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Being driven by a singing, one-armed taxi driver 600km in Botswana, hitch hiking in a cargo boat through Burma and China, drinking in the toilet cubicles on a 14 hour train with no seat ticket – awesome experiences, and ones that don’t come from studying our Lonely Planet inside out.

cricket in bangladesh
Staying in the 'suburbs' of Dhaka, Bangladesh

When I reel off some of the crazy stuff that’s happened to me over the years, it brings a genuine smile to my face. All these memories warm my soul more even than the thought of seeing the Taj Mahal, The Pyramids of Giza or Petra, it’s always about the people.


Sitting in hostels, meeting fellow travelers, I often hear people say to me “That’s so cool Johnny, wow but that kinda sh*t just doesn’t happen to me”, and a few people nod in agreement. “Wow, you’re so lucky that happened, must have been amazing”


Maybe the stars aligned and allowed me that experience, maybe I hang a rabbit’s foot around my neck, maybe I collect four leaf clovers and stuff them into my pants each and every morning. Or maybe it’s something else.


Amazing things happen to people because they put themselves out there, they’re open to propositions, they chat to random people, they invariably say ‘yes’ more than ‘no’.


If you want to attend a wedding in Malaysia, don’t stay in the ‘Rasta hostel’ with all the other backpackers for a week. If you want to drink tea with old Japanese men then you won’t get that from eating in McDonalds in Tokyo.


When you’re on the road, strive to be different. Be open to everything, never say no. Sit down with strangers, smile at the local girl in the corner, buy that guy a beer.


In fact, apply this not only when you travel but in every corner of your life, remember if you do what you always do, you’re gonna get what you always get. And if you’re not satisfied with what you’re currently getting then change something. Our world is full of amazing people doing amazing things, and guess what folks… they’re not lucky, they made it happen. Now what are you gonna make happen? Happy travels.

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Got a question? Wanna comment? I'd love to hear from you

4 thoughts on “Motivational Monday: That Kinda Stuff Never Happens to Me

  1. Great post and totally with you on all aspects of it. This kind of random stuff does happen to me and I wish more travellers got out of the “bubble” and did all the crazy sh#t. On my travels I’ve hitchhiked a ride in Belarus with a family wearing Barcelona shirts from 1988, swam naked in Antarctica, got an invite to a Middle East wedding, planted pyrethrum and drank till the cows actually did come home on a farm in Tasmania. The travel dreams we have become reality. But ultimately you gotta get up and do it. You don’t just sit in a rocking chair and build a revolution!

  2. Haha no. He is a research analyst, but it does require them to be on CNBC and Bloomberg at times to defend their research.

  3. All talk and no action make for a boring life. Dare to be different and walk your own path.

    Just doing one thing differently can bring about a whole new set of changes.

    Last February I persuaded my husband to quit his job because he was working an insane 90+ hours a week. That lead to him finding a job in Hong Kong which lead us to being taped for House Hunters International, which made me realize that I never wanted to be on TV again. But it made my husband realize that he is comfortable in front of the cameras. Which then gave him the confidence he needed when he went on CNBC’s Cash Flow in Hong Kong.

    So yes, I know exactly what you mean you say it is not only due to luck but to putting yourself out there and be willing to take risks and be prepared to succeed in some adventures and fail in others.

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