Traveler Tuesday – Craig of Vagabond Disposition
Do you ever get the sense of how cool and laidback someone is by reading their about page? Well, that's what happened to me when I learned more about Craig of Vagabond Disposition. He seems like a really cool guy who spent a tremondous amount of time exploring Thailand (and a lot of Southeast Asia) while teaching English, something he is now continuing to do in Spain.
Let’s meet travel blogger Craig!
 When and how did you become a traveler?
I got bit by the travel bug on my very first long-term trip abroad to Costa Rica and Peru in 2010 on a summer break from university. However, I don't feel that I became a real traveler at heart until after I graduated and bought a 1-way ticket to Thailand in 2013!
 What kind of traveler do you define yourself as?
Ever since my initial move to Thailand 4 years ago, I have identified as a plant-and-jump-around-from-time-to-time traveler. I love to dig deep into a foreign culture and really get in touch with where I'm at by making a sort of home base, and in turn use that base as a jumping-off point to other destinations nearby. For example, over my first 2 years in Thailand, I worked as an English teacher and moved 4 different times.
Although I spent a few months in each location, I traveled around nearly every weekend to different spots in Thailand, and neighboring countries from time to time as well. As a result, I have traveled to nearly half of Thailand's 76 provinces and much of Southeast Asia! Although I have done a few several-weeks-long backpacking trips, I definitely prefer slow-paced travel, and really getting to know the local culture as well as their more secret, off-the-beaten-path spots.
 What do you love most about traveling?
The culture shock. 100%. I crave the feeling of stepping into a completely and utterly foreign, exotic environment and feeling out of place. It can put so, so much into perspective about how we see the world and truly makes you appreciate the uniqueness of other cultures. I think other long-time world travelers can agree that it is this one, single feeling, this ‘A-ha!' moment, that keeps many of us on the road for life.
 What do you dislike about traveling?
The difficulty of gaining and maintaining long-term friendships and relationships. While it's all too common to hear that “You're never alone on the road!” (which is overall true), the friendships you make do tend to feel so fleeting; you click with a fellow traveler, connect on so many levels, spend an awesome few days or even weeks together, only to eventually tip your hat and set off again alone. This is not to say I haven't made any long-term friendships while traveling! However, after awhile, I do feel a desire for a longer-lasting and present community of friends; hence why I like to spend so much time in one place.
 Why should people travel?
This is a tough one, because no one person is the same in terms of what they should gain or learn from travel. However, I think one thing everyone could use more of (regardless of what country you come from) is a greater sense of international awareness. I think so many problems in the world today (racism, sexism, xenophobia, bigotry, to name a tiny few) could very well be remedied by gaining a greater understanding of how and why other cultures function the way that they do. The old mantra “Don't judge someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes” rings true more than ever with travel.
 What famous person would you like to travel with?
I once saw John C. Reilly at a rooftop bar in Bucharest, Romania. It was painfully obvious that absolutely no one knew who he was – he actually seemed to look like he was having trouble getting a drink at the bar! Regardless of that, he was all smiles, chatting with people nearby, and really seemed to enjoy himself. Because of that one experience (and mostly because he's the only famous person I've ever seen, home or abroad, and I am obsessed with his movies), I think he'd be a super fun guy to travel with.
 Travel essentials – 3 things you always travel with.
Earplugs, external harddrive, and ukulele. I love playing music (piano, drums, bass guitar, and trombone, to name a few!) though those instruments don't exactly fit so well in a backpack. Small, lightweight, and easy to maintain, my ukulele simply does the trick.
 If you’re a foodie, what's your favorite food city? Do you have a restaurant recommendation?
Bangkok. Hands-down, without a doubt. The options there are truly endless! As for a restaurant recommendation: any hole-in-the-wall place down a side street with a few Thai people already eating there. Seriously! Spots like these will have the most authentic, delicious, proudly-prepared food you can find in the city.
 What's one location on your bucket list?
Samoa. Particularly American Samoa, as I could potentially stay there for up to 1 year, visa free!
 Do you have a piece of advice for bloggers starting out?
Blogging is about doing a lot of very small things every day, for a very long time. That being said – it's not a race! Set aside time every day, as much as you can manage (1 hour, 2 hours, 6 hours!) and focus on a laundry list of small things that you know you can confidently check off, daily. I struggle with this myself, though I find that when I do follow this method for several weeks at a time, my productivity really does soar. Take your time!
Craig's Lightning Round of Favorites
Airport: Dublin (I literally could go on for an hour about just how awesome this airport is)
Mode of Transportation: Motorcycle
City or Country: Thailand!
Travel Gear: Kelty Redwing 49L Backpack
Travel snack: Pretzels
Book: The Backpacker, by John Harris
Movie: This is a tough one! I'd say it's a tie between ‘Blow' and ‘The Curious Case of Benjamin Button'
Song: My all-time favorite song has got to be ‘I Am the Walrus' by the Beatles
You can keep up with Craig on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and of course on his blog. Wherever you catch him, I am sure you will enjoy his travel adventures!
How about you? What would you like to know about Craig?
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Well, who wouldn’t want his lifestyle? I agree that many people are close minded and could benefit from being planted into other cultures to really see the hows and the whys. I think experiencing different foods is a fantastic thing as well.
Wendy, really glad you enjoyed my interview! I can’t stress enough how vital travel can be for fixing unjustified prejudices many people have about cultures other than their own.
I want to live abroad for at least a year. I really love his plant and jump around from time to time way. I think living abroad and immersing oneself in a foreign culture is a great way to understand other cultures.
Tracie, I highly recommend it! Where do you have in mind?
Oh my gosh, what he loves about travel is what I fear – being 100% out of place and the culture shock. Great read.
Christine, it once was a great fear of mine as well. Though once conquered over and over again, it actually starts to feel good! 😉 Many thanks for your kind words.
Traveling and living abroad is something I would love to do. I like his approach to setting time aside each day to work to focus on the small things.
Catherine, thanks for your compliment 🙂 Always trying to focus on the marathon, not the sprint!
Lucky man indeed! Its one of my dreams to travel around the world and witness different culture myself and meet new people along the way
Mary, many thanks! 🙂 Start small – a few short trips here and there – and see what you think!
He seems like he has a great life! I love his outlook and everything he does!
Neely, it makes me smile to hear it! Thanks very much! 🙂
I would like to know… You go to these countries teaching English (My cousin did that in several Asian countries), but how much of their languages do you know? Fluent?
When I first arrived to Thailand 5 years ago, I didn’t know a single Thai word or phrase past “Sawadee kap!” 5 years on, I can speak basic Thai, but I am nowhere near fluent. However, schools strongly prefer that you don’t speak their native language, as the children are supposed to be fully immersed in English.
Traveling abroad is something I did not do before having kids, so it’ll likely be a long time to go out of the country to travel again. He sounds awesome to travel with!
I really appreciate hearing that! 🙂 Where do you have in mind to one day travel to?
Being a travel blogger is such a life experience I hope to embark on when the kids are older. Its such a fun experience being able to explore different places and see different things
It’s certainly not a bad life, Janella! I hope you do it someday 🙂