Thursday, June 05, 2014

Q & A with Daniel Baylis, Author of "The Traveller"

When I call Daniel Baylis at our scheduled interview time, he’s just finished breakfast.

“I’ve had some coffee and some eggs, so that’s provided me with some fuel,” he tells me, sounding pleased.

“It sounds like you have everything that you need,” I tease.

He laughs and agrees with me. “Everything,” he laments, “except a plane ticket.”

It’s hardly a surprise that Baylis considers plane tickets to be a basic need. The self-published author of The Traveller: Notes from an imperfect journey around the world, Baylis became a poster boy for adult gap years after he spent a year travelling around the world. At 30, he was early into his career when he decided to take a break. Although he enjoyed his job, he also lived with a constant yearning for travel—and to travel with purpose. So he decided that he would start out on his yearlong journey with only one real goal: to “engage in reciprocal relationships.”

Over 12 months, Baylis would visit 12 different countries on a limited budget, exchanging labour in return for room and board. He had previously backpacked through Australia and New Zealand, but his destinations (including Africa, South American and Europe) were new, as was his method of travel (through work exchange placements).

I wanted to speak with Baylis, now settled back in Montréal, to learn more about his gap year changed his life—and his career.

Read more on Verge Magazine »
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