Posted on October 14, 2016
20 Questions with Marc Smith
20 Questions with Marc Smith
It’s rare that I cross paths with Marc Smith these days. Defining the term “globetrotter,” it seems that Marc is more often than not exploring an exciting destination in a far-off land. His story is inspiring: after many years as event planner in Vancouver, Marc developed a hunger for change. On somewhat of a whim, he packed it in and started his blog, 30 Day Adventures. The blog has since become a platform for sharing his experiences, travel ideas, where to eat, where to drink, and where to stay in the places he visits. A BC boy born and raised, I’ve known Marc for a few years. Unfortunately I haven’t had the chance to get to really know him, so I was thrilled that he was game to answer 20 Questions!
1. What are you really excited about these days?
I am really excited about planning my 2017 year of travel. I’m hoping to base myself out of London for at least three months while I explore England, Scotland, and other parts of Europe.
2.What was the last picture you took on your phone?
This selfie with my best friend over coffee in Toronto.
3. 30 Day Adventures really thrusts you in the spotlight. Making yourself accessible like that can open the door to admiration but also criticism. How do you handle criticism?
Feedback in general is something I take with a grain of salt. I listen to it all, and then weigh the context and who it’s coming from. If I admire, respect, and trust the person that is giving it to me, I absolutely consider it with more weight. If it is from a stranger I try my best to take the emotion out it and then ask myself if the feedback is valid. If I disagree with it, I move on. While having a healthy ego when you are in the public eye is very necessary, having that ego and not being an ass when things go well is a constant struggle to maintain.
In my 20s I would have been an ass if this success had happened to me. Now, I hope I am fairly balanced in my appreciation, and don’t take anything for granted.
4. What’s an upcoming adventure you’re about to embark on?
I just came back from two weeks in Great Britain where I didn’t write a single story about the trip. I’m excited to return once in 2017 for a longer period of time, and really explore the history and culture in depth. I haven’t had the luxury of being able to spend a huge chunk of time there until now.
5. The career you’ve built for yourself is pretty dreamy, but if you weren’t running your blog, what would you be doing instead?
It’s very likely that I’d still be running the event planning company I transitioned out of to focus 100% on my blog. If I was still doing that I would be very, very unhappy.
6. The Breakfast Club featured a rebel, a princess, a brainiac, an outcast, and a jock. Who were you in high school?
[Laughing] I was all four! I got pretty much straight A’s in high school, didn’t belong to any cliques, but I was obsessed with brands, labels, and dressing in the cool, new look. I got my first job was at 13 because I wanted to buy clothes that my parents wouldn’t pay for. As for the “jock” label… does golf count?
7. If I gave you three airline tickets to anywhere in the world, which three destinations would you choose?
London, Amsterdam and Vienna. I want to do a Sound of Music tour!
8. What’s your all-time favourite jam from the ‘80s or ‘90s?
I loved Erasure. And Seal’s original Seal album.
9. Where do you see yourself in 2021?
I want to continue sharing my travel adventures on the blog, host a web or TV-based series and speak at conferences and events all over the world. The goal here is to create a career and life that I’m always happy with. If you don’t dream big, don’t bother dreaming!
10. Pretend I’m a fantastic bartender. What drink are you ordering from me?
I want you to create something boozy and unique just for me. Maybe something you’ve been experimenting with but haven’t served to anyone else yet.
11. Oh boy – the pressure is on! Okay, it’s now 2:00 a.m. and I’ve served you half a dozen intoxicating specialties. Where are you going for your greasy food fix?
OMG I want a burger with poutine! Back in the early 90s in Vancouver, I would end every night at the bar with a visit to Doll & Penny’s for a Chicken Mexicali Burger and Frenchy Fries (aka their version of poutine). I still crave it more than 20 years later.
12. In your travels, what’s the one restaurant that you’d love to go back and eat at again?
13. What’s the biggest misconception people have about you in real life?
People often say how much they want my life, but I often wonder if they realize how much work happens behind the scenes. People also think I talk all the time, because when I’m in public I do, but I also crave alone time. I’ve spent entire weekends doing nothing and talking to no one just so that I don’t have to talk.
14. If you could star as any character in the remake of any movie, which famous role would you reprise?
Well, I’ve watched The Sound of Music at least 50 times in my life so I immediately think I’d want to be Maria, but secretly the real movie character I want to be is Doctor Strange in the upcoming Marvel movie. Can you make a remake of a movie that hasn’t been released?
15. If you could learn a new skill, language, or hobby, what would it be?
OMG, absolutely language. I’d love to be able to speak French and Spanish. Perhaps I’ll start ticking that goal off my list this year.
16. Who are you most proud of?
My mom is amazing. When my father passed away unexpectedly 16 years ago, my mom adapted and created a new life for herself. She did what she wanted to do and didn’t bow to pressure from friends or family.
17. Who is (or was) the single most influential person in your life?
That has to be my parents. I am a composite of their skills, personality, and work ethic. They taught me through doing and by being an exemplary example every day of their lives.
18. I’m throwing a dinner party next weekend. You’re invited and can bring three others with you (dead or alive). Who should I set the table for?
I would first ask who else you have invited. I have a long guest list of people I’d invite so based on your other guests I would choose who I think would add to the chemistry. If it was just us then I think I’d invite Julie Andrews, Cole Porter, and Oscar Wilde
19. What’s the one question you wish someone would ask you?
Are you available to speak at our 5000-person conference?
20. That’s brave! So are you available to speak at our 5000-person conference?
All photos are provided courtesy of Marc Smith.