$3800 a night.
3800 dollars a night. In USD. Seriously.
Down the street they paid 3800 dollars a night and our view kicked their view’s ass.
And guess what?
I was house-sitting.
What a bum!
What a life!
I mean, I never want to take myself too seriously. I stare at a glowing screen. I strike little squares with my fingers.
I change lives I free folks I get paid….yadda yadda yadda.
Hey, I get it. My intent is taking shape. I am freeing me, and you. So I manifested one of the most stunning, shocking, life-affirming, beautiful views on earth, in Savusavu, Fiji, from June to October in 2014.
Picture this: the crib was nestled 150 meters high on a jungle cliff overlooking Savusavu Bay and the Pacific Ocean. We had sweeping, panoramic views of the water, the mountains and damn, we were surrounded by some 20 plus papaya trees too. We had papaya daily, picked from the yard by yours truly, as well as:
- Passion fruit
- Well, FOUR types of papaya now that you want to know
- Bread fruit (although it tasted sucky, it was still on the grounds)
- Red bananas
- Yellow bananas
All these fruits. On the grounds. With the best view on earth. And we were house sitting? Are you serious? Yes I am.
Blogging from Paradise does not suck.
Until it sucks, for those character-building minutes….or hours….or days….when you’re a dumb-dumb who doesn’t go to the doctor, when an alien life form is growing from within your gut.
Pukus from Paradise
Sweat poured off of my brow.
I had vomited for the 4th time that night. I was dying. Or so I thought.
After losing 20 pounds in 10 days I – like an idiot – still didn’t demand to be rushed to the hospital.
I could see the vertebrae in my spine. My cheeks were hollowed.
On the upside, my 6 pack abs were back. Was the modeling offer from 12 years before still on the table? I hoped so.
But I was sick, really sick, and I needed fluids immediately….or else….
Lesson: Don’t eat *anything* in India which tastes remotely funny. Hell, don’t eat salad dressing or eggs or anything which spoils easily, because you may just wind up like me….puking in paradise.
I shared this harrowing tale as a little counterbalance. Blogging from paradise may will expose you to the entire tropical experience from time to time. How delicious and interesting!
Blogging from Paradise: What You Need to Know
98.9676% of my blogging from paradise lifestyle has been as sweet as the Holland Papaya I picked daily from Savusavu, Fiji. I’ve enjoyed my ride, living for months in places like:
- Costa Rica
- Sri Lanka
I’ve loved the life. I LOVE the life. But more than anything, these days, I want to take you with me. I am freer and freer daily and I want to take you with me to paradise. Wouldn’t it feel amazing to laze in Laos? Or to chill in Chiang Mai? Or to soak up the best view on earth in Savusavu, Fiji?
Of course it would!
Props to my friend Lorraine Reguly for suggesting this post topic. I had to mention her, because hey, she was the genesis for this post. She’s the only person who talks more than me in the comments section and if you like to gab that much, well, you have to earn some type of recognition for your persistent engagement.
So here you are Lorraine!
We may be here for 6,000 words. Or, for an eBook. So let’s get started.
Before we dive in though I wanted to clarify; this post is about both living in paradise, and blogging from paradise. I’ll break down things you need to know life-wise and business-wise…because this blog is called…Blogging from Paradise (duh, right?).
What I intend to do is to give you a glimpse into what it’s like to live in paradise for years at a time. Kelli and I have traveled through many pristine, tropical locations for the past 44 months. We have learned a world of lessons along the way.
We’ll get hard core at times. Which is good. No filters.
I also wanted to promote my kick ass eBook,
Here’s a 5 star review of the eBook on Amazon, from reader Natasha:
Testimonial for my Lovely Traveling and Blogging eBook
“Ryan is a captivating story teller who imparts important blogging lessons through stories of his most challenging travel moments. This book is a great resource for any blogger who is trying to learn the ropes of the business. I enjoyed reading this book because I never felt like I was reading one of the countless ‘blogging advice’ e-books that can sound preachy and boring. Ryan beautifully drives home the point that to be successful as a blogger, you must be patient, selfless, focused and willing to work tirelessly. Some hard hitting lessons here about building a strong foundation as a blogger!”
Come to think of it, I just created my Buy 1 eBook Get 1 eBook Free deal today. Why not pick up 3 eBooks for the price of 2? Click on one of those covers way up top on the page for Buy 1 Get 1 Free then pick this bad boy up. That’s 25% off a 3 eBook bundle, which is a phenomenal deal!
I also wanted to explain what it’s like to blog from paradise. I’m not just island hopping with a banana shake in hand and shades on, being the Joe Cool of Jimbaran. I work guys. I have fun, but I do work, and I blog, and I have built a successful enough blogging business to generate a full time income.
I know what it takes to be a digital nomad, whether you wish to blog from paradise full time, for years, like us, or whether you wish to dip your toes into this deal for a few weeks or months.
Now, on to the 21 things you need to know about blogging from paradise.
1. Paradise Isn’t Always Hot
Fiji, during high season, dropped to 55 degrees F on some nights. For my Celsius friends – aka much of the modern world – that means cold as hell. Kelli and I freezed our fannies off at first. We were stunned.
I mean, we knew it’d be chilly but were shocked by the chilliness. Ditto on Chiang Mai, Thailand. Low season in Chiang Mai, especially in December, means temps in the 60’s and 50’s at times. We’re talking sweat shirts, ski caps, sweats, scarves and all that good stuff if you’re used to hot temperatures.
Even the dogs wear sweaters in Chiang Mai during the cold, chilly early high season months. It’s bananas.
This one will screw you up, if you visit a spot like Chiang Mai or Fiji during the cool point of high season. You’re all ready with tank tops and shorts and flip flops, then when you walk outside in early December at 11:00 PM, getting ready to snag a mixed vegetable curry at one of the countless food stalls, you freeze your buns off. So be ready, and research the heck out of the tropical hot spot you’re visiting because it may be a cold spot.
Pack your ski cap, sweatshirts, sneakers and socks for this time of year.
Yes, but 4 months after this December chill Chiang Mai sees daily temperatures of us to 115 degrees F. The tropics can throw you a curveball.
Coolest Spot: Tie between Savusavu, Fiji and Chiang Mai, Thailand (during respective high seasons)…both spots, mid 50’s at night during the coolest time of the year.
2. Paradise DOES Get Damn Hot
I checked the temperature in Hoi An Vietnam. I did a double take. The heat index was 117 F at 7:30 AM. 7 in the morning and sweat dripped off my elbows. Amazing. Of course being the nut job I am, I went for daily bike rides through the rice fields when the heat and humidity created 120 F or higher heat indexes.
Hoi An was the hottest place I visited and Pondicherry India came in a close second. Heat indexes reached 115 F regularly. Both Hoi An and Pondicherry were so freaking humid. Heat is one thing but when you factor in humidity you’re dead. Or, you’re alive, but will sweat like Patrick Ewing while doing indoor and outdoor stuff.
- Drink 1 gallon or more daily in paradise. Hydrate yourself in brutally hot climes
- Research tropical hot spots before visiting to find out how truly hot these spots are
- Do touristy stuff and cardio early in the morning and early in the evening; we witnessed large groups of Cambodians exercising by the river at night in Phnom Penh, a notoriously hot and humid city in SE Asia
- Don’t push it; if you’re getting acclimated to hot and humid temperatures and your pasty white behind can’t take it, just relax, and don’t force day trips, etc.
Hottest Spot: Hoi An, Vietnam…heat index of 117 F at 7 AM one time!
3. A VPN Will Be Your Best Friend
Our VPN kept us sane in India, Nepal and in other red flag countries like Sri Lanka.
Paradise has a seedy side. Aka, idiots from counties beside the equator sometimes spam and scam folks in their desperation. This means financial websites and some social sites flag your accounts if your IP address pops up as being in one of these questionable nations.
Our VPN helps us to log in from San Francisco or NYC, in America, which means we don’t set off those red flags which lead to accounts being locked.
If you’re going to blog from paradise you darn well better pay $8 a month for a VPN. For peace of mind, to keep your cash online flowing and to avoid being blocked from social media sites.
In Communist nations like Vietnam and Laos we were able to Facebook it by using our VPN. Pay for the service so you can show off your tropical selfies, and so you can *get paid* while living anywhere on earth.
You’ll NEED a VPN in: India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Vietnam (Communists block Facebook)
You can shop around for a VPN but I’d just get with Strong VPN. It hasn’t failed us during our 44 month island hopping trip. Just invest in the darn thing to save yourself a world of headaches, OK?
Movies? Where? When?
Penang, Malaysia was a movie nuts dream. We paid $3.50 – or less? – for movie tickets. The theaters were stunningly beautiful, modern and quite frankly put our New Jersey theaters to shame.
One reason: movie piracy is such an issue in Malaysia that movie prices are bargain basement. Even in world class theaters.
We saw kick butt theaters in:
- Colombo, Sri Lanka
- Bangalore, India
- Hue, Vietnam
- Chiang Mai, Thailand
As for Savusavu, Fiji, hell nah, there are no theaters. It’s remote. Ditto for Laos. Cambodia suffered such a massive blow during Pol Pot’s murderous reign that it hasn’t recovered yet. No western style movie theaters in the capital or anywhere in the nation from what we saw.
Costa Rica had a few theaters but we never attended flicks. Ditto on Lima, Peru.
Well, if you want to operate outside of the bounds of the law you can buy bootlegged movies in places like Bali, Vietnam and Thailand. Late releases, for about a buck per DVD. Not that I would do anything so disgraceful. (wink….wink….)
As far as creativity, Sihanoukville, Cambodia takes the cake. Kelli and I paid a few dollars – literally – to watch DVD movies in a tiny motel room/movie theater. We had about 5 rooms/theaters to choose from.
For a few extra cents you can buy soda and snacks. The rooms are dark, air conditioned and pretty darn neat. This is a creative workaround to not having movie theaters from a dude who converted a motel into an entertainment center in paradise.
Best Movie Theater: Penang, Malaysia
5. Paradise Provides You with the Ultimate Inspiration
I published 10 Blogging from Paradise eBooks in 4 months, in Fiji.
I conceived the idea of Blogging from Paradise in Fiji.
This may be a “duh” moment, but paradise is the place to visit for unlimited inspiration. Get our your credit card. Book the weekend trip to Costa Rica or do the weeklong trip to Bali or just heck, become a religious reader of my blog, and of my social media accounts, if you want unlimited inspiration for retiring to a life of island hopping through smart blogging.
You need to know: you’ll find deep reservoirs of talent you never knew existed in you by living in places like Monteverde, Costa Rica for a month.
You’ll become an absolute creative blogging dynamo, publishing 3,000 word, inspired posts, by living in paradise. Or maybe 6,000 words posts.
You’ll find the best blogging tips (check out Sue’s post is a gem) and you’ll share them for your audience by living in paradise.
My home office views are some of the best on God’s Green Earth. Kelli and I chose to blog from paradise because we wanted to be free and we want to take you with us.
Make the decision. Subscribe to my blog. Buy my eBooks. Come along for the ride!
Most Inspiring Place: Savusavu, Fiji.
6. Thai Lady Boy Whores May or May Not Stalk You in Paradise
2 Thai lady boy whores tried to grab me or stalk me or rob me 2 weeks ago at 6:00 AM by Khao San Road in Bangkok.
Hey, it happens.
I had to tell you. To be transparent about paradise.
Most Crazy Place: Bangkok, Thailand.
7. Cost of Apartment Rental/ Home Rental
OK this one ranges from a few hundred bucks a month in Chiang Mai, Thailand to thousands of bucks a month when you’re talking villas in Bali.
Your taste dictates your cost.
If you want a simple, clean apartment in Chiang Mai, Thailand, you’ll pay anywhere from $400 USD to $600 USD for a nice spot. A 1 bedroom job. That is no typo. $400 and up, for a real nice place. Chiang Mai is inexpensive. I feel it’s about the most inexpensive city in Asia and many other expats agree, as some 50,000 expats live in the Chiang Mai complex. Complex meaning, in suburbs around town plus in town.
You’ll pay higher rates for really high end stuff in CM, but most readers here would be happy with the $500 a month kick butt nice spot.
Thailand – Inexpensive.
Bali – largely, inexpensive, although it runs more than Chiang Mai.
Costa Rica – $600 or more a month for a decent spot.
Laos – Reasonable.
Malaysia – More expensive than other SE Asian spots.
Fiji – Inexpensive, largely….but we house sit….lol…..so we have no renter’s experience.
We use sites like AirBNB to find apartments or homes..
Homes in places like Hoi An, Vietnam, can be rented for $650 a month. Yes, a 2 bedroom, large, expansive home, for $650 a month.
Not bad, eh?
Now we’re on a house sitting kick. I vibe with the comedian who said, “Be friends with the guy with the big boat, instead of buying the big boat.”
Hey, to watch a cat or dog, and to do a little landscaping, I can live in some ridiculous tropical hot spots for free. I’m in.
Fiji was a 4 month house sit and we’re also doing a 1 week house sit at an apartment in NYC, with a stunning view of the East River. Not bad, not bad.
Here’s a cool house sitting site: Trusted House Sitters
Lowest Cost of Living (for Apartments and Homes): Chiang Mai, Thailand with Hoi An, Vietnam coming in at a close second.
8. Shopping Options
Phuket has tons of shopping. So does Chiang Mai, in Thailand. Ditto in some Bali areas like Kuta and Ubud.
In paradise though, once you travel outside of town the options diminish. During our recent stay in a Balinese neighborhood in Klebang Moding, we had access to a warung, or corner store, and that was about it. Everything was cheap as hell because we paid Bali prices. Bali prices are non-white/non-Boolie prices. We’re talking 8,000 Ruppiah for ice cream cones and 2 assorted snacks.
8,000 Ruppiah = 66 cents. Or $.66 USD. Funny, right?
In general, in places like Cusco, Peru, and Playa Potrero, Costa Rica, as you head away from town you’ll see places to eat, and that’s about it.
The big cities in any paradise have virtually all the creature comforts you’d associate with Europe, Australia or the United States.
One note: the big deal mall in Vientienne, Laos was pretty neat. As of 2012, it was consistent with malls in the USA from approximately 1982. I thought it was cool though. I would call it a glorified flea market at best, but I’m not saying that sarcastically my friends. Just sharing my take.
I admired the folks from Laos. They were proud of their country and their big deal mall, the online one in the country, so good for them!
Bartering in Paradise
Uggh….I get it, but damn I hate bartering. In many spots in good old paradise bartering runs rampant in markets. Some SE Asianites and other folks are adopting Western-Style pricing, meaning, put numbers on items to be clear and to save both parties’ time. I love these guys and gals.
Other folks are more old skool.
If you run into a bartering situation just do your best to have fun with it. These folks will go really high so you can go really low, then you either meet at an agreeable point or thank them for their time and move on. It’s nothing personal, remember. People will try to get the best part of the deal, but in virtually most cases they will be fair.
Best Shopping: Phuket, Thailand or Ubud, Bali.
9. Food Options
Food virtually everywhere we’ve been was cheap as hell.
Chiang Mai and Southern India both take the cake.
Kelli and I ate lunch at Chiang Mai for $2 USD a day, or, for 60 Baht.
- Large serving of rice
- Unlimited cups of water
- Warm bowl of soup
- 3 curries, rich with vegetables and tofu, or some faux meat
$2 was for TWO folks, by the way. When I did Chiang Mai solo I ate lunch for $1 a day.
In Kovalam Beach, India, Kelli bought a huge bag full of product for like $2. It was obscene. Oranges, spinach, bananas, the volume of fruits and veggies for like $2 was asinine. I couldn’t believe it. Thought it was a mistake until they kept charging the same price when we bought the same thing daily. Kelli and I do not explore much on the food side of things. We’ve seen roasted tarantulas in Siem Reap, Cambodia, and fried scorpions in Bangkok. Boar heads in Kathmandu and all types of wacky, living, bleeding food in Vietnam. Vietnam’s kind of gruesome for the living food bit. Kill the damn things already guys!
Anyway, we keep it simple. Veggies for Kelli all of the time and I eat vegetarian 95% to 99% of the time.
Food options were limited in places like:
- Savusavu, Fiji
- Playa Potrero, Costa Rica
- Muhamma, India
- Ninh Binh, Vietnam
These were off the beaten path places with only local fare for the most part.
Favorite Dish: Mixed Vegetable Curry in Thailand.
Best Food Spot: Chiang Mai, Phuket and Ubud, Bali (for kick ass Western fare) in a Tie
10. You’ll Become Magnetic to Successful Bloggers
I magnetized myself to successful bloggers like:
- Don Purdum
- Andrew Spence
- Adrienne Smith
- Donna Merrill
- Kerry Russell
- Phillip Dews
- Carol Amato
- Lewis LaLanne
- Chris Brogan
- Yaro Starak
- Dino Dogan
…by blogging from paradise. My vibe went through the roof, being surrounded by inspiration and by being pushed out of my comfort zone on a daily basis. This perfect storm of conditions makes you attractive to successful people. What a delish ride you’ll take, blogging from paradise!
I spoke to a class at NYU last week. My friend and NYU professor Matthew Capala graciously invited me to do so.
Here I am. Do I look like the new Wizard of Oz, because I’m the wizard on the curtain?
Matt and I became good friends and business partners in paradise.
You’ll attract success by living an inspired, freeing lifestyle.
Count on it my kiddies!
Best Blogging Buddies I Met in Paradise: All of Them
12. Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable
I learned a few words of Indonesian over the past month. I had too. Otherwise I’d be grinning like an idiot at the Balinese women who lived in our complex. They didn’t speak English. They didn’t have to. They lived in Bali, in a Balinese hood, and hey, I should learn to speak Indonesian, because I’m a Boolie living in their country.
Folks, paradise may be paradise, but that doesn’t mean everybody speaks English there. Some people may and most will speak enough English to sell and buy yet, you’ll find yourself in uncomfortable situations when it comes to language barriers and cultural barriers. Freeing, and fun, yet uncomfortable situations.
I remember waiting for 2 hours for a bus in Vietnam. 2 hours. Why? I have no clue in hell. The bus driver just showed up and smiled and we took off after waiting for 2 hours from the alleged departure time. I couldn’t ask what happened. We were not in a remote area of town but nobody spoke more than a word of 2 of English.
Paradise rocks but paradise means that you better be ready to be comfy with being uncomfortable.
Language barriers can be frustrating to overcome but I’ve learned to roll with it. Hand signals work nicely. So do calculators.
I once recall walking into a vegetarian restaurant in Hoi An, Vietnam. The waitress and cook were fast asleep on the tables. The heat index regularly hit 120 degrees in Hoi An. Sue them! But what we found as funny may be a bit annoying for less fun-loving folks.
I figured that visiting paradise was a chance for me to slow down and leave my “insane rushing through every day New Jersey Mania” behind. And I did. Other people may not adjust as quickly. Hey, it’s paradise.
I felt bad waking up the Vietnamese women but I wanted a veggie burger. So I coughed really loud, they woke up, smiled, and got to taking our orders and cooking. It was a real hoot!
Kelli and I routinely saw a shop owner in Phnom Penh, Cambodia sitting in his underwear. Just his tightie whities. While he was keeping shop. I thought it was hysterical. Kelli did too. Other more serious folks may have viewed the situation as being a bit uncomfortable.
My advice? Be comfortable with being uncomfortable. Be open to experiences. Don’t judge. Blogging – and living – in paradise will place you in many new, exciting, uncomfortable situations. You will see some eye-popping things – such as animals being slaughtered on the street – but in the end, reserve judgment as much as you can and be open to the experience.
You’re being freed folks.
Most Uncomfortable Experience in Paradise: Having Giardia in Muhamma, India (more on that later)
13. Pants Are You Worst Enemy
I rarely wear pants in paradise. Pants don’t work.
Mind out of the gutter folks! I wear shorts. Shorts allow your legs to breathe. Shorts help you feel cool. In paradise.
Contrary to popular belief it’s OK for tourists to wear shorts in conservative spots. Shorts are OK, but if you want to wear tank tops as a guy, or go topless as a dude, or if you’re a woman who wants to wear a bikini top you may not be respecting the local culture in places like Cambodia or Laos. Shorts = OK. But unless you’re in a heavily touristy area like Phuket in Thailand or Seminyak in Bali you want to keep things conservative when it comes to bikini tops, or shirtlessness for guys.
Most Time Spent Partially Nude: Phuket, Thailand
14. Automate Sparingly
I know. You need to automate from paradise. I was 17 hours ahead of EST when I lived in Fiji. So I automated. But I did so sparingly because automating like a mad man or mad woman causes one to lose the personal touch, the connecting factor, the trust building factor.
You do need to reach multiple time zones. I’d suggest tweeting out new blog posts 3 times daily. Hit the East, Europe and America. That should work on Twitter.
As for Facebook share updates once daily. Automate to hit your target market. I automate updates from paradise to hit my 7 EST target time.
Recommended Automating Tool: Hootsuite Pro
15. Your Net Worth May Skyrocket Overnight
Blogging from Paradise in Chiang Mai, Thailand means your net worth increase 5 to 6 fold – or more – overnight.
Think about it: you’ll pay $1 for lunch from a Thai stall or veggie restaurant and you’ll pay $350 to $400 for a kick butt, modest, tidy apartment in CM, so imagine how quickly your USD or AUD or other Western currency multiplies? This is why I don’t do income claims. Who gives a shit if you make $10,000 a month? You can live like an absolute pimp in Chiang Mai for $1000 a month or less, unless you’re a drunk.
I am no slave to the dollar. I make my dough and move to paradise places where my dollar explodes. We really, really benefit from watching our monthly income – which is doing nicely, thank you, by US standards lol! – multiply to big pimping type levels.
Blogging from paradise may permanently skew your healthy perspective on Western living. I almost vomit when I pay $11 for a meal in NJ or NYC because I paid $1 for similarly-sized meal in Chiang Mai. Or I paid $2 for a full, healthy, nutritious meal in Bali, or in Pak Nam Pran, or in Fiji. So yes, you may be a bit mad after being spoiled in paradise. But the flip side is if you commit to blogging from paradise and create value and make connections you can do this gig full time.
If you want to explore tropical hot spots with a low cost of living research:
- Chiang Mai, Thailand
- Ubud, Bali
- Phuket, Thailand
- Phnom Penh, Cambodia
- Hoi An, Vietnam
I don’t do the exact figures bit but I can guarantee you after living in these spots for months that they are some of the most reasonably-priced spots on the face of the earth, paradise-wise.
Best Paradise Hot Spot for Boosting Your Net Worth: Chiang Mai, Thailand
16. Mosquito Nets Rock
I avoided a rash – literally – of mosquito bites in Klebang Moding a few months ago. Our friend Wayan hooked us up with mosquito nets.
A few months earlier in Fiji we were beset with mosquitoes once we walked outside of the house. It wasn’t pretty. I felt like the victim in a slasher flick. The little SOB’s ate me alive in Savusavu. But in Bali, we were saved by the mosquito net.
Buy one or ask your host to purchase one if you are living in a mosquito-rich zone. Trust me, you’ll know if you’re living in such a zone after your first night in the spot.
Where We Could Have Most Used a Mosquito Net: Kerouatan, Bali
As far as Blogging from Paradise you’ll never know exactly how the internet works until you spend a few days in the hot spot. You can discern through reviews if the internet is dependable. Dependable means, up for 80 to 90 percent of the time.
You’ll be hard pressed to find a lightning fast connection in paradise. In almost 4 years of island hopping we’ve had a lighting fast connection in Pak Nam Pran, Thailand. That’s it. We did have a fast connection in places like Klebang Moding, Bali, and in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and in Savusavu, Fiji, we had a nice solid connection too.
In some Bali spots the internet was horrific. Terrible. Hey, it was paradise! We dealt with it. In Cusco, Peru, it was tight. Ditto with many spots in Costa Rica.
The only spot where the internet was an absolute nightmare was Kerouatan, Bali, because we were working off of a stick and also we were in a jungle area with poor reception.
The internet is included with rent in virtually all spots. We only had to pay for the internet in Savusavu, Fiji and it was a bit expensive. Most months we plunked down $120 or more but the quality of our connection in a place well off of the grid made the investment well worth it.
Practical Tips for Using the Internet in Paradise
- Do your homework beforehand; check reviews on sites like AirBnB to get a feel for reliability of the internet connection
- Buy a dongle to access the internet from anywhere with an internet connection; you can find one on Amazon for under $60
- You’ll never know exactly how good or bad the internet is until you live in paradise for a few weeks, or a month; this is part of the game
- Access the internet in restaurants or other hot spots by your tropical accommodation if your connection at home stinks
- A poor internet connection gives you an excuse to write more eBooks and super in-depth, thorough blog posts offline
I haven’t traveled to Africa yet. No need to get shots. If I did the Dark Continent I’d get my shots.
As for India, Bali, Sri Lanka and Nepal, well, each country is a bit old world with a few having less than optimal health standards. Bali is solid, but India is probably the least clean country I’ve visited. I don’t blame the residents; it’s an awareness issue. In truth, many Indians are super, super clean, and hygienic, at least from what I’ve seen.
With that in mind, if you’re a Westerner you’ll likely puke your guts out at least once in India. It’s gonna happen folks.
Kelli and I and Pukey
Kelli and I had some hardcore food poisoning in Pondicherry, India. This is par for the course. She has backend, I had frontend and backend. Anyway, it was a much more fluid view of paradise than I had seen to that point…..ha!
I had pizza. I threw up the pizza within 30 minutes of completing my meal. That my friends, is hardcore, indicating that I probably ingested crap or something else horrific for my body.
I noted scenes like this in Pondicherry; walking down a side street I’d see bottles of olive oil sitting outside. I walked down the same street 4 hours later. The same bottles of olive oil were sitting in the sun, for those 4 hours, being subjected to a 115 F heat index. As you may imagine the microbes and other little nasties that grow in rancid oil, cooking in the sun, can wreak havoc on your digestive tract.
This is paradise folks. Sometimes in the tropics you’ll be subject to less than sanitary standards. You will build up a tolerance over time and you can’t worry about the sickness. All you can do is be aware that if/when you get sick, you’ll have paid your tuition on the road.
I had giardia in Muhamma, India. I lost 20 pounds in like 10 days. My fault. Big time. I didn’t go to the doctor when I knew something was wrong after 4 days of feeling very off.
No need to revisit this story again. Just click the following link to learn more about my run in with giardia and some other whacky travel experiences in paradise.
Anyhow, if you ever do get giardia in paradise, get high powered antibiotics into your system pronto. In India since you’re dealing with some nasty third world strains of stuff, and the MDs are a bit more lax, you’ll take an antibiotic which is roughly 15 to 20 times more powerful than its American counterpart. It’ll kick your ass, but it works!
Practical Tips for Keeping Healthy on the Road
- Do not eat with your hands; forks and spoons are the way to go
- Do not eat street food
- Do not eat fish unless you’re eating from a respected, hygienic restaurant; folks, your wimpy system likely can’t handle fish that’s been sitting out in the sun for 6 hours, and much of this fish served in less than fancy establishments has sat out in the sun
- Wash your hands before eating
- Stick to fruits, veggies and complex carbs
- Stay away from salad dressing in paradise; it often spoils
- Stay away from dairy in paradise; warm, humid temps promote spoiling
On to the next tip.
19. Water Weight Will Never Be a Problem for You
Ha! I lose 5 or more pounds within a day of traveling from New Jersey to the tropics. Every time. Water weight be gone!
20. Airports and Bus Terminals and Train Stations Are Your Best Friend
I flew 25 hours from Bali to NYC a few weeks ago. I got a bunch of stuff done, sitting in airports in places like:
- Denpesar, Bali
- Bangkok, Thailand
- Kuwait City, Kuwait
When I flew from Phuket to Fiji in June of 2014 I was able to get work done in places like:
- Phuket, Thailand
- Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
- Sydney, Australia
- Nadi, Fiji
Can you kinda get why I published 10 eBooks in 4 months? I take a ton of time off to get my creative juices flowing but I also create a bunch when in transit to and from paradise.
Use your transit time wisely. Rest, and do a bunch of creating.
I mean, I enjoy my time in paradise and I enjoy my transit time but I also get to creating, to publish really helpful content, and to stand out from the online crowd.
21. It’ll Be the Most Freeing Experience of Your Life
44 months ago I was a shy security guard. Today I’m a prospering, funny, pretty well known blogger who’s:
- Spoken at NYU
- Been endorsed by celebrities
- Island hopped for the past 44 months
- Lived in places like Fiji and Bali for months at a time
- Generated a full time income through blogging so he could retire to and blog from paradise
I freed me by blogging from paradise.
Here’s an example.
At the beginning of my latest trip to SE Asia I had to fly from New York City to Bangkok, Thailand on my own. To let you know about the old me, I didn’t like taking a taxi cab or bus or train on my own, 2 or 3 towns over.
I took the train from NJ to NYC, and then the LIRR was cancelled, so I had to take the subway to Queens. Then the air rail to JFK airport. Then I flew from NYC to Delhi, India. I flew from Delhi, to Mumbai. I flew from Mumbai to Bangkok. I flew from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, and then I took a taxi cab from the airport to our apartment in Chiang Mai.
I know I know, give me a brownie. Not a huge accomplishment to seasoned travelers and hell, looking back on it, it was easy peasy. Yet 6 years ago when I first bought my domain and hosting and started my online journey I’d have called you a loon if you said I was going to travel on that journey….BY MY SELF!
As a kid I wasn’t even allowed to cross the street on my own. Umm….even a few years beyond my kid days, lol! Yet here I am. I have freed myself through traveling.
I have freed myself by blogging from paradise.
I dove into uncomfortable and freeing situations, day after day. For years. So here I am. World traveling dude, living for months in Costa Rica, and Fiji and Peru, and in Sri Lanka, and in Malaysia. Amazing, right?
Travel freed me. Or, my decision to travel freed me.
I know you can blog from paradise.
You can be free in Fiji, or you can chill in Costa Rica, or you can ball in Bali.
I believe in you.
Make the freeing, uncomfortable decisions to free yourself from bondage, and I will see you in paradise.
Do you blog from paradise?
What new things did you learn today about blogging from paradise?
Have you ever been accosted by Thai lady boy whores?
Did you ever fall ill on the road?
What tips or insights would you add to this list?
Call to Action
What a perfect lead in to my eBook:
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