could go to the sink anytime I want and you know, turn it on now to have fresh and clean drinking water.
Josh [00:24:17] But now here we are. I have to go to a communal tap in the village that only comes on for two hours every single day. I got to fill up buckets and pails and I got a Walk back and forth carrying all this water and then I have to ration and allocate the water accordingly. Okay. I have this much to drink. I have this much to bathe with I have this much to wash clothes and I had to make sure I keep it within that without window as well.
Michael [00:24:45] So a lot of
Josh [00:24:45] challenges that I had to face along the way but I will say this and I hope I'm not getting to ahead ahead of what you want to talk about here. But there was something very liberating. Ting about living that way too. Yes, I didn't have electricity or running water guess what didn't have to pay an electric bill or water bills.
Josh [00:25:06] That was pretty good. I didn't have my car but I did get issued a really nice Trek Bicycle from Peace Corps. And so I didn't have to pay for any gas and I got in pretty good shape because you got to Pedal around everywhere you go and I also got pretty resourceful to because when you when you're out there by yourself, I mean granted I Is you know living in a village?
Josh [00:25:30] So I had a lot of gambians that we're living all around me, but me being like the only American and sometimes if I'm riding my bike or I'm somewhere out in the middle of the countryside something goes wrong. I get a flat tire you better buckle up pretty quick and get resourceful. Otherwise, you're stuck. So so so just quite like the challenge is there was a lot of really good moments that had to be there as well and you know, and then I had like all this and I also had a lot of time on my hands, too.
Josh [00:25:58] Ooh, I could I spend a lot of time exercising working on physical fitness. I was able to get a Kindle bless. My family's heart back home. They send that to me with some Kindle files and I was able to get some Kindle files from some of the other volunteers as well. So and I read like 50 books over the two years that I was living there got in really good shape and really just got a brand new perspective on things because the gambians that I was living with, you know, they kind of surprised me and I was A fascinated by what I was observing on just the regular day, you know, you'd think that with having so little and having to basically spend so much of your day doing these chores just to fulfill your basic needs.
Josh [00:26:41] You know, I feel like they would be unhappy or frustrated and what I was what I realized. What I was doing was that I was imposing my own standards on them. But the fact is is that those were some of the happiest people that I've ever seen in my life and I think maybe a lot of that in part was kind of going back to what we sort of talked about earlier was they were free of so much clutter because here in the states, let's face.
Josh [00:27:09] Let's face it. We're kind of materialistic. We we like our material Goods, you know, we like our cars. We like our TVs. We like our internet. We like our phones. We like our video games then fill in the blank.
Michael [00:27:20] Basically, you know, we like we like
Josh [00:27:22] our stuff but for them they didn't have but also all this stuff that we have With a lot of Maintenance do I like paying for your like subscriptions or hey crap this breaks. I need to get a new one now and and things like that or as I said gas in the car and paying for the electric bill and so on and so forth.
Josh [00:27:42] They didn't have any of that and therefore they didn't have to deal with any of the stress that comes with that either and they tell you men they were just living, you know, they were just living and again, it just felt really liberating. I mean, I'm not saying I would necessarily go back. To that life per se but it kind of made me re-evaluate a lot of things when I got back and I kind of cleaned house.
Josh [00:28:06] I went into storage all the stuff that I had stored away and I'm thinking okay. When did I get this thing? Like was this a gift to me? Did I buy this? I don't remember buying this. Why do I have this? And so I took a lot of trips to Goodwill. I was donating clothes and all kinds of other stuff. And even now if I ever have a Peace Corps volunteer ask me.
Josh [00:28:28] You know, what should I do with my stuff? Should I store it? Should I like give it to my parents? I'm like, well, if you haven't used it yet rid of your I'm I basically say you'll think about getting rid of it because when you come back, you're probably not going to want to have to deal with any of that stuff anymore,
Michael [00:28:44] right? Yeah. I think you and I both also got to know and I've spoken to Joe Runyan from impossible and I really like the way he described his philosophy around that to me is if you got something you haven't used it in a while you're just hoarding and Source that somebody else could take advantage of if you release it to them and and I'm really glad you brought up the point about just you know, kind of the happiness attached to Simplicity and keeping things simple.
Michael [00:29:09] Certainly. We have a lot of things here that make life more comfortable, but they don't necessarily make life more happy and they do come with an overhead and I can relate to both the, you know, the squat toilet and the you know the bucket of water to bathe and and just the Fetus to simple living all of which I saw in the mountains of Nepal which in a lot of ways is similarly rudimentary, but very very happy people seemingly, and even the you know, the used to the hole in the ground the squat.
Michael [00:29:47] The only thing is I've met a couple people that you know, make the mistake and nighttime of walking in the wrong side of the building and fall in the pit. That's not so good. But yeah, it's amazing. How adaptable people are and can just find happiness. We don't need all this kind of stuff to make us happy. It's about the kind of how you spend your time.
Michael [00:30:09] As you said and the quality of the people you spend it with. So tell me a little bit more about that or maybe in terms of how that time in Gambia took you from there to was the Marine Corps after that.
Josh [00:30:24] Actually my time in the Marine Corps came well before this. We're talking just post High School is when I decided to join the Marine Corps and like I'm talking no joke three weeks after I walked across the stage at high school graduation. I was on a plane to San Diego to get my ass kicked for three months. Okay, did
Michael [00:30:44] that take you
Josh [00:30:45] overseas actually know the unit I was attached to is what's called vmx 22. It's a V-22 Osprey Squadron, which some people might have seen those he's in movies before they're becoming much more popular and and movies kind of like a hybrid between like a plane and a helicopter and I'll just leave it at that for the description.
Josh [00:31:08] But at the time that I had joined the Marine Corps, the Osprey was actually not operational and what my Squadron was in charge of was doing, you know, a huge series of test flights to try to get the Osprey to go operational again, so they could take it overseas to like the Middle East. So, let's see.
Josh [00:31:27] And I think it was during that time. I'm in the Marine Corps when I really kind of gotten a pretty good foothold on like the rest of my life. I think it was a very found a lot of foundational things that I had picked up during my time there that even to this day I still recall upon and I think a lot of like the principles and I think just certain character traits as well like discipline perseverance.
Josh [00:31:56] And really just being I guess I'll just say for all intents and purposes pretty gritty both mentally and physically is really kind of served me. Well in a lot of other areas of my life specially and I think is sort of soften the blow with a lot of the challenges that I was sort of describing about being in Gambia egg because you know when you have when you spend three months, I'm as an 18 year old getting screamed in the face by real really hard core drill instructors.
Josh [00:32:22] You know, there's very little that can FaZe you beyond beyond that point.
Michael [00:32:26] It's that sounds like it would put life in perspective. Okay, I didn't realize the kind of sequencing there. I was curious because I read a few books by a guy named Eric greitens. I think is how you say his last name who is encountered some controversy was after his military career a political star and then became governor and there's there's some there's some baggage there, but he before the military he if he wasn't in the Peace Corps, he was doing similar things.
Michael [00:33:03] He got real creative about finding ways to travel as a younger guy finding things like photographic scholarships through different agencies and educational paths where he could get paid as a photographer to go overseas and and take pictures and ran into a lot of humanitarian situations that actually were what led him after that into a career in the military and a desire.
Michael [00:33:26] To try to go protect people who didn't otherwise have somebody that could protect them from from some bad bad stuff. So it's interesting what drives each person kind of along their life path and particularly around travel, you know, whether it's sort of leads you into something or it's something that you've been Led Led into I guess MIT really the key is getting started and one of the things you and I talked about and I think you talked about germs your blog.
Michael [00:33:56] Ugh and your podcast is is there that first step, you know, some of the common objections or excuses on why people don't travel internationally, but particularly Americans, right? It's a big continents Big Country. So, you know, what would you say about that? What are what are some of the common things that keep people from traveling?
Michael [00:34:16] And and what do you what do you say to those? How do you
Josh [00:34:18] address them? Well, I'd say there's a lot of answers to that question, but I think I'll kind of just focus on the two. I guess I'll say Common denominators that I tend to come across the most and they both start with f and that is a fear and finances now, I'll start on the financial side first, you know, a lot of people think they simply just can't afford to travel.
Josh [00:34:40] Well, you know, that's a there's you know, I wouldn't say that's an entirely an unreasonable thing to say to because you know, obviously travel cost money and you know, depending on what you do it can get, you know, pretty costly like no doubt and I'm not going to say I'm I'm a little bit of a budget trailer. I wouldn't say that it's necessarily my area of expertise.
Josh [00:35:00] There's other bloggers and podcasters out there that are much more skilled and the Art of budget travel than I am. But overall though, I think one thing that holds a lot of people back financially and a lot of them don't even realize this that they have a lot of subscriptions and what I mean by that is not just subscriptions would just like would say things like Netflix and streaming services, even though that does play a part of it.
Josh [00:35:26] But just in kind of like their everyday day-to-day, let's talk about people who like to go to Starbucks first thing in the morning. That's a subscription right there because that three dollars that you spend on your triple mocha Frappuccino with you know, couple shots of espresso about I don't really know what's at Starbucks. I don't really go there hardly like at all, but you know that stuff adds up after a while and they don't realize that or going out to lunch multiple times a week rather than taking your own lunch to work.
Josh [00:35:56] Work, you know that stuff adds up over time as well and I've caught myself in the zone trap to ride say oh I shouldn't go to Orlando this weekend because I really can't afford it. But then I go and check my Capital One transactions. I'm like, well, come on Josh you went out to eat to watch like three times this week. Okay, that's 30 dollars down. The drain that you could have used for gas to get you to Orlando.
Josh [00:36:19] But you chose to do this instead. So
Michael [00:36:22] then also on top of
Josh [00:36:23] that, you know, people got their cable bills and
Michael [00:36:26] Now we
Josh [00:36:26] got a gazillion One streaming services at their subscribe to it's like oh, well, we got Netflix Oh Disney plus just came out. I want to watch the mandalorians. Let me get that too. And you know, there's a lot of other things that they're subscribe to but it's just usually it's those little things that really add up and that's and I've also heard this described as a leaky pipe, you know, you got water flowing through a pipe and then and let's say that the water is your financial your income your in your Revenue.
Josh [00:36:56] Stream if you will and then people poke a lot of holes in that pipe with a lot of these small things.
Michael [00:37:03] So I think it really kind of becomes
Josh [00:37:04] Downs to just being deliberate and intentional with your spending like maybe you can say reduce going out to eat for lunch once a week and then Brown bagging it for the rest of the week, or maybe I tend to fare more towards watching these Netflix series, then these other streaming services. So let me just go ahead and cancel those and some and I've even You can change like Mobile plans as well because I found out hey this other mobile plan will still give me the same amount of coverage, but we'll have 20 dollars less and you know, the monthly
Michael [00:37:38] fees. So it's a lot of its kind of just really tighten up tighten up those small
Josh [00:37:42] things. I think is how a lot of people can address finances and if we want to talk about a little bit of budget travel is just
Michael [00:37:49] I always utilize
Josh [00:37:51] the kiss Rule and that is keep it simple stupid and sometimes a lot of people think they need Need to go all out whenever they travel. It's like let me throw down for the resort in this city or that City or what have you so and you know, I'm I'm now that I'm in my 30s. I'm kind of past that whole backpacking hostile stage, you know, let's just let all of us like all 16 of us camp out in the single room.
Josh [00:38:15] You know, I usually like to get at least like the private room, but maybe still share the bathroom with everyone else, you know, that's fine. But a lot of times those are really really just simple and affordable. If you really wanted a rough it like that you could pay maybe like about $20 a night us for you know, a hostel room somewhere. And then also it's just you know, there's there's a lot of like other like experiences out there that you can do for free, you know, sometimes just simply just walking around exploring the city's not going to cost you anything either and I noticed that a lot of people when they travel they spend a lot of money on things that they can't really take home with them and what I mean by that is things like again, we'll go back to the safe.
Josh [00:38:56] Buying a coffee every single morning or going to get alcohol at a bar and and things like that. It's just those you can't really take home with you. Those aren't really memories that will last and stand the test of time going to let's say wandering off the beaten path and seeing I don't know what like what whatever the case may be. I remember let's I'll talk about my time in Lisbon Portugal.
Josh [00:39:18] I just went out walking and I just came across this like Backstreet way up a hill that had a lot of really cool like street art and stuff like that. And it offered this amazing view. I didn't have to pay a cent for that. But I just remember like I just remember how amazing the city looked way down below when I made the climb all the way up there. So it's just really being deliberate and intentional with finances.
Josh [00:39:40] So I'll address it there and moving on to the next
Michael [00:39:43] Point. Yeah. Sorry before we jump into fear. Yeah. It's very good. Yeah, great way to create a memory and I think you and I talked a little bit about kind of background on your show. I'm going to econ guy and economics. All about scarcity of resources, which basically means you just have to make choices, which is the same thing that you just said and so like I'll throw out another extreme that I don't think you and I covered which is another great example of just making choices.
Michael [00:40:10] So we met some Travelers that have become really good friends. They were traveling the entire world for like 15 months more than a year married couple with two school-aged kids. And and these guys were we're not roughing it they were you know, they were On on you know package tours. They were going on all the optionals they were you know, they were doing it big but their life at home was had a lot of overhead to it as well.
Michael [00:40:39] The kids were both in private school like a high-end private school and in hindsight once they got back they realize that yeah, they do pay a lot for a high-end education for their kids, but having pulled their kids out of school for that year and homeschool them as they traveled what they did. In have to pay for private school that year actually paid for the trip for the year.
Michael [00:41:00] So it's kind of all back to the trade-offs and having a creative look at things.
Josh [00:41:06] Yeah, it definitely so like moving on to fear to keep us going in our conversation here is A lot of times is what I've observed when I try to tell other people about my stories and you know, they're fascinated by the idea of travel but you know, a lot of times they are afraid to not just so much for like the fear of the unknown which is very much like a valid fear.
Josh [00:41:31] That's kind of like one of the core fears that humans have is fearing the unknown but, you know, a lot of fears that are kind of perpetuated by things like social media, you know, there's a lot of negativity and social media and Mainstream media and we're constantly just being just bombarded with like the worst aspects of humanity like out there and so they see, you know terrorist attacks having Happening Here happening there and they're like, oh, I don't want to be anywhere near that and you know, it's that's that's a valid concern but I just kind of think that as long as you really utilize to Simply Common Sense which you know, and is actually kind of just keep your wits about you if you're in a foreign country and you don't spend your entire.
Josh [00:42:13] I'm just and I this is from a quote from Pat McNamara. He refers to this as 45-degree culture that we live in today. 45 degrees means your heads always tilting down at a 45 degree angle looking at your phone. As long as you kind of kind of have your head on a swivel and keeping your wits about you. Then you should, you know be pretty much good to go and I'm not talking about being paranoid.
Josh [00:42:35] I'm not talking about breaking your neck, you know with moving your head and Every Which Way Direction, but, you know being aware and being aware of your surroundings. And I would almost dare say that. And this is kind of going back to what I mentioned earlier about Japan is that I felt more at ease and safer and other cities abroad than I have and most of the US cities here in the US and because I feel like walking through some of the streets of New York City.
Josh [00:43:03] I'm a little bit more on guard than if I'm walking some of the streets in German cities. Yeah, and now maybe some people might have different perspectives on that. But at least that's how I felt too. So and there's also this thing out there called the Global Peace Index where this thing literally rates different country ranks, excuse me, a ranks different countries based on how peaceful they are with one being the highest score or I guess you can say the same.
Josh [00:43:33] If it's country with 193 being the most dangerous country within that list u.s. Is ranked around like a hundred eighteen. So if you want to go by that metric which seems to be a pretty well recognized metric is that it's you know, we're not all not all that save of a country
Michael [00:43:50] ourselves. So it's like yeah, that would say there are a hundred and Seventeen places that are safer than that here and I've met International Travelers in the u.s. That are scared to death, you know. Know that that's something that they see glorified and news or Media or movies or something is going to happen. When when I mean, you know, we're going to talk a little bit about your here quickly about your career as an archaeologist and you got a military background seen your Instagram.
Michael [00:44:19] You got you got some gun skills. You got some martial art skills. I call you like the real-life Indiana Jones. I pray that
Josh [00:44:26] that but your
Michael [00:44:28] I mean it doesn't it doesn't take superhero. To go travel the world safely. I'm glad you brought up Global Peace Index. I did not know about that resource. I've used things like the US state department as sort of one one day. This is a great one to use the UK has another one that has a little bit of a different.
Michael [00:44:50] I don't know maybe aptitude for things than the u.s. You know, you get a couple of data points. I like picking up like a Lonely Planet guide for where I'm going kind of reading about things to do. I don't know any other resources that you like or those kind of major
Josh [00:45:05] ones. I think those are kind of the major ones there for sure. Yeah, the state department will of course issue Travel warnings if they think that there's something going on and also kind of leave you like little bit of tidbits especially places to avoid like when I was on my way to Israel, I didn't realize that the entire Gaza Strip was under control by a terrorist organization at the time.
Josh [00:45:28] So it's a good thing. I knew that ahead of time so I didn't Venture into that. Area because it's right along the coast then I was wondering maybe if the beaches would have been cooler something but but I wanted that area. So yes, I'd say those are some Key Resources right there. Okay,
Michael [00:45:42] cool. Well, let's let's shift into your next big adventure. So you gave me a bit of a hint I think offline from when we talked and you were at the time about to announce this I'm going to put you on the spot has this been announced yet. Can we talk about your next big adventure? We can talk about it
Josh [00:45:59] because I think by the time this episode goes Alive, I would have already announced it myself. So
Michael [00:46:04] let's do it. So tell me where you're headed what you're going to do and this this sounds like a ton of fun as an adventure for you. But this all has a bigger cause and
Josh [00:46:13] Mission. Yes, exactly. Well this adventure that we're referring to I've called operation dual Trek duel as in to basically and what it is. I am looking to walk the entire length of two South American countries Paraguay and Uruguay, and yes. Is going to be for a worthy cause I'm looking to raise money for a nonprofit organization that I support called American veterans archaeological recovery.
Josh [00:46:43] It's was formerly known as operation Nightingale USA. So that that name probably might come up a little bit too. But so American veterans archaeological recovery or a VAR as it's short and what they do is they take wounded veterans and maybe other veterans who might be suffering from things like TBI or what have you and they take them onto archaeological digs and there's a multi-faceted purpose as to why they do that for one.
Josh [00:47:13] It allows them a chance allows veterans a chance to connect with other veterans because when a lot of veterans transition out of the military a critical piece that they're missing is their tribe, you know, they were part of this tribe of Warriors for a good part of their life now, they're not and so the part of their identities missing for all intent for all intents and purposes. This is so get some connected with other veterans.
Josh [00:47:35] It also gives them another mission, you know, they spent a good amount of their time. They spent their time in the military protecting our freedom our way of life. Now, they have a mission to protect cultural heritage, which is a pretty cool which is pretty cool if I do say, so and also this isn't really like a vacation per se I mean, it did can feel vacation like specially with the travel aspect which I'll get to in a second but it's more or less like a program like there's certain certain things that the people within a VAR try to do to set their participants up for Success who knows maybe having this experience may be those who participate may think archaeology might be something they want to pursue as a career.
Josh [00:48:17] Okay? Well here here's some next steps that you can follow here. Some people you can talk to him. Feel free to list this as a reference, you know, if you'd like, you know, and or if they want to pursue something else. Okay, great. Well, let's get see what we can do to get you on the track. So Basically try they try to set it up to where they don't return from this event just to the same position that they were, you know, if they're there that if they come out on the digs, you know, we want to set them up for some success moving forward because obviously they got a long life ahead of them.
Josh [00:48:49] Just within like the length of time that they're there at the dig site and the create the CEO and founder of this this organization of Stephen Humphreys. He's a former Air Force. Upton good friend of mine and he kind of gave me a little bit of a leg up in my own archaeology career because I met him in England.
Josh [00:49:10] He was there studying at the same time. I was and he set it up to where I can come out on a dig that he was leading and I gave me some some very necessary field experience and also allowed me to create that connection. And so I was in that kind of served me. Well as I returned from my grad school experience because I Ready archaeology in the UK. I
Josh [00:49:33] don't know if we mentioned that yet. And once I came back here and help me, you know, get my career rolling here. So I so I definitely an organization that I had that I really trust and the way that this is going to be set up is we have a GoFundMe page for this and basically it set up to where all donations that come in.
Josh [00:49:55] They go straight to the organization. I will see see none of this money. I'm actually going to be self-financing. seeing the entire cost of this Expedition and so because that's ultimately what is I really want to do I'm not even really seeking sponsors for this Expedition either and if I do I'm only going to accept like maybe gear sponsorships or something like that if anyone wants to insist on sponsoring this Expedition financially, I would just ask them that they go send whatever money they thought about sponsoring and go donate it because you know, it's just when I think about a lot of things that are happening within the vet Community where they say 22 veterans a day commit suicide, I'm not sure how accurate that number is today.
Josh [00:50:40] I know that was kind of an arbitrary number that was said a few years ago that kind of stuck. It could be more than that. It could be less. I certainly hope that it's less but let's just say for the sake of discussion. It's 22 that's 22 lives that could have added some value in this world 22 lives that could have been leaders of the community leaders of a family.
Josh [00:51:02] No, maybe leaders of a business that could Thrive and go out and serve others or maybe valuable employees in some and and a job somewhere. And so when I when I when I just think about that man, it's just heartbreaking, you know, just the value that veterans can bring to this world because they've done a me like veterans have already done amazing things, you know because talking about like, I know I only briefly talked about bootcamp, but you know, it did it takes it really takes something special to pull through boot camp and is just and that's an amazing thing to achieve just to get through that alone.
Josh [00:51:41] And maybe that's that's I'd also say that's another big reason why I want to do this Expedition because I've never done a thru-hike before. I mean, I've done other cool challenges, you know, I've done a spot I've done Spartan races and other obstacle course race is I've cycled long distances before I did MMA fighting fought in the cage in one and and things like that.
Josh [00:52:02] I have ran a marathon but I've never done something like this before so
Michael [00:52:06] so to some degree, I'm
Josh [00:52:07] wondering can I do it? Am I capable of it? And I We have that I am and I think part of this journey and part of the story that I want to tell is I kind of want to you know, maybe showcase and maybe remind I guess I'll say the veteran community and well not just the better Community but just us as in humans in general is that we are capable of doing amazing things.
Josh [00:52:31] Like if you live if you're in like the city somewhere look at those skyscrapers, we built those look at some of these Ancient Wonders out there the Great Pyramids of Giza and things like that. We freaking built those we aren't there is so many amazing things that we are capable of doing as humans. And so I that's kind of I what I think I just really want to try to Showcase and that's the point.
Josh [00:52:53] I really want to drive home with this Expedition and also remind Veterans of as well. Is that there you're all are capable of doing doing amazing things because you already have done amazing things bootcamp and just the and anything that you've done, you know with your deployments or throughout your military career is that You've done some pretty amazing shed and you can continue on living amazing lives and don't lose track of that.
Josh [00:53:17] So so yeah, but overall, that's kind of basically what I'm going to be doing in a nutshell and I'm going to be stepping off in June of this year
Michael [00:53:26] June. Okay. Yeah, that's amazing. And I think it's an incredible Endeavor, but also just an incredible reminder as you said for all of us, you know, you spent some time here in San Diego. It's a huge military town. It's also a town that has hugely successful. All veteran Community entrepreneurs and a support for that but it's also a community that has a huge huge number of veterans that are effectively lost as homeless.
Michael [00:53:53] And then as you mentioned there are a lot of other challenges including including suicides, you mentioned TBI pts. And and so there's there's there's an incredible cause there that I love to hear that you are that you're supporting and you know, there are a lot of people who kind of travel Oh and work and live on the nonprofit dime.
Michael [00:54:16] If you will, you know, I think even the some of the big organizations that are fairly lean still consume 10 percent of donations to run the company. So you are doing something where 100% of the GoFundMe is going to go to this cause it ties back to your career as an archaeologist. I
Michael [00:54:36] love that. It's it's creating a tribe again. It's it's providing a For the group of guys and I know you're going to be able to do it man. I think you've told me it's a thousand miles or so. Yeah, and I know you're going to do it because you've got an incredible purpose behind this you just described your your why and your passion comes through about this cause that you're going to help so I know that's the fuel that's going to get you through this thing and I will get the details from you on the go fund me so we can put that in the show notes for this episode on the website with also appreciate the cast.
Michael [00:55:11] Cast and honored to help help spread the word on that cause what else should listeners know about finding you and your podcast your website your travel blog.
Josh [00:55:26] Yeah, absolutely. So my website is all around adventure.com and you could listen to the podcast there if you'd like or you can also find it on iTunes Spotify Stitcher all those major. Casting platforms you can find it there there as well. If you'd like to connect with me on social media.
Josh [00:55:47] I'm on Facebook and Instagram at all around Adventure. That's just one word. No - is I'm on Twitter at all around Advent can quite fit the you re because Twitter doesn't allow for very long usernames there, but you can find me over there all around Advent. I'm also on YouTube kind of starting to put videos out in that space as well.
Josh [00:56:07] I'll guess I'll probably just have to send you the link because when you're just kind And of starting off and you have less than like a hundred subscribers, they give you like some weird wonky link. I can't create a custom thing just yet, but I'll get that to you, but they can find me on YouTube as well.
Michael [00:56:23] Perfect. Yeah, I found that link. It's already up on on my site and you think you'll be shooting some videos to share on YouTube along your your fundraising adventure and Paraguay and Uruguay.
Josh [00:56:34] Oh, yeah, absolutely and also, you know let people know that this is going to be pretty raw Adventure. I'm doing this pretty much solo and unsupported meaning I'm not going to have like a camp fancy camera crew with me or anything like that or I'm not going to have like, you know some support vehicle, you know, it's just I'm going to be self-filming, you know, just out there pretty much just being nomadic going across these countries like that.
Josh [00:56:59] But yeah, I do plan to do some Vlogs and I'm also hoping I can continue to podcast to now and also with the podcast I will be taking a little bit of a production break / per my usual. I mean, I don't think I'll be able to really interview guests for my show. Well, I'm way out out there in the middle of nowhere. So but I do hope to continue putting up Podcast which will more or less be like updates like dual trick Chronicles, or I don't know that's a working title working title.
Josh [00:57:28] So they'll see a little bit of a change of pace with the podcast if I'm able to get them up. I hope lips and has like a mobile recording app that I could use or something. I have to look into that but that's something I still hope to do.
Michael [00:57:41] Yeah, that sounds like an incredible adventure and I know whatever you're able to share out of that, you know, just you and a guy with a cell phone and a GoPro or whatever. It's going to be that will be awesome to tune into I wasn't sure if you had any other vets coming along along with you and I know we just got it. We got to talk about this real briefly because I thought it was pretty funny when you talk about it being raw and and I know you talking about how to plan this thing out.
Michael [00:58:07] You've described Paraguay to me as the country that Google. I forgot.
Josh [00:58:12] Yeah, cuz now going with Google Maps. Typically they got that little little guy stick figure thing towards like the bottom right that you can grab and then all the streets will highlight where you are and you can just kind of drop right there on the street and get the street view for that one particular spot. But when I tried doing that with Paraguay almost nothing like lit up at all and I'd say probably at least like half like the half of the country which The area's I'm going to be walking to the to like the northwest of the area which is called The Gran Chaco region where I'm starting nothing came up there.
Josh [00:58:49] So I'm not sure what's on the ground that I'm going to be up against really or what it's going to be looking like for me. So
Michael [00:58:57] so I hope like yeah,
Josh [00:58:58] there's no I hope I'm not going to run into like, you know scarcity of water sources or anything like that, but I always say that if I have to go anywhere to resupply I want to get dropped back off right back to where I left off and continue on their I don't want to you know, like I said, I'd get a little bit of head down or little bit down the road and then just continue from where I go from there. I want to go right back to it and keep on keep on moving and do it right because you know, I guess I want I'm determined to walk the length, you know, so it's going to be a it's going to be interesting.
Michael [00:59:27] That's really cool. And it's a little bit kind of, you know old school. Now, there's all this technology and kind of jump into street view or whatever and get some idea about where you're going that you going back to the fear thing. You know, that's a way of getting a little bit comfortable. Before you actually go so you're getting the old school experience right where you have no idea what to expect you're going to drop in and figure it out.
Josh [00:59:48] Yeah, and I think you know, yes, we've talked a lot about fear today. But one thing we didn't really talk about that. I think could almost be like a stronger physical, excuse me, a human characteristic and that is the carrier curiosity and I think curiosity is also another very powerful thing in our minds to and I think that's another thing that kind of is drawn me to these places is because all for one not only have I not been to South America before but I haven't been to either one of these countries and I know very few people who actually have so I don't really have like a lot of stories or Intel from people who've been on the ground to tell me any things for all intensive purposes.
Josh [01:00:27] These countries are quote unquote Uncharted Territory to me. So but I think here easa T has always driven us as humans. If you want to go all the way back to our ancient ancestors, you know who saw the sunset over a All and was wondering what's beyond that hill so they decide to walk over there and take a look or those who saw this massive body of water in front of them and trying to put together some sort of contraption that could float so they could go see what's Beyond the Horizon or even just if you want to get a little bit more recently what the hell's on the moon.
Josh [01:01:00] Let's see if we can build something I could take us to space. So I think you know here curiosity is a very huge driving factor that I think all of us in all of us human beings have and I'm sure you could probably we even got pretty excited when you plan your you know, backpacking trip around the world and was looking at the map and just thinking about okay. Where should I go? I mean what's out there right?
Josh [01:01:20] I think it's just something that we all have is humans. And I think that's what also makes this trip pretty exciting. Even if there's a lot of unknowns to it as well.
Michael [01:01:30] Yeah. I can definitely agree with that that curiosity is something that probably fuels the desire for travel but likewise, I think travel it. Perpetuates that Curiosity and and starts to develop it which you know as you found from your first two weeks abroad in Japan has spawned into a whole passion in deed sort of a career as well as the Endeavor and now the philanthropic cause that you've got so incredible story.
Michael [01:02:01] Why don't we wrap up with a couple quick ones? These are these are tough questions ever pick a favorite, but I'm going to ask you for a couple favorites will go go. Sit here and and use this to maybe close out with some ideas to hopefully excite some other people about going to new places and trying new things. So favorite place. You've traveled to
Josh [01:02:21] Josh. Well, I probably would go back to Japan but I would also say Japan could potentially be tied with Morocco. Like I loved visiting Morocco. I you know got to visit some of the souks in cities like Marrakesh and Fez. I did some trekking in the Atlas Mountains and I went out to the Sahara.
Josh [01:02:41] Desert and rode camels for a few days and I'll tell you what man, when you're out in the middle of the desert the night sky is just it's unbelievable where you have no blue light pollution and when I went out there was a full moon and it might as well just been daytime because that full moon was so bright because nothing was you know, inhibiting its light whatsoever.
Josh [01:03:04] So I'd say those two countries are tied.
Michael [01:03:07] Awesome. Okay, Morocco's has definitely been on my list so great to hear that. Reinforced I want to go see that and yeah, I can I can think of a time I was camping pretty remotely it's the first may be the only time that I was able to see so many stars that I could actually see the Milky Way belt which I think a lot of people, you know in a modern city with light pollution and never seen okay favorite person.
Michael [01:03:32] You've met through
Josh [01:03:32] travel. Niqab that that that's an easy one. My baby host sister. Could I hadn't again? Yeah, her name was aissatou. She was born about three months after I had arrived and I'm telling you man. It was just she's also probably the I think what I was able to do for her was probably my greatest accomplishment.
Josh [01:03:55] I'll try not to keep the story a too long. But basically, you know, the Gambia is a hot spot for malaria, and I noticed that my post House didn't have mosquito Nets. So I told my I talked to my host father and I told him a little bit about malaria. Now typically for many gambians. Malaria is almost kind of like to them. It's like a catch-all term for if you just if you're sick in general, you know, if you you know, you got a cough, you know, you're you know, you just got the regular flu, you know, you got malaria that's kind of how they view it.
Josh [01:04:23] But when I explained it tried to explain to him that it was its own distinct disease and that it was the mosquitoes that spread it, you know, he kind of looked at me with like this weird like shock and Face, like I just blew his mind. And so then he took the initiative and he got a mosquito net for every single bed in the house and for aissatou. He got her this like kind of mosquito net that was sort of shaped like a crock pot lid.
Josh [01:04:47] So they just lay her in her crib and then they just cover her with this like crock pot lid mosquito net. I'd tell you man that just warmed my heart. So it says whenever I really think of my time in Peace Corps, you know, she's one of the first people that come to mind so don't know if she'll remember her. Big brother but I'm definitely not going to forget her.
Michael [01:05:07] That's so so cool. They had that connection and a way that you made a difference and in a number of lives. Okay, and you know food we talked about, you know, both love to eat and and there's all kinds of fun stuff. You can try when you're traveling to different places and I think you've told me you kind of have a philosophy of just saying yeah, let me let me give it a try.
Michael [01:05:27] What's the what's the most interesting food that you've tried around the world?
Josh [01:05:33] All right. Let's see. I can I can name three because I actually did a blog post on this when I when I was in London, I went to this exotic food play some I had I had a meal worms pan fried crickets chocolate and chocolate covered Locus for dessert. That was pretty interesting. So I just had like a bug she mortgage board that I tried there when I was in Gambia.
Josh [01:05:57] I ate a bush-rat one of the students at my school. This is during the week and campfire. For the Scout program that I was helping to coordinate. He brought me in another teacher this big giant rat that he had dangling by its tail and I told him to get rid of it and he's and he's like, oh no, mr. Will eat it and I'm like what? No, no no get get rid of it.
Josh [01:06:19] But then the teacher says oh no these rats are they're edible, you know, we can eat them it's fine. So at that point, I was just kind of intrigued I'm like, oh, okay. Well, we'll bring me a piece, you know when you're done cooking and so so they brought me the front leg of this giant rat turned out what this student. had done is he literally took a pee took a bucket of water and literally flush this thing out of its hole just poured all the water in the hole when the rat came out snatched it up killed it with his bare hands and then, you know made made us breakfast and then the third one and I kind of ate this unknowingly, but it was Ram testicle and we had to basky which is a Muslim holiday to and then when We had slaughtered we had this Ram in the backyard for a few days.
Josh [01:07:07] They slaughtered it and they remove the Rams testicles and they carry my little host brother carried them away in a bowl and I lost track of them from there. And then it was until after we had our Feast that night where I thought to myself wait a second where those testicles go that my little host brother carried away. So I asked I asked one of my hosts hosts Brothers about and they said oh, yeah, the testicles are in the bowl.
Josh [01:07:30] I'm like great. I just ended that night with with Ram testicle in my stomach which that sounds so wrong to say out loud. But yeah, so so I would I can't really tell you on how that taste it because at this point I was just so hungry that you know, I just saw all this protein in this bowl because we didn't get meet very often while I was living there.
Josh [01:07:50] So I just you know went
Michael [01:07:51] crazy. Hey man, that's how you know, when you're the VIP guests when they're when they're flushing out a rat to cook up or you get all the best parts of the ram so I man, I know Got some amazing Stories and we could probably go on for a long time. But I think the best way to wrap it up is to say all this stuff gets packaged up and what you created.
Michael [01:08:13] This is why you have the all-around travelpod cast and you've got the blog on your website. So I know I started off by saying that it's it's your mission to share amazing tales. And I think this is just a great little preview for people of what you have going on over there again, I will put the links to your podcast website your social media.
Michael [01:08:33] In the show notes for this episode and I want to make sure I hook up with you afterwards and we'll get the link to the GoFundMe as well knowing that you'll be pivoting away from the typical podcast here come June and you're on an incredible mission that I hope we can all help support.
Josh [01:08:49] All right, I appreciate you having me on today, man. And I appreciate you allowing me to share my story and tell a little bit about what I got coming up and you know, this definitely was a great conversation. I will encourage the listeners that again if they want like a Prelude Food or a prequel depending on how the episodes come out know you yourself Michael was a guest on my show.
Josh [01:09:09] We had a great conversation over there. So you go check that out that one out as well.
Michael [01:09:14] Yeah, you bet. I will also cross link to that one. Once you have it posted and we can cross promote that get people kind of share them back and forth and hopefully tuning in and man. Yeah, no pleasure is all mine. Thanks for coming by Josh and I'd like to have you back once you return from your Next Big Adventure. ER and hear all about that one.
Josh [01:09:35] Yeah, I'd be happy to come back on for sure. Alright, man. Well, thanks again today. Yeah, you bet. Thanks a lot.
Michael [01:09:42] I cool. Yeah, Josh has got some fun stuff going on operation dual-track going the full length of two South American countries that he's never been to doesn't know much about really doesn't even have much information about it. Just sounds like like a great adventure for Josh personally. I know he's gonna have a ton of fun and come back with stories. You can share with us, but also using it as a tool where he is completely self funding but dedicating awareness to such a great cause cause if you're interested again go out and hit man of Mastery.com 0 4 0 learn more about operation dual track and if you feel inclined hit the hit the go fund me page as I did and support that cause that Josh is Raising awareness for through his truck.
Michael [01:10:29] And again, hopefully, you know best wishes on his journey that starts to Summer and we'll look forward to having him back here down the road when he returned safely and can tell us I'm sure a more Adventure and growth stories from Paraguay and Uruguay All right, that's it for this week guys next week.
Michael [01:10:51] Well, I'll leave it as a bit of a bit of a surprise, but I've alluded to it in a few episodes past some opportunities. I've had here locally to ride along with some really interesting folks and learn from them and learn from the environment that they serve in and so I am going to share that story in some fashion.
Michael [01:11:12] I think coming up next week and looking forward to finding the best way to package it in a way that that on. honors how they serve and what they do for our community until then have a great week and we'll see you back next week on the man of Mastery podcast episode 41