Isolate Yourself With Yourself ft Matthew | Ear Biscuits

(upbeat music) – Welcome to Ear Biscuits, I'm Link – And I'm Rhett

This week at the round table of dim lighting, we have Mythical Entertainment employee, Matthew, who did a very mythical thing that we're going to talk about, his solo trips to Japan and Iceland, and we'll get into exactly why we're talking about that very mythical thing with a very mythical person – Extremely fascinating, that taps into a passion of ours, which we have written about in a book – Yes we have – But we'll talk about that But first, we gotta keep the life blood flowing, which, the more we share with you, Ear Biscuiteer, the more we then have to update

So, it's like, we had this, we had this big long thing about, discussion about your, you throat malady – Yeah – And – [Rhett] Mm-hmm – I know you went back to the doctor to get a special scope, and it's not that I don't care about you– – But, you didn't ask anything – I didn't ask, well you didn't ask about my optometry visit either Were you saving, I was saving, I was saving it until now, 'cause I want to hear along with the listeners, how it went, because– – Are you equating your optometry visit with my throat visit? – No, I was just saying you didn't, but you didn't ask me if my vision changed It didn't, it didn't

– That's so sensitive – Is your throat better? – So sensitive of you – It's not that I don't think anything's wrong with your throat, it's that– – I wish I had a simple answer for you, Link I wish I had a simple answer for you The answer is, my throat is not better

(clears throat) That would, that would, I did not do that – How convenient, my throat not better – I still, okay good news bad news, okay? Why don't I just tell you the story? 'Cause I went back to the doctor, the doctor that I talked about on the show – Did he know you talked about him, was he listening? – Isn't that the question everybody has? So – Well I don't know – As I was driving to the doctor, I was thinking about the fact that – You dished some dirt on him – The podcast was coming out, and I had not yet been to him, but there was a 24 hour period between the time the podcast came out and – He had a w-, he certainly could have listened to the podcast, yes – But, but, but to be clear, I also thought about what I said and I didn't, I mean, I didn't throw the guy under the bus

I just, I told a story about how I felt that he was posturing a little bit because he didn't know who I was and the girls in the office did know who I was – It's something you would never say to him, that then if he heard you talk about it to a lot of other people that weren't him, he would then probably feel weird and it might color the experience you had with him next time – The follow up procedure? – Yeah – Yes, so then I started thinking about what he's gonna– – I mean, he is gonna be putting an apparatus down your throat – What he was gonna be doing to me, and I was like, well, I mean, I didn't say anything offensive and I think if he's, based on everything I know about the guy– – Maybe he would apologize

– He's got like a, it seems like he's got a good sense of humor, so he'd probably be like, oh I heard your podcast, pretty funny stuff, or something like that, like But, all indications when I returned to the doctor's office were that no one– – He still had his head up his own butt (laughter) – No one had listened, I'm not gonna say anything No one had listened to the podcast, so apparently they're not Ear Biscuits fans at the office, which is fine by me – But, but it was firmly established that many of them were fans, so

– Well, but that doesn't mean you, I mean, if you're listening to Ear Biscuits that's a– – They're not a true fan like you – That's a special fan – You special listener – Just because somebody has seen an episode or two of Good Mythical Morning, I mean, who hasn't? Am I right, am I right? – And can't bring themselves to speak to you when they're doing a medical exam, like the nurse could Well, we don't need to rehash all that, I'm just sayin' odds were pretty high that someone there said hey, Doc, you should listen to him

– Yeah, I thought about that, so I was scanning everyone's face when I went back No indication that anyone had seen it, or if they had they were playin' it cool – Did you see the nurse who couldn't speak to you? – Yeah – Could she speak to you? – Interesting, so she – Interesting – She did not come in, a different one came in to do like my initial like evaluation, but then when the doctor came in, the same girl from before came in with him – Did she say anything this time? – The girl that won't see me by herself, the girl that will only see me with the doctor, she came back again She didn't say anything, she smiled a lot

– Oh my gosh – So, but here, this is basically what happened – So– – Did he get macho? – He was super cool, like honestly, he was like, he was super cool and super nice and like super understanding to the point that I thought that maybe he listened and he felt bad Like, but I also think that I was reading a lot into the last time – Maybe you feel bad – And it's all in my head

– Well, nothing else is all in your head, so how's your throat? – So, he looks at, or no so he comes in there, and he's like, okay And like, well I've still got this situation like, when I talk for a while, I mean it's happening right now We're just finished, you know talking to Matthew So it's like there's irritation, but it gets a little bit better everyday, like but you don't want to go five or six weeks with a throat problem Like, it just becomes annoying, right? So, I want it to get– – Definitely

– I want it to be over with, but it's not going away So, I was like, I'm still having the issue, but you know, it seems like it's getting a little bit better It's just not going away fast enough And, he's like, well I'm gonna take a look at your vocal chords – Which is what you wanted

You wanted definitive proof that there's not some like, nasty polyp, growth, fill in the blank, on your vocal chords So, you're getting what you want finally – Yeah, I want to know that like, because you know, if you do what I do, and you start reading things on the internet, which is almost always a mistake Especially as it relates to medical problems, you talk yourself into, well, I probably have some sort of irritation, that's gonna require vocal rest, or whatever, and so – Yeah

– So, he says, okay well, I'm going to look at your vocal chords, and I'm going to do, I'm just gonna use the scope I'm not gonna do the video scope No, video strobe, which is apparently this thing where, they bring a voice, like a voice therapist in, and he put, they put a strobe light basically on your vocal chords, and they have you do all these exercises and then they can analyze the vocal chords to make sure you're using them properly, so you're not doing things that induce damage – Hmm – And, he was like, all singers, and all voice professionals should really do this you know, to make sure you're using your voice, but we're not gonna do that today

You should come back for that what I'm gonna do today is I'm gonna use this little thing, Basically the thing that, that you had done in the plastic surgery video that we did – Did you gagalicious? – So, and I was like, listen, I have a horrible gag reflex He was like, well, I'm gonna do two things I'm gonna spray this thing in your nose that dead, let, like deadens the nose, and I'm going to spray this other thing that opens up the passages

– Yeah – And so he's like chh, chh, chh, chh And boy that was an odd feeling He left for about 10 or 15 minutes to let it completely set in and not being able to feel your nose and the back of your, like top of your throat, that's like a disconcerting feeling and I was like swallowing, and I couldn't feel myself swallowing, and then I was like, I'm just like sitting there in the doctor's office by myself, like – Like a clucking chicken? – Swallowing and– – Not the clucking chicken – Worrying about myself – Ba kaw! – And then he comes in and he's like, okay He looks up there and he's like, well first of all, you have a severely deviated septum, which I already knew

– But the scope, man, he throws in the scope – But, the things about the scope is that if your septum is deviated, it can be kind of difficult to get back there – You gotta power through it – But he was like, I'm gonna push on this thing, and he's like, don't worry it's not sharp But he's pushing on it, and he's like ernt, ernt, and it's hitting my nose, I'm going, (gagging) and then I can feel it get through my nose

– Eww, like an icepick? – And then I can feel it in the back of my throat and then I'm just sitting there going (gurgling) I sound like an alien – You made that noise? (gurgling) – And he's like, you're doing great I'm like, well I'd like to see the guy who's not doing great, because I do not feel great I do not feel as if I am coming across like I'm doing great right now

– And they're just taking selfies with you – Yeah, and but actually, I don't think I did that bad, because eventually– – Me neither – I quit making noises and was able to kind of go (fast breathing) and breath like that – Did you do that thing where you like raise one eyebrow? – I typically only do that in pictures And so I, so then he's like, okay and he, (whistles) pulls it out

It feels like somebody's just pulling something, and it's crazy how it feels – Like a worm – Yeah – Like a camera worm – It's like sometimes when like you were a kid and you'd sort of choke on a piece of spaghetti

– Yeah, and then you pull it out through your nose – And then you can like Nah, I never pulled it out through my nose

So, he says, well the good news is, no, he didn't say that He was just like, there's nothing wrong with your vocal chords He's like, they're inflamed, but there's not like damage, or a polyp, or a cyst, or something like that He's like, they're just inflamed, like it's still inflamed – What's the bad news? That's great, by the way

– I mean, the bad news is they're still inflamed So, I was like– – That he doesn't have a definitive answer for you – Might it be allergies? He was like, maybe, but then but that– – You said, might it be allergies? – Yeah, that's how, when I speak to medical professionals, I use very proper grammar so they'll respect me Might it be allegers, allergies Doctor? Might it be allergers? – Might it be allerg? – Allergers is the term that we use – I've been doing some thinking, might it be allergies? Doc, I got one question before I leave

Might it be allergies? – So he said, maybe, it might be Might it be – Might it be – But that didn't turn into, so I'm gonna give you some prescription medication which I don't want more medication

– It turned into, I'm gonna give you the bill now Let's wrap this up – I'm gonna charge you for this procedure I just did and you're gonna go back about your life And so, but – But are you? – I'm not, now my worry has shifted – Oh, yeah – You know? – It's like whack a mole! – I'm not like worried about vocal chord damage, I'm just worried about, well what is it that's causing this? Like, what is it really? – You're worried about me, aren't you? – Is it you causing it? – Just how I feel – Yeah

So, but I'm not that worried I'd say it's a pretty, it's a pretty– – You know it's nothing that's permanent or devastating – But no, it could be a systemic infection that's gonna kill me, but chances are pretty small that that's the case – But at least it's something for you to talk about – Yeah

– All right, success I'm glad, I mean, all you had to do was ask, man I could have told you this a couple of weeks ago Heh heh heh heh I, just try to find some peace of mind in it, okay? – No, no, I'm– – It's good news! – I'm tryin' man, that's why I went to the doctor

– But now, with what the doctor told you He found nothing devastating, so let's celebrate, by showin' some love to our sponsors – Yeah, let's do that (laughing) You can help pay for my upcoming medical bills by going to rhettandlinkcom/store and getting some Good Mythical merch

– Because we're sponsoring ourselves – That's right Good Mythical Morning, original old school classic, that's the word I'm looking for, classic merch is available ^rhettanlidnkcom/store, only 40 percent off Now if I said only 40 percent that would be 60 percent off, but it's 40 percent off

40 percent off until it's gone We got the original GMM shirt – This is like legacy merch, guys – That's a child size right there – If you want yourself a Good Mythical logo shirt, get it while the gettin's good

Rhettanlindkcom/store Hoodies – Hoodies When we see you with it, we'll know that you were there before it all changed

– Wow – Mm-hmm I am happy for, I know I've been giving you a hard time about your medical condition but I didn't just put in air quotes, but I'm glad – You wait until you have a problem, man

You wait til you have a problem – That's the thing, I'm not waiting – See if I come around – Well, you're helpful because you'll like Google it for me You'll figure it out

You'll run all the numbers for me So, what I'm trying to say is, I know I've given you a hard time, but I'm glad that you don't have anything because I would feel really bad if you had something – But I don't think you're, I don't think we're on the same page – You still feel bad, but you don't have anything You don't have throat cancer, man

– But how could you, but how can you, if you feel bad, you have something – A cold! – It's probably nothing serious – You have an elongated cold – Colds don't last six weeks – Where you goin' now? Who are you gonna see now? – I'm not going anywhere, I'm gonna stay right here

(upbeat music) – I want to explain what Matthew does for us as a member of the Mythical crew for people who don't understand Matthew, thank you for joining us here You are a solo adventurist and we didn't even know it, so we're gonna talk about that, but – I'm interested in having you explain that – What? – What Matthew does I'd like to see your perspective – Yeah, me too actually, I'm very interested – Are both of you trying to say I don't know what Matthew does here– – No, no

– At Mythical entertainment? – I send you notes all the time on stuff that you do, like I know it's centered, but can you make it look more centered by uncentering this? – Mm hmm – So a lot of graphics work Very excited about the branding and rebranding of lots of things The inventor of logos – Mm hmm

– So, anything that's graphical that, I would, not every single thing we do that's graphical – Correct – But a lot of graphic design is to your credit, sir – Thank you, I would say– – Lots of logo work for Mythical This is mythical

– Mm-hmm – And merch, merch that people don't even know exists yet, has logoing that you've invented – That's pretty spot on How do you think he did, Rhett? – (clears throat) He did, he, I feel like you missed a pretty big thing, which is– – You do other things too, I'm leaving that to Rhett I know he does other things, like what, Rhett? – The massaging

(laughter) – Is he not massaging? – Oh yeah, he's the– – Is he not massaging you? – He's the masseuse – Every Friday – Man! – Is that just me? – Matthew? Why don't you speak up about the masseuse-ing you've been doing, discriminately – Well, the other thing that goes into what I do as well, is I actually do the photography here So even today, we were doing a big photo shoot for new merch that's coming out and we've gotten to the point where I've done this enough, where Rhett's hair is out of place and I was like, I'm just gonna do it and I went in there

– Yeah, he did – Just got all up in there – But I was watching this happen – In my mind, that was a massage – And it made it, that massage made his hair worse

– Yeah, I realized I wasn't good at it and immediately stopped – But then Rhett had to use the mirror function on his phone – I had a weird hair day, so I appreciate it The other thing that, you may have mentioned this in passing, but I mean anything that moves on the screen of Good Mythical Morning– – I did not mention that yet – That is not us, he's responsible for

– Motion graphics, so you design graphics and then you put them in motion – Yeah, the way I describe it to anyone else that tells me, oh, what's your job, what do you do? I say, you know when words move on TV in like movies and stuff? That's what I do 'Cause whenever you say graphics or text, people don't exactly imagine– (barking) Perfectly picture it (chuckles) – That was a dog – I don't know what Jade's barking at

– I know, she's agreeing with me I think – I'm gonna snap at her and then nothing's gonna happen – But yeah, when you say graphics or even titles, people aren't exactly picturing, but when I just say words, when they move, people are like, oh yeah, I've seen words move – And words move quite a bit around here, more and more all the time thanks to you – (laughs) Exactly

– I love it when words move, I love it when logos come together Another thing that we love is the idea, I'm transitioning here, to the idea of going somewhere solo, like solo adventuring, and that's what we're gonna talk to you about – We like it so much that we made it a chapter in the Book of Mythicality So, again, Rhett and Link's Book of Mythicality, the book that we have coming out in October, is all about what mythicality is, and you know, a combination of curiosity, creativity, and tom foolery is what it is, but we talk about how we've experienced that in our lives and how we try to pursue it, and we've you know– – Through 20 tenets – And Mythicality is not limited to the 20 tenets of Mythicality that are in the Book of Mythicality, but they are at least equal, they at least include that

So, in one of those is a chapter, each chapter is a tenant of mythicality and one of those chapters is Isolate Yourself, With Yourself where we talk about times that we have personally attempted to isolate ourselves, to find time alone, how important it is to us both in the past and now, because we do think that, especially as we've gotten busier and busier as the years have gone by, there's a lot of things going on, not just in our business lives, but also the fact that we've got families, so you're kind of always around people and then when we're not always around our families, we're always around each other You should begin to value that time to yourself – And in that chapter we trace, have you read the chapter? You've seen the book in its, in its– – I've seen various pieces I've never really fully seen it – Okay, well, it will be required reading at some point, not yet, because it's not officially published yet, but get on that train quick, buddy, because ha, it's leaving the station

– I mean, I helped kinda build the train a little bit, so I would want to get on that train – Your name's in the credits – Mm-hmm – You graphically designed some of the stuff in there – Yeah

– But we give background about how over our entire lives, we've been anti isolated So, we don't have to go into all those details here, but it brings us to a point where just a few days ago, where we heard, we were talking with Cody and Jacob, who help produce Ear Biscuits, and they just mentioned offhand, that oh, Matthew went to Iceland by himself on a trip over the summer And we're like, what, I'm so jealous! – And one of the things that we want to do on Ear Biscuits is talk to mythical people about mythical things that they have done and are doing, and so when we found out that you had manifested a tenant of mythicality very recently in your life, we were like, let's have an Ear Biscuit about that That brings us to this point – But I should have said you can pre-order the book at bookofmythicality

com, ha! You could have said that, Matthew – Yeah, I could've, and I didn't – I'll say it a few times, bookofmythicalitycom – See what it feels like for you

– Bookofmythicalitycom – Bookofmythicalitycom – There's really no excuse– – That feels great

– Not to just visit the website – So, I mean, how does one decide to be a solo adventurer? I know you have friends This is not, this is not gonna be a sob story – I'm glad you know I have friends, that's good too I don't know, I think it's just that– – I've been watching you and your friendships

Ha ha ha, oh no – I think it was like a slow accumulation It was kinda, I think it goes into that bucket list category in life You know, where you always think about these things, or like, oh I wanna do that some day, and I think it was that for a majority of my life, until the first time I traveled alone, which wasn't Iceland actually I've traveled alone internationally one more time before

I actually went to Japan alone for two weeks – Oh my – Oh So, which one should we talk about first? – Um– – It's up to you – I mean, I like to work chronologically and I think it kind of influences kind of why I did Iceland

– Oh, let's do that then – Yeah But, even before that– – Yeah – So, are you saying the bucket list item, yeah before that, leading up to that was, I wanna go to Japan– – No I'm saying before that – Or I want to travel alone? – I'm like, how do you become a person who knows that they can travel alone or should travel alone? I think everybody should, but not everybody does

So, you have to have, there's something that has to click at some point – Yeah, that's a good point I think it was, it's kinda like anything else in life, and I've tried to apply this to everything else in my life, that like so many things seem, that you've never done before seem hard or difficult or oh, only certain– – Scary – Yeah Only certain people can do this

Yeah, I know someone has traveled alone and done this before, but they're more brave or crazy, whatever you want to apply to them, no matter what it is, but I think it was a combo of things I actually have a close friend who traveled alone Like, he actually skipped college, took a bunch of years off after high school and traveled central America alone, traveled around Israel and the Middle East alone, traveled India alone That was definitely a big factor for me, was you know, I went to college, and we stayed in touch and what not, so I kind of followed his journey alone through the world, and that made like that item on my bucket list just get bigger and bigger and bigger It's like, ah I have to do that, I have to try this

I have to try this sometime – Yeah, I knew people that got married and had kids, and it sounds like a joke, but especially the kids part, like it, in hanging out with people with kids, it's like oh, I get, I think I could, I think Kristi and I, we could have kids, Like I know– – That's how it happened with you? I believe we may have children – I remember hanging out with people with kids, and I was like, they're doing it This is what it's like, and it's, they can do it – Mm-hmm

– Maybe I can do it We should give it a shot We shouldn't wait until we feel like we've got it figured all out to have a kid But I never met anyone who traveled anywhere solo, so I never thought I could do that too – Mm-hmm, boy life could have been so different

– But you had a friend – Yeah, so I think that was one factor right there, but then the other factor was I did get to travel a good amount with my family as I was growing up I went on a lot of trips with my brother, my sister, and my dad especially But those were, you know, family trips, whether they were a road trip down to Florida or flying to San Francisco to visit an aunt, and it was always a family trip led by my dad, which I will say my dad is one of the best travelers I know in life, period He's very organized, he's very pro-itinerary, or at least when he was traveling around with us, all under the age of like 15, like he kind of had to be on top of everything, and he always seemed to know exactly what we were doing, what we were going to do next, which is always keeping a time schedule for things

– Was his name Rick Steves? – No, just Michael Dwyer, but close enough – You know who Rick Steves is? – Rick Steves Europe, one of my favorite shows – He's a traveler man – Yeah – He likes to over enunciate things

– I wouldn't want him to be my dad though – Yeah, the socks and the sandals wouldn't have worked – Yeah – But yeah, so– – Did your dad wear socks with sandals, like Tevas? – No, no – Oh

– Ain't no self respecting person does that – He was an itinerary man and he was a sock-less Teva wearing traveler – Exactly – Or did he wear like chacos? – What are chacos? – Chacos are my mispronunciation inevitably, of those fancier Tevas, that have more straps – I don't go down that aisle, bro

– Oh, we're talking about the sandals that aren't flip flops that have the multiple straps – Strappy, strappy, strappy – Yes, he wears those, but no socks, no socks – Oh cool, go ahead (laughing) – Now that we have your dad's feet pictured

– Anyway, all of my experiences with travel before were with my family, which I love and everything, but I think the number one thing I associate with it was lack of control, I think it's the best way to describe was I like I was being brought to these places that I wasn't necessarily choosing to go, and I think that was one of those things that I just always thought about I was like oh, I wanna be able to go on a trip, but I'm in charge, and see what that's like – Without my family or anybody else – Yes – No companions

– Mm hmm – Well that is, I mean, being in control and then going companionless, going solo, that's still a bit of a leap Did it take more than just the guy who did it to say, um that thought is now in my head – I think the main time where I like made the hard decision and like went online, bought plane tickets was actually, it was 2014, and I had already decided I was gonna move to Los Angeles At the time I was living where I grew up and where I was living, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

I'd already made the decision I was gonna move to LA and I'd been saving up for well over a year And, I kind of realized, I had saved up more than I had planned, and then also realized like, oh I could go on that trip LIke, I have enough money that I could budget out a trip And, I especially knew the second I moved to Los Angeles, that like I wouldn't– – Yeah – I wouldn't think to travel outside of the country alone while I was living in Los Angeles trying to find a job

So, and I had already had– – So, you had some money stashed away You had a window of time, and there was kind of a, okay, so I also see there's a little bit of a clean break When you moveD from Milwaukee to LA, was that just you? Did you even know anybody out here? – I knew three people, maybe? – That would be out here, but you didn't move out with 'em – No – Mm-hmm

Okay – And so that was the thing I already knew I was gonna move out alone I already knew I wanted to live alone in LA And so, it was kind of– – I don't think anybody can do that

Nobody can afford to live alone in LA – I mean, spoiler alert, I have a roommate now – Okay (laughter) – But, and that was my plan, and I think it was a culmination of those like big life choices, where I was like, I'm gonna move halfway across the country already You know like, almost kind of wanted to kind of prepare

And as like, okay and I'm gonna travel alone – So it wasn't like you were moving to LA and you just severely overshot it and ended up in Japan for two weeks? – Well, 'cause I also realized if I was gonna buy, excuse me, if I was gonna buy plane tickets to LA to find an apartment anyway, I could actually save money on a ticket technically if I flew to Japan, stayed in Japan for two weeks, then flew from Tokyo to LA, stayed in LA for a week to find my apartment and then flew back to Milwaukee to then drive back to LA to move – So it was like all part of a round trip with a long delay, a long layover? – Yeah, exactly (laughs) – Which explains why you had more money you didn't know about, 'cause you got this financial thing figured out – I know exactly, I was like technically I'm saving

That was the excuse I tried to sell people on – Is that why you chose Japan? 'Cause it worked out in the LA route or was there something specific about Japan that you'd always wanted to experience? – I, for a good portion of my life, have been interested in Japan I would say probably the seed of that kinda goes to my childhood of Pokemon and getting into anime – Mmhmm – Yeah

– So that was definitely a very good gateway into Japan and learning about Japan It's kinda just over time from that since I was nine of learning more and more about Japan outside of even just pop culture that I just got more and more interested in it I did start with the basic thing of I want to travel outside, outside of the country alone Where do I want to go to do that for the first time? I literally, I think I did open up Google Maps, and then just, I looked at the map of the world I zoomed all the way out and I was just like, where do I want to go? – You did a POV satellite

– I didn't do– – Like, wish list – Basically, I didn't do Google Earth I didn't get out too far, I just– – You didn't become an astronaut for this decision making process

– Yeah, I looked at the map and– – This is a mythical thing to do – Yeah, it really is, yeah – You opened Google Maps and just zoomed out as far as it would go – Exactly – I've never done that

– You threw a dart – What, something I absolutely love to do, and I've never taken action on this is, anybody who's ever had a globe has done that thing where you spin the globe and like, I'm gonna close my eyes and then I'm gonna put my finger on the globe and wherever I land, I'm gonna go (laughing) – Yup – Water – I'm goin' in the ocean a lot

But the idea that you did it with an intention to follow through – And it was about, even the whole process was, well it was about the process It was about the journey, not the destination 'cause you didn't have it yet You were like I'm gonna go somewhere I'm gonna go alone

I know how I'm gonna do something, but I don't yet know what it is – Mmhmm – Which is actually another chapter we talk about in the book You probably don't need to even read it (laughter) bookofmythicality

com – You gotta quit selling this book, man Just read the book, just read the book – But it is very mythical and it's, so you zoomed out – Mm hmm – And you saw Japan

– I did a general scan and honestly, I think one of the first things that popped out to me was Japan It was kinda one of those things where, almost first idea, best idea where it was just like, I couldn't get it out of my head I kept on looking around I kept on hemming and hawing I almost tried to think about continents too, where I was like, okay, well, nowhere in North America or even South America, 'cause that's basically part of North America

So like, let's really go for it Let's go for it – Go tall – I had actually been outside the country before, again on another family trip with my dad where we went to Ireland So then I kind of canceled, I was like, okay then no Europe, technically, like, where have I, farthest away I've been? – Been there, done that continent

– Yeah, and I think it, yeah, all signs just pointed to Japan And it made me immediately excited and that's really just how I knew – And then when you, so you timed it with moving to LA And then, but when you got there, did you have a dad-like itinerary? And more importantly, I'm curious, how much did you talk? Because the way that I think about solo trips is that they're like silent retreats where you find yourself not talking to anyone except when making, like, some sort of exchange – Mmhmm

Yeah, that's one of the first questions a lot of people ask, especially depending on where you're going So far, I would say Iceland and Japan have it in common where it's pretty easy to travel when you're only an English speaker In Iceland, actually, even easier than Japan, probably But for the most part, a lot of major signs are in what you imagine when you imagine Japanese and the Japanese characters, but then there's also Roman letters basically It's, so, phonetically written out, the Japanese words, and so you can actually read it

– But not necessarily English? What do you mean Roman letters, but not English? – They're phonetically written out – So Roman letters, A, B, C, D, E, F, G – It's not an English word? What? – But you can say it – That's why I say Roman letters – You could pronounce it

– You can pronounce it by phonetically – And then somebody would know what you were talking about – Oh – It's like using English to tell you how to speak Japanese – But, for most words, that works

However, the neighborhood where I stayed the first night, did not apply to that rule (laughing) This is probably a good example Literally, I land in Japan, it's over, I can't even remember anymore, but it was like a 12 to 14 hour flight I land in Japan and I did have a plan for the most part I did try to be really prepared

I booked ahead of time where I was staying, where I stayed in hostels, which is the affordable way to travel on a budget – Which means you share restrooms with strangers and sometimes you share cots with strangers – Usually it's not cots It's maybe like a bunk bed scenario, but usually you keep to your own bunk – That's, okay

– Unless, you know– – What kinda movies you been watching? – I think, yeah, if anything, maybe there's some consensual sharing, but other than that, it's, you know, you get assigned – You get your own bed – That's considerate – Yeah, basically, you're in kind of in like– – Doesn't sound hostile at all (fake chuckling) – You're basically in larger size dorm rooms that usually are at least six bunk beds and then yeah, it's a communal bathroom with you know, a bunch of sinks, bunch of showers

– Okay – So I knew– – But you were phonetically sounding out signs and it didn't work out? – Yeah, so the neighborhood and also the name of my hostel had the name of the neighborhood which was, I'll just say what it was spelled So it was A-S-A-K-U-S-A How would you pronounce that? – A-S-A-K? – Asa-koosa – So I pronounced it and thought it was pronounced like how Rhett just say it, Asa-koosa, 'cause I was just looking at it phonetically and I had actually been trying to learn some basic Japanese, like hello, excuse me, you know

– That's my bunk, not yours – I didn't think to do that one, I didn't get that far – We're in my bunk

With me – Where I thought that, where I thought, like I could pronounce, if I saw a word, I'd be able to read it and relatively pronounce it correctly, I thought But I got in from the airport to one of the main train stations in Japan, I'm sorry, in Tokyo, but it's a big train station It's one of those things where there's a bunch of turnstiles in different parts of the building, and I'm not sure how to get to the next train to take me to my hostel – So are you using, I mean, this is 2014 right? – This is 2014

– So – I have a smartphone – Right, so one of the things that we noticed in our recent trip to New York, is that we haven't really been to New York and navigated on our own in a number of years

Like, we've been going for work, and it's like you're in a car and somebody else is worrying about where you're gonna be But the last time I actually went to New York and navigated the subway system and all that was '99 – By printed map, not by Google App – Yeah, and you had the map in your pocket But now, with the smart phone it was like, I wasn't thinking about anything

So how does that translate to Tokyo? – That's the thing again, where like, at times, especially in these scenarios, it feels like a cheat code, where a lot of problems can easily be answered by the smart phone Google Maps is really great It translates everything so it shows everything in the English version But it's smart 'cause it hooks up to the public transit system, just like in New York City It shows the name of lines, does like colored icons to show you the different lines and what not, but it's still, I think it's still like this, where it doesn't say breakdown of like, oh there's multiple floors to this station and here's how you get to that line

All I knew was I was in the right building, but I didn't know where the hell in the building to go – Where is Asa-koosa? – Asak-usa – So I went to one of the help desks and I still was speaking English because everyone at those help desks, and especially anyone of authority that you really need to talk to most likely at least knows a little bit of English, if not is pretty fluent It was funny because immediately the second I said it, they looked at me like I was crazy and so all of a sudden I just knew I was second guessing everything I had done where I was like, did I write it down wrong? Am I actually, what did I do wrong? Until finally the person that was helping me realized and was like, ohh, A-sock-sa? A-sock-sa

– A-sock-sa – I was like, yes? And then explained to me like, oh you have to go through multiple turnstiles, where I thought like I would be double charged to go through that I was afraid to leave, but I had to go through a couple turnstiles to then go down to another floor to get on the train I had to get to Finally got to my hostel after, I think it had been a full 20 hours from Houston airport to Tokyo to my actual hostel was like maybe almost 20 hours and I was just like spent Then I walk in and you know, it's maybe, I think it was almost 11 or midnight

But there's someone behind the desk and they check me in and they immediately ask, like, oh do you want some tea? And they literally give me a nice cup of iced green tea and I take a sip and I swear to you, it was one of the best green teas I've ever had (laughing) And like everything immediately, all the stress of travel melted away, and got that confidence boost – You'll never have a green tea that good again – Yeah and then almost immediately went to my room and passed out – Now were the people– – But was Asa-koosa, did that actually mean something nasty? – Yeah, that's the moral of the story

– That's what I thought was gonna happen – He didn't know how to pronounce it – I still haven't figured out how to do that, to see if that works – What kind of people are in these hostels? Are we talking mostly Westerners that are traveling around? – I mean, that is a good chunk I would say in Japan there were a fair amount of people from China or Taiwan, too

– Okay – But I would say it's predominantly Westerners, whether it's the US or Canada, or you know UK, parts of Europe – Other people by themselves too? – I'm trying to think if I actually met, yeah I did meet a couple of people who were traveling alone – Okay, good Lots of people traveling together

– Now but, my question about talking to people was not actually about the language barrier, it was about literally socially connecting with people Do you consider yourself an introvert, extrovert? Where are you on the scale? If you're in a hostel situation, are you like talking to people and making friends or is your goal to kind of be a monk? Like with a vow of silence and you're experiencing Japan on mute – I really took it day to day, and I think that goes again to the idea of, because I'm traveling alone, I can do whatever I want, talk to whoever I want, not talk to whoever I want – Are you an introvert or extrovert, what would you say? – And I think that definitely leans more towards an introvert, if I really had to choose between the two I think that's what's nice is at least, if I feel comfortable enough, then, you know, I can be more extroverted, but I think that's what was nice about the hostels were you can usually kinda tell by the second you walk into your dorm and say someone's already there, whether or not they're in the mood to talk or chat, just by whether or not they even say hello to you, or it's just like a head nod

– Kinda like when I sit down in a hairstylist's chair and I immediately just close my eyes – You're like, that's the cue, that I do not want to interact with you right now – I think that's probably actually the best analogy, is it's when you go into a new barber especially Within the first two seconds, you both agree whether or not you're gonna have a conversation – I do this weird thing where I talk to them for seven minutes and then the eyes close

I talk to 'em, I have the friendlies, then I'm like– – That's all I got, that's all I want – Next time I gotta try just closing my eyes and see what happens – Do you have like a, I'm trying to picture you Do you have a backpack on? – Well, he's right there – And like, what is your outfit? You got like a tracksuit? You got like travel clothes? – I definitely picture you in a tracksuit

– Well, you would have to picture me without facial hair, 'cause this is before facial hair – Okay, got it – But I packed relatively light – You couldn't grow facial hair, three years ago? – Well, at the end of the trip, I did (laughing) I'm trying to think

I packed like pants, one pair of shorts, and maybe, I think at most, I did maybe like five shirts, but it was meant to be like layers A couple tee shirts and I got one shirt from REI – One of those breathable ones – One of those breathable ones, but at first glance you wouldn't think of like, oh that's like one of those squishy sound-ey material like things It looks like a normal collared shirt for the most part

– Oh, I know what you mean – But it's got those cool side roll ups– – Vents – Oh you're talking' about like a fly fisherman shirt! (laughter) You were dressed, you wore a fly– – Man, this is like, no, this is like– – Have you been to REI? – A legit camping shirt – I would never go to REI – It's like a cool, hiking, I've almost gotten one like 700 times

– I'd feel too guilty for never hiking or doing anything REI-ish – I still continue to wear this shirt around, when I'm not traveling – Oh I've seen it and I didn't even notice – Exactly – Okay, alright then

Okay, that's cool – What about the pants? Do you have zip offs? – No, I didn't go that far I had one pair of shorts and one pair of jeans – But you can get one pair that's both of 'em at REI – Zip off at the knees? – Yeah man, I want some of those, too

I wore those in (mumbles) season, season one I think I still got them around here, but I don't do stuff that needs it – The last time I wore zip off pants was, I was like 10 years old – Ha ha ha, they're glorious, man, the life – I don't know if I can go back

– They are versatile, I don't know if they're glorious – Okay, so you're dressed, you're pretty legit You're dressed pretty legit, not a lot of clothes So, like what's a typical day? – A typical day Again, I think how I planned my trip was not much of an itinerary of like, oh I have to be here at noon, because I have to be at this place at 4:00 pm right on the dot I treated it more as like I made a list of just like, top things

Let's see if I can do these things today, and just like in order of importance, where like, I absolutely wanna to do this one thing today I wanna make sure I do that, but then a couple other ideas, and then just structure the day out that way So, I think the first day I went to Akihabara which is just a neighborhood that's just very well known for its like video games stores and video arcades So it's like classic of what you kind of imagine with Tokyo, which is like super tall buildings, and like tons of people on the sidewalks, crossing streets, just like people everywhere – Entertainment overload? – Yeah

So I went there first I went there first and you know, walked around, went into stores, went into an arcades, played some games It was kind of hard to play the games because again, not a lot of English in the actual games, but I was able to like put money in, hit start and play, and know that I lost So – Which is the point – Exactly Yeah, I did that and like wandered, and purposefully like wandered around 'cause that's like a thing that I really love about traveling and being in a new place, is like putting that time in to wander and to like explore – Just walk around and find yourself somewhere

– Yeah, exactly – What was the best Japanese experience and the worst? Like, was there a worse thing, like did you get mugged? And what was the best thing, did you like get married? – I'll have to think on the worst thing, because I might, it might be just like the first experience of like trying to find my hostel that first night – That's great if you don't have any, that's – Best, that's really hard to say It's a combo of a lot of things I think the number one thing I always talk about with Japan is definitely the food – Yeah – God, like I was going through my photos

– Everywhere, or one place? – Everywhere, everywhere Like, I was going through my photos to prepare for this, to you know, refresh my memory I have so many photos of just like food in my hand, 'cause I was like, while I was eating I was like I wanna remember this! – Now, are you a natural adventurous eater? – I have as I've grown, as I've gotten older – 'Cause you can't go, you can't go to Japan and be like, I don't like fish, man, I'm not really into fish – Yeah

– I don't do fish – Yeah, and I already like, really like Japanese food in general, but I think one of the things that really stuck out to me was, I finally Googled it to figure out what it was actually called, 'cause I couldn't remember I walked up to this stall that was outside this temple near my hostel, and they had these fry, these things, these fried crispy things that had delicious filling in them, and like, that's what they were in my head the entire time, until I finally like figured out what they were called, is they're called aukumangu, which is basically like steamed buns, if you've had those before which is you know, a bread, with you know, round roll size, with like smooth sweet fillings in it, or different savory fillings, but then it was dipped in tempura batter and fried – Sounds like the NC State Fair – That was like, that was my breakfast almost like my entire first week in Tokyo, was like, I would go to that stall and I got like a bunch of different flavors

Like, they had green tea flavored They even flavored the breading, too, like the tempura batter was matcha flavored along with the filling inside Like, and they had sweet potato flavor, like yam flavor They had black sesame flavor That's one of the things I remember the most of all, like I got that a bunch

– When, um, so you were there for two weeks? – I was there two weeks – The closest I have to like a solo adventure is, one summer, I think you were, this was in college, I went to Nashville to visit our friend Josh I think you were in Slovakia that summer and I was at, taking summer classes And, I took one week and went to Nashville to visit him, but he was working So, every day during the week, he gave me his car and I just, so for that eight hours he was working, I was just going around Nashville all alone

And, it was the first time that, maybe the only time that I've had like that much time to myself And, I was really excited at first, and I went to– – At first – I went to the Country Music Hall of Fame – Well, yeah, who's not excited? – And I walked around like slow paced Like no one's rushing me anyway

– Like reading all the plaques – I read, I can read every plaque! And then after awhile, I was like– – That's Patty Lovelace's boots – I don't need to read every plaque I'm reading about Patty Lovelace's boots right now I don't, I'm not a Patty Lovelace fan

– Just the third pair of Patty Lovelace boots that I've checked out since we got here – I went outside, and I had a pack with some water in it, of course – Gotta stay hydrated – And I remember I would, I sat outside the museum and then I, a few minutes later I laid down and I went to sleep – Like on a bench? – In the museum? – No, outside in like, I would call it a park

– Okay – Like trees outside of the museum, I took a nap – Like on a guitar bench? – And then I got up and I'm like walking around, and driving around, and then the next day, you know, I'm hanging out with Josh and the next day I go into town, to Nashville, and I'm like on Music Row I'm like, I've heard about Music Row, where all the, the Nashville sound– – I'm gonna take my water down to Music Row and just drink it – And yeah, so here I am just drinking water, walking down Music Row, and I you know, found a little, a little park to sit down for a few minutes, and then I laid down

And then– – There's lots of sleeping – I went to sleep And I realized that I was becoming a homeless person in Nashville The third day– – That's how it begins, if you don't have, if you don't have a return trip planned – If I don't have an itinerary, I just start sleeping in public places

By the fifth day, the last day that Josh was at work, he had a pool at his house, I'm just gonna stay here at the pool – I'm gonna stay here actually, and sleep There's water and a place to sleep I got on a float in the middle of the pool, and I fell asleep, and I woke up with the worst sunburn you could ever imagine – You deserved every bit of it, man

– What a jerk You know, it's like, here I am, I could explore this whole city, and it's like, whoa, I'm tuckered out – I gotta go to the pool and float – I'm tuckered out I got so burnt, the next day we went hiking, and it was like my collar bones were so burned, that I couldn't swing my arms because it would hurt, and I was absolutely, bonafide, miserable

– You didn't know, you didn't know what to do – With myself – But it's a different time 'Cause that same summer I was in Slovakia, and you know most of I was over there with a lot of college students and our itinerary was pretty much figured out with what we were doing, right? But it's funny I hadn't even thought about this until right now, we're then talking about it in this context, but one of– – You fell asleep a lot? – I fell asleep in a pool We would have some days that we didn't have any responsibilities And, we were like teaching English for these Slovaks, and when we didn't have to do that, you could do whatever you wanted to, and my inclination was, I mean sometimes it would be like, there's a couple of people that I've kind of got to know a little bit better and I'll go do something with them, but my disposition was almost always to be like, I'm just going to go off by myself today And today's a free day, and I would just walk like the city So I'd be in like Kosice, Slovakia, and I would just walk around – Did you ever lay down and sleep? – Never

– When did you sleep? You're a human – Like I didn't, I can't sleep in, I can't barely sleep in a bed, man – I'm just wondering, can I clarify? You keep saying sleep Do you mean just sleep indeterminate amount? Or like nap, get in a quick 15? – It would easily be 45 minutes – Wow, okay

– Like, if a nap's worth taking, it's worth taking I take it all the way – But the inclination to just go off and be, but I still, I mean I was just kind of walking around I wasn't in Tokyo, that's for sure – Alright, you sent me a postcard from there and it was two polar bears mating

– Oh yeah, 'cause they do that That's how they make little polar bears I wanted you to understand how, what I was learning – I hope you just thought it was funny It was, wasn't it, you remember it

You remember it to this day – It was funny – Would it be better if they were sleeping? – Yeah, well they sleep after – Well, they sleep, yeah, I was like those polar bears sleep in a weird position, and then I turn it over and Rhett was like, Dear Link, let me tell you how little polar bears are made Flip over postcard

So, that was, so three years later, you take a solo trip to Iceland Was there a solo trip in between there or was it? – No – We've been working you so hard – Yeah, and – You haven't been able to get away – Well yeah, so three years after like what I would say is one of the best trips I've ever taken and it was alone, you know, I always kind of told in my head, I wanna, you know work hard enough to get to the point where like I can be able to do another trip like this And, I'd gotten to that point where I decided like, okay this summer while GMM is on hiatus, I'm gonna do another trip – A solo trip specifically? – A solo trip

Yeah, another solo trip – You knew, I'm saving up for a solo – Yeah – What was it, not specifically about Japan or, but the solo aspect was it like, I mean, obviously you know, and also three years later, three years older Life changes, you change as a person

Was there this, 'cause so many things would have to be worked out in my life personally for me to take a solo trip Like, I'd have to you know, that ain't gonna happen any time soon – Yeah – But it would be like, this is going to be like some sort of deeply contemplative experience if I were to like do this And so, like having done it once, did you approach it differently? And it was like, the purpose of it? – Well yeah like, because I had played with the idea of this trip, which what I thought was like say not the most planned out trip, not like the most like hard itinerary trip, that I felt like, I felt again, like oh maybe I wanna play with this more, and like leave, have even, have it be even more open and more free to like have time to do what I want, do whatever

And, because I did really enjoy the experience of traveling alone, 'cause it goes back to all those things of control Like, I did whatever I wanted, ate wherever I want, and I think it was that same idea where like, and there's no necessarily worries about like what's goin' on back home or whatever, or anything like that It's about being present for a specific amount of time And so yeah, I wanted to do that again, and I knew I wanted to do another international trip I mean, I'll be honest like, it's really hard for me to just not go back to Japan

Like, every time I think about doing travel, I think I could just go back to Japan And like, 'cause I still barely saw, like I don't know Like, I saw a small percentage of the country Like, I stayed in Tokyo for one week, and Kyoto for another week and did kind of day trips, taking the train a little bit outside of those areas, but for the most part I was in central Japan Like, I didn't see any of the south or the north

And so like, there's plenty more I could have seen, and like, I'm still kind of trying to force myself, like no, part of it too, is to also experience something new every time, like I'm taking that time out I want to do that opportunity to do something new And so, part of then why I picked, then picked Iceland, was because usually, I realized like when I think about traveling, like I always think more about cities and stuff Like, I'm always first to think of like, it'd be really cool to go to Hong Kong, or it'd be cool to go to Berlin Like, I don't think like oh, it'd be cool to go to China

It'd be cool to go to Germany I think more like in city terms So, I realized like Iceland would be a good opportunity to once again push me out of my comfort zone of like, oh this is a trip where you're not, it's kind of weird to like stay in Reykjavik for a week and not go outside the city limits of Reykjavik, which is a pretty small city, when like there's so much like just nature to see in Iceland I think that's probably the biggest number one attractive thing for that country is the beautiful, like natural splendor – But it's a stark contrast to the populous of Tokyo

– Yes – So was that another factor? Was, now I'm going solo to somewhere where I could actually stay solo? – Yeah, like where I could literally be at the edge of like a waterfall and just be – Be the only one

– Yeah, which I had imagined in my head and thought was a possibility Once I got there, a little less likely – Okay – Because tourism in Iceland, in the last five years especially, has just like exploded It's, a population of maybe 300,000, and now they see about two million tourists a year

– Okay, wow – Which is insane, because it's become very popular for I think a lot of reasons I think partially because it's so beautiful– – Well, that Ben Stiller movie – Ben Stiller movie – What was that movie? He skateboarded

– Walter Mitty – Was it Walter Mitty? – Walter Mitty skateboarded across Iceland – Mm-hmm – Mm-hmm – I think I did see that

That movie came out around the time that I went to go to Japan actually, now that I'm thinking about it, but, and also Game of Thrones, I think is like they film a lot of locations there But yeah, the main attractive thing to me was like okay, this trip forces me to go outside my comfort zone and go out into nature And so, I planned out my trip where I got tickets, and I rented a car and I drove around, say like a third or half of the country in a week – In one week – In one week

– And what, were there hostels? Were you, what was the main thing you were doing? Seeing sites, hiking? Just trying to survive in the icy depths of, I don't know – All of the above I mainly stayed in hostels, and one night I stayed at an Airbnb I thought I was going to do a decent amount of hiking, but kind of how my trip went, canceled that fact For whatever reason, my first 24 hours in the country like really say a lot about the trip

So, I landed in Iceland and stayed in Reykjavik that night I kind of you know, wandered around the city for the most part that night And then the next morning I was driving probably the longest distance, three or four hours to my Airbnb I was staying at that night And I was maybe And, my second day I was maybe, barely 20 minutes outside of Reykjavik, and I, kind of how Iceland is laid out, there's what's called the Ring Road, which is basically only like two lanes, but it goes around the entire island And it, but it's not like normal, like American highways where you know, there's maybe some curves, but you know stuff can be straight It's all like windy and curvy, and but then there's just beautiful things at like every turn you make And, I pulled over 'cause I had seen a beautiful mountain and I was like, ah I gotta take a photo in front of this

I pulled over to the side of the road and I did a very touristy thing where I was trying to take a photo of myself and I fell into a ditch – Ha ha ha! You were taking a selfie – Basically, yeah – Like a big ditch – A big enough ditch where– – Was this a fjord? – Technically not

– I don't think that's there – No, oh no, there's fjords – There are fjords? – Oh yeah, there's plenty of fjords – That's right, Rhett – Where I thought– – It's also greener than Greenland, so take a bite out of that one

– I do know that – It's very green But, I fell into this very green ditch – How deep was this ditch? What happened? – It was at least four feet maybe five feet – Oh my goodness

– Was there ice in the bottom? – No – What happened? Did you die? – So I hurt my ankle like where I climbed out of the ditch– – I'm sorry I'm laughing at you – I laughed at myself, it's So I got out It was painful getting out, both to my pride and my ankle, and so I'm standing up and I'm out of the ditch, and I realize when I put weight on my ankle, it hurts So I'm like, ah crap I mean, I'll just get in the car I'm getting in the car and sitting, I can put some weight off of it

It'll probably be fine – Ooo – I get back in the car and I start driving But then as I'm sitting with no weight on my foot, it starts to hurt And every mile I'm driving, it just hurts more and more and more

– Is it your gas foot? – No Luckily it was my left foot I kept trying to pull over because there's a lot of spots, especially along the Ring Road, to pull over and take photos of just beautiful landscapes It's not like rest areas in America where like, oh, there's bathrooms and picnic tables and stuff For the most part, most of them are like, maybe a miniature parking lot that can fit like five-ish cars and maybe a picnic bench and maybe a sign explaining that area, but other than that, that's it

There were so many with so many beautiful spots, I slowly had to just keep on driving past all of them because I got to the point where I was like, I need ice I'm in Iceland, my ankle hurts– – I need ice! – Ice in the land of ice – My ankle hurts, and I need ice – Wish I was in Greenland (laughter) – So I pulled over, pulled out my phone

– Geography humor – And I tried to find the nearest what seemed like, okay, this is a big gas station, they should have everything I could possibly need, you know? Whether it's bandage wrap or something or just aspirin, something So I pull over and I get out of the car for the first time in maybe two hours – Ooh – Ooh, stiff

– I'm immediately limping – You swol, man – And I looked at my ankle for the first time too, with my sock off and my ankle had swollen up And I literally hobbled into this gas station and immediately realized the biggest irony of Iceland It's really hard to get ice in Iceland

– There's no ice in the convenience store? – There was no ice They had every possible bottled drink and stuff, but there was no ice No ice packs, no nothing It was still like a convenience store where they had other stuff like car fresheners and stuff like that, but their medical medicine aisle was basically toothbrushes, toothpaste, and feminine hygiene products, that was it – You could freeze that

– Now– – What did you use? – Could you, does the clerk speak English? – They do – Okay – And I asked, do you have ice packs? It was a bit of a surly Icelandic teenager who was like oh no, sorry So I bought a water bottle and left Immediately started Googling pharmacies, found a pharmacy, drove to a pharmacy, and it was what I thought was, it was Iceland's main chain of pharmacies, their equivalent of like say Walgreens, and I walk in and it's laid out like what I would call more of like an old timey pharmacy where every single pill is behind the counter

Like every pill – But where's the ice? – I talked to the actual pharmacist in a white coat and I thought I was being so smart I was like, I'm not gonna say Tylenol, I'm not gonna say Advil, no brand names Aspirin Aspirin has to be like a universal one and I said I need aspirin

Looked at me like I was crazy Like, why could I possibly need aspirin? Even though I had limped into this pharmacy, maybe she thought I needed something better than aspirin, but finally she said like, oh aspirin? Okay, and pulled up a bottle and had a bottle of Icelandic aspirin, that all of the directions were in Icelandic, not English I take some, get back in my car Get to my Airbnb where I was renting a room in this woman's house And so, I pull up, she's out front, and I limp out of my car and explain I hurt my ankle, fell in a ditch, do you have ice? She didn't have ice

(laughing) – Of course not – She didn't have ice! – She didn't have ice – Where do you think you are? – I don't know where I thought I was, but she did not have ice Luckily the bar nearby her house had ice She went to go get me ice

I got set up in my room in her house, put my foot up with a bag of ice and about six Icelandic aspirin in my stomach and then just chilled out for the rest of the day I remember thinking, I really hope I don't have to actually go to the hospital I didn't think I broke it I really thought it would hurt more immediately if I broke it, but it was still unbearable pain where like, if I, I knew I couldn't walk more than a couple feet – That was a great start

– So that was the start of my trip That was within the first 48 hours of my trip, but then I got up the next morning and my ankle felt immediately better – Oh wow – Where I could put weight on it, I could actually ascend the stairs to get to the only bathroom in the house on my feet instead of going up step by step on my butt, which is what I had done the night before (laughing) – Who is this weird American? That is not how to go up the stairs

– That's not how we go up the stairs – But my host, Madara, god bless her She had breakfast out for me the next morning with a bunch of different jams and cheeses and stuff She made me tea Once again, I think the best way I know someone's a good tourist experience is when someone else makes you tea in another country

I don't know what it is about it – So then you were able to go from there and see a lot of Iceland which I'm sure was breathtaking – Yeah, and I got a lot of advice from my host about what to do and what to see, and the rest of the trip just got better and better My ankle got better and better and the trip got better and better – I think for the solo trips, I mean what was your expectation and then what was your takeaway in terms of, was there kind of a goal of was it just rest? Was there like an aspect of introspection to this? I mean, so as a person, did you come away as a better person? Or what's the takeaway? – I think that's why these two trips kinda go hand in hand, in that with Japan, part of what I went into it was hoping that it would help prove to me too that not only, okay if I can go to this foreign country for two weeks alone, I can move across the country and live in Los Angeles alone, was kind of the idea I kinda had in the back of my head

I came out of it feeling that confidence, like it was kind of a bit of a confidence boost of like, I was able to navigate this country, I can navigate this city And then when I went to Iceland, it made me think, like well, oh I've already got this one trip under my belt I can do this alone too I would say, while I loved my trip in Iceland, I think if I go back to Iceland, I will definitely have a copilot – Oh really? – Yes

Yes, absolutely because not just in scenarios where you, say sprain your ankle and you still have to drive yourself across the country, but there was a lot more times where, especially since a lot more of it is road trip focused, there were just times where I was like, man I really just want to stare out the window right now, and I can't I didn't have the control I wanted where like, I had to focus on driving I couldn't choose between the two Where, I think especially with the different types of things you do in Iceland, it makes sense to have some form of co-pilot

Also, I saw a lot of couples in Iceland and it hammered home way more than in Japan I saw, everybody was with somebody in Iceland – Okay, so is there an opening? Are you saying there's an opening for a companion to go back to Iceland with you? Is that what this is turning into? – Maybe (laughing) Guys I have to be honest with you, there's a reason I came on here today – But I mean, even those things being said, I mean, there's

Was it an enriching experience? – Absolutely – When you look at the two of them together and you say, okay, this is about me figuring out who I am and what I'm capable of and if I find myself in a ditch, am I gonna be able to get out of it? – Yeah – Metaphorically speaking of course

– Of course – That doesn't actually happen – Yeah, who would– – What kind of idiot would fall in a ditch? – Would you recommend solo adventuring in general, in terms of the building blocks of a person? – Yes, but that can be, solo adventuring can be anywhere though I don't think it's a caveat where like, oh everyone has to travel outside the country, because not everyone has that ability or that privilege to be able to do that, but I think for the most part, most adults have the ability to do something alone and do an adventure alone and I absolutely recommend it for anybody – It's not easy to do, man

I mean, even like I said, there's no Iceland or Japan trip in my near future alone, but I've told this story before and I tell this story in detail with pictures in The Book of Mythicality, about my intention to go off to Joshua tree by myself for just a weekend, and it's like it's, and kinda what I talk about this in the book is how with all my intention to like, be like, I know I don't get to do this every often I've got a weekend alone I'm going to like, set some goals for myself, and I wanna come away with some sort of like epiphany about something because I've got this time to myself, and then I basically just ended up taking a shirtless selfie of myself and posting it on Instagram (laughing) That's what that trip amounted to I didn't sprain my ankle, but I took a half naked selfie

Because I didn't go in with the right intentions – But you got a good story and a book! – I did, but I've actually thought about, it's funny 'cause, I don't know if I've been on edge lately or whatever, but Jessie the other day was like, you know I really feel like you might need to go away for a weekend by yourself again (laughter) I think, you know– – No comment – We've just been working so hard she's like, I think you know, I think you could probably use that You can use that again, but I don't have any specific plans to do that

But, I'm like, if I do it again, I have to go in with more intention, like I'm not gonna, I'm not gonna be on the internet I'm gonna take my phone because I might need my phone for– – Survival – Navigation purposes But like, I'm not gonna be on social media, and I'm not gonna be taking naked pictures of myself Well I might do that, but I'll keep them for myself

It will be for me, it won't be for the internet – Good – But – But, it's certainly I appreciate you sharing your experience with us, because, I mean it convinces us even more of what a mythical idea it is to do that So I, you know, I'll, I think I will always remember the imagery of you pulling up the Google Map and then deciding, alright, I've decided to do something in spite of fears, questions, preconceived notions

And now it's just a question of okay, what are the specifics? 'Cause I know it's gonna happen That's certainly very mythical, so we applaud you, sir, and we're glad to have you here as part of the Mythical team – Yes, and here's to you mythical beasts who are bringing up Google Maps right now, looking at all that ocean, finding all the islands and the continents and the cities that you might point to Point at one of those, and then go stay in a hostel there, but learn to correctly pronounce the name of the place you're gonna stay the first night, and bring an ankle brace and some ice – I'm gonna go take a nap

– [Rhett] To hear this ear biscuit in its entirety, so you don't miss a thing, follow the links in the description to Art 19, Apple podcasts, Spotify, and anywhere else podcasts are available – [Link] To watch more Ear Biscuits click the video on the left – [Rhett] To get more from this is mythical, click the video on the right – [Link] And don't forget to subscribe by clicking the circular icon – [Rhett] Thanks for being your mythical best

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