About this episode:
Note from Leah: This is the season one finale of Wander By Proxy! Thank you so much for listening and sharing the podcast with your loved ones. The stories will return in August!
Stephanie James, a poet and singer, shares how working remotely has given her the freedom to share her poetry around the world.
Follow her adventures on Instagram at @justavessel22 and visit her website justavesselpoetry.com.
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Transcription of this episode:
Stephanie: When you’re able to appreciate the differences in religion and culture in love in life and every aspect of life, It opens you up and widens your horizons, right? That’s why, when people say like travel was the only thing that you can spend money on, that makes you richer.
Leah: Welcome to the season finale of Wander By Proxy, a podcast featuring women’s travel stories that connect them more to themselves and the world around them. I’m Leah Falyn, and today we have Stephanie, who’s a full-time digital nomad, but it’s her poetry that has taken her around the world. Here’s Stephanie.
Stephanie: I was working for a fortune 50 company and I started to travel and I went to Greece and I went to Italy and I just started to have like this instinctual desire to travel.
So I was like, I have to do something different.
I was trying to get my company to allow me to work remotely.
So in 2017 I visited 18 countries.
Leah: What kind of things did you see in Ecuador and what was like the most memorable thing?
Stephanie: Yeah, for sure. I mean, Ecuador is a really interesting, country, just because the people are very, very suspicious. So you have to build rapport, but relationships with them before they kind of like open up and let you in.
So that was a fun challenge.
If the tourists, if the tourists provide like, you know, a small donation, we would be able to come and visit the home.
And, Guinea pigs are actually a cuisine. They’re a delicate delicacy in Ecuador. So they sell them, for consumption, but they also had them in their homes as a source of,
So he’s like, you know, some people in the world are so poor. All they have is money. And,
you know, sometimes when you see different things or you’re in a different place, you say, Oh, that’s weird. We don’t do that.
Or this, we don’t do it that way. I, from that point I embraced like very early on that it’s not weird, it’s just different. And so when you’re able to appreciate the differences in religion and culture in love in life and every aspect of life, It opens you up and widens your horizons, right? That’s why, when people say like travel was the only thing that you can spend money on, that makes you richer.
Like, I really believed that I really resonate with that because if you’re open to learning and growth, you absolutely grow exponentially. When, you know, in your travels, undoubtedly.
I started writing poetry in 2004 so long time ago.
I was an open mic host.
And so I love to see the different responses and reactions to my poetry, to my singing in different countries.
I’ve had people in Ottawa buy my CD that don’t even speak English because they liked the delivery of the poetry. So I’m super grateful for that, but that’s one of my passions. Something that I will continue to do in my travels is, is seeing and share my poetry with the world. And I do inspirational poetry.
So it’s more motivating. It’s uplifting. It’s feel good poetry that I write.
Leah: Oh, that’s amazing. And can you give me example, you said that you get different reactions in different countries. Can you give me a few examples?
Stephanie: For sure. So once I’m in Vietnam,
, there’s a backpacking street in ho Chi Minh city, and I had no idea that.
This gentlemen that was leading a karaoke on the street was very famous in Vietnam. So I just walked up to him and I was like, Hey, can I, can I sing with you? And he was like, yeah, absolutely. Yeah, no problem. So I get on the mic. I also beat box and people love beatboxing right. So I beat box. I’m singing, I’m doing my poetry and little did I know this guy’s famous, like in Vietnam.
So like, We’re going. I check on YouTube. We have half a million views on our video. I’m just hanging out, having a good time. Like in Vietnam, the crowd was going crazy. It was, it was,
Right. So that’s how they articulate it. What they felt from it.
Leah: That is really interesting.
Stephanie: Yep. I used to be a wedding singer for three years, actually, as well. In addition to working for the fortune 50 company, I’ve have serenaded over 80 weddings in my lifetime.
So that was a good time. And then,
So the first one is in,
, when is ours Argentina? The second one was filmed in Budapest, in Hungary, and then the third one in ho Chi Minh in Vietnam. So that was really fun to like meet other videographers internationally and come up with different concepts for my poetry and bring them to life abroad, you know?
So that that’s been an amazing experience as well. I’ve recorded songs and Lisbon Portugal.
Leah: Yeah, so it’s been fun. So then COVID hits. How has this mess impacted your plans?
Stephanie: Oh massively. I think like three days before I was headed to Peru.
Like I’ve heard such wonderful things about it. My Spanish is pretty decent. It’s grown, you know, over the past three years. But,
but I do think that it has put people, put the simple things in life, back into perspective and made people really appreciate and value what’s most important in life.
And then hopefully, you know, we’ll all appreciate what’s to come and when those things open back up and when we are able to go to different places again, we’ll appreciate that much more. Hopefully from this experience.
Leah: Thanks for listening to the season finale of Wander by Proxy. I’m going to take a beat, gather more stories, and Wander By Proxy will be back in August. Be sure to check out Stephanie’s poetry events and more on her website @justavessel.com and on her Instagram links are going to be in the show notes. Be sure to rate and subscribe, to Wander By Proxy and follow on Instagram for bonus travel stories. I know we’re all eager to get back on a plane, but until we meet again,