The Traveller Diaries: My Mate Pol

In the second edition of the ‘Traveller Diaries’ I spoke to one of my favourite humans of all time; Pol. He is one of those people who’s happiness and zest for life is infectious, his smile makes everyone smile. He is one of the kindest and most generous people I have ever met and also one of the most positive people. I cannot put into words just how amazing this guy is, he spreads love wherever he goes. Also he gives the best hugs ever!
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Where are you currently?
In Thailand.
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Where are you from?
Vic, a small city north west of Barcelona, Catalonia.
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Where have you been?
I have visited France, Malta, Ireland, Monaco, Denmark, Greece, Croatia, Holand, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Sweden, Portugal, Russia, Malasia and USA. And lived in Italy, Canada, Andorra and Thailand.
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When did you start traveling?
I started very young going with my family on vacation. I went on my first solo trip when I was 14 to study English for three weeks in Dublin, Ireland. The next two summers I went to Malta for the same reason and some others as I was on my teenage extasis. After that went on an Erasmus (exchange program between european universities) to Florence, Italy for five months. During that time I realized that I wanted to live traveling. It was just too good not to.
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How has it changed or impacted your life in anyway?
Dramatically! I was following the “standard” path eventhough my studies were really creative. I guess the enhancement of my creativity plus the opportunity to study abroad helped me to free myself from the “building a career” through hard work to approach life as a continuous chain of experiences that help you grow in ways I never thought before. I now know that everything is possible, and I am a better person.
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What has been the best thing about travelling?
The learning process through people and myself. The shared experiences and those inner ones. The unexpected surprises, the unconditional love. People. 
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What has been your favourite place or moment?
It is not easy to say, so I would go for those random events that end up being great stories to tell friends and family like when I got given a pair of shoes after loosing mines, slept in the streets of Vancouver in March, went to The Magical Mystery Tour, ate instant noodles for two weeks because of the lack of money being alone in Thailand… and so on. In Canada I had so many of those and they keep happening everywhere I go.
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How do you fund your travels?
I work in each country where I want to spend some time. Basically I stablish in a place that I like, find a job that I like and work as little as possible to make enough to go to the next place. This year 2016 I have worked four and a half months and I have lived in Andorra for the whole winter season, spent three months back home with friends and family and traveled to Thailand where I currently am.
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Will/Have you stopped?
My will is to keep travelling for a long time. I am planning a motorcycle trip around Thailand, Cambodja, Laos and Vietnam and hoping to spend the next winter season in Japow. In April I will also apply for the NZ Working Holiday Visa, so the traveling mode is definetly ON.
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Has it impacted your career?
Well, this is my career if we want to call it that way. Traveling the world, living and learning from as many new and different experiences as I can. I know everything happens for a reason so, as well as it all makes sense as I am doing it (at times), it will also make sense further away on the path of my life. If you think of a common career, studying, working and climbing up the hierarchy of the company or a business sector, travelling can work more or less with the same pattern where each step, experience, brings you to a new one, growing in knowledge and responsability. The difference is that in the first one you are part of an organized artificial system and in the second one you are part of the chaos and perfect randomness of life.
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Where would you tell first time travellers to go?
I would say: “Don’t you know about that place you have thought about so many times, that place that you find on books and movies, on TV and in your dreams? There is where you should go and find out the treasure that is waiting for you!”
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What advice would you give someone thinking about it?
It is even easier than you may think. People around love travelers, humans open and smily enough to give hughs to strangers. And for the money, just save a little bit and go. You will be amazed with the job opportunities that open up along the way just by talking to people. There are also many opportunities to travel with low budgets such as WWOOFing, Couchsurfing, Workaway, etc.
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Favourite travel app?
Talking to the natives, asking them for directions, advice on food and places to visit. They know the roots, the reality of the place which to me is the most worthy to experience.
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Top photo tip?
My friend Quique told me a few years ago when travelling back home from Flocence by train: “There are two types of moments; photo moments and eye moments.” The best tip is to learn how to recognise them.
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Packing tip?
If you think you will need three, take two. Trust me, I have carried so many unnecessary things around. If you need something you don’t have you will easily find it where you go.
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Extra comments?
As my friend Mitch said while canoeing down The River of the Golden Dreams in Whistler, Canada, we are “living in the complete now”.The more I am able to do that, the more I understand that everything is possible and everything happens for a reason. So be free my friends, not just free, but FREE. Much health and happiness.
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