10-Year Anniversary (First Time Traveling Abroad)

When I clicked “book flight” and got the confirmation, it felt as if my heart fell not only to my stomach, but right out of my body in general. I recall the moment when my mother was walking across the living room and I said, “hey, so I’m going to Australia.”

She said nothing but a head-shake.

Was this a good sign? Didn’t matter. It was what Arsenio wanted.

This trip was a concoction of so many emotions, gifts, overcomings, gratitude, seeing kangaroos, and seeing an entire new world that I never thought existed. This was beauty at a grand scale. This was waking up in the morning to the aroma of my mother’s pancakes. This was seeing money in the bank for the first time in 2005. Hell, this was greater than any of those things.

From the accents on the plane, to landing in Brisbane, Australia, to speaking to a Chinese-Australian for the first time. I was so in-the-moment. I was in awe, looking around and taking a glance at everything around me. Remember, this coming from a guy who’s only been to two deserts before in his life (and Cedar City, Utah, not much else to say about that).

Throughout those ten days: blue mountains, best hot chocolate in the world, best Belgian chocolate in the world, Darling Harbour, crazy nights out, romantic dinner (although that failed) and a surprise booking of a hotel with a girl who I was trying so hard to be with (but wanted nothing from me). When I left, I cried. I was sad, broken, so many things….I didn’t know if I could move to Australia, but with perseverance, I did. Sadly enough, the girl who I was pursuing cheated on me; and with the worst rude awakening, entered a year-long abusive relationship with another man.

Me, on the other hand, moved to Australia two years later and started one of those memorable journeys of my life (and still continues today). Tune in for the entire podcast down below!

Traveling Pod: Episode 011 – Malaysia for the First Travel of 2019!

YES! Omg, this year is going to feature some super interesting travels, but none are better than kicking off the inaugural flight to one of my favorite places in the world — MALAYSIA!

YES! Omg, this year is going to feature some super interesting travels, but none are better than kicking off the inaugural flight to one of my favorite places in the world — MALAYSIA!

Yes, Spartan Super…..really not looking forward to it (this will be my first and last of the year), but it has to be done and i have to test my body and see if it has progressed since last November (absolute sure).

Nonetheless, this is kicking off with some sneak peeks.

Klook.com has helped me significantly. I’ve already bought my KLIA eskpress train ticket (QR code rather than going to the counter) and it’s on my phone. The SIM card is ready to go, too. So right when I land and stand in that 45-minute line, I can send messages and communicate with the world. It’s pure BRILLIANCE!

Amari Don Meung

What a smooth ride all the way over. Going to this side of town gives me nervous jitters because it was a place that I used to live for 3.5 years. I can’t say they were bad years, but more character building years. The last time I had flown out of this airport had to be July of last year, so to see the surrounding facilities and the massive skytrain develop the way it has…is pretty amazing.

When I arrived at the hotel, I had to walk through the restaurant, which was serving some DAMN “smelling-good” type food. I went down an escalator and arrived at check-in. For the first time in years, I was greeted with a smile and check-in was smoother-than-ever.

HOWEVER!

There was a bit of an issue. A guy smiled at me….well, I thought he did. I looked over my right shoulder and didn’t see anyone.

He did it a second time before coming over from where he was sitting….to sitting directly behind me at the check-in counter. This was reminisce of the mayhem I went through when I first visited Bangkok.

Some of you are asking yourselves “who was he? Who are these people?” Well, let’s just say these are sex solicitors. How do hotels allow these types of monsters to operate ON PROPERTY, is beyond comprehension. They try selling dumb ass services such as suits, sex massage, and other repugnant things. Luckily, I knew exactly what he was going to ask me. So while the lady was checking me in, I was like “speak Thai to him….he’ll go away in an instant.” These types of people target non-Thai speaking foreigners/solo travelers (especially men because they know the men want to experience a lot of exotic things). I, on the other hand, was too difficult to solicit because I knew his malicious game. He tried giving me a high-five at the end and I kinda blew him off (didn’t want to be that much of an asshole….but it happened). It was a quick exchange, he knew I was a teacher, and once I told him “yes,” he shifted his body language and turned away because he knew I wasn’t falling for his scam. BOOM!

The room was very quaint. It had a like a 90’s retro feel to it. Spacious, comfortable seating, and a dated alarm clock (which I actually liked). I didn’t go swimming or anything, but it was somewhat quiet. And although the price may seem a bit steep for a lot of travelers (about 90$ a night), you can also stay at other hotels in the area but you have to walk through sweltering traffic to get there and it’s not connected to the airport.

Upon check-out, I literally woke up, walked downstairs, got my deposit, and walked across an air-conditioned pedestrian bridge to the airport, and took an elevator one floor up to get to the departure lounge. Honestly, other than Changi Airport, tell me a more convenient way? Transit hotels are popular only at Changi airport….or else you would have to pay a lot of money to stay at big-name hotel chains.

Rating – 9.0 out of 10

Yes, Spartan Super…..really not looking forward to it (this will be my first and last of the year), but it has to be done and i have to test my body and see if it has progressed since last November (absolute sure).

Nonetheless, this is kicking off with some sneak peeks.

Klook.com has helped me significantly. I’ve already bought my KLIA eskpress train ticket (QR code rather than going to the counter) and it’s on my phone. The SIM card is ready to go, too. So right when I land and stand in that 45-minute line, I can send messages and communicate with the world. It’s pure BRILLIANCE!

Amari Don Meung

What a smooth ride all the way over. Going to this side of town gives me nervous jitters because it was a place that I used to live for 3.5 years. I can’t say they were bad years, but more character building years. The last time I had flown out of this airport had to be July of last year, so to see the surrounding facilities and the massive skytrain develop the way it has…is pretty amazing.

When I arrived at the hotel, I had to walk through the restaurant, which was serving some DAMN “smelling-good” type food. I went down an escalator and arrived at check-in. For the first time in years, I was greeted with a smile and check-in was smoother-than-ever.

HOWEVER!

There was a bit of an issue. A guy smiled at me….well, I thought he did. I looked over my right shoulder and didn’t see anyone.

He did it a second time before coming over from where he was sitting….to sitting directly behind me at the check-in counter. This was reminisce of the mayhem I went through when I first visited Bangkok.

Some of you are asking yourselves “who was he? Who are these people?” Well, let’s just say these are sex solicitors. How do hotels allow these types of monsters to operate ON PROPERTY, is beyond comprehension. They try selling dumb ass services such as suits, sex massage, and other repugnant things. Luckily, I knew exactly what he was going to ask me. So while the lady was checking me in, I was like “speak Thai to him….he’ll go away in an instant.” These types of people target non-Thai speaking foreigners/solo travelers (especially men because they know the men want to experience a lot of exotic things). I, on the other hand, was too difficult to solicit because I knew his malicious game. He tried giving me a high-five at the end and I kinda blew him off (didn’t want to be that much of an asshole….but it happened). It was a quick exchange, he knew I was a teacher, and once I told him “yes,” he shifted his body language and turned away because he knew I wasn’t falling for his scam. BOOM!

The room was very quaint. It had a like a 90’s retro feel to it. Spacious, comfortable seating, and a dated alarm clock (which I actually liked). I didn’t go swimming or anything, but it was somewhat quiet. And although the price may seem a bit steep for a lot of travelers (about 90$ a night), you can also stay at other hotels in the area but you have to walk through sweltering traffic to get there and it’s not connected to the airport.

Upon check-out, I literally woke up, walked downstairs, got my deposit, and walked across an air-conditioned pedestrian bridge to the airport, and took an elevator one floor up to get to the departure lounge. Honestly, other than Changi Airport, tell me a more convenient way? Transit hotels are popular only at Changi airport….or else you would have to pay a lot of money to stay at big-name hotel chains.

Rating – 9.0 out of 10

Listen to “Traveling Podcast: Episode 011 – Malaysia, Don Meung, Renaissance – GLORY!” on Spreaker.

Interviewee #026 – Moustafa Sano – The Marathon Man!

I brought Moustafo on a long time ago, and here I am bringing him on again because there was a particular pain threshold he passed that I’m very captivated by.  Being able to overcome the amount of pain, a rain storm, fatigue and other things is just AMAZING. Reminds me of David Goggins, so here is my Malaysian fitness entrepreneur again!

Get in touch with Moustafa Sano

Links:

Things we discussed:

Dieting before the race.

How much sleep before the marathon.

The entire experience of the marathon itself.

Body usage.

The moment you want to give up is the 40% threshold.

Individuals hitting that threshold, ultimately giving up during the race.

Eating and recharging after the marathon.

Pain thresholds.

Listen to “Interviewee #026 – Moustafa Sano – The Marathon Man!” on Spreaker.

Thank you for listening!

Links:

  1. Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/thearseniobuckshow/
  2. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thearseniobuckshow/?hl=en
  3. YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIzp4EdbJVMhhSnq_0u4ntA
  4. Podcasts: https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow, https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-arsenio-buck-show/id1181794790?mt=2, https://open.spotify.com/show/0x39CEN5tHvfRtfZaAMTgQ?si=8cpdu1rTTjKHogufXh91Cw
  5. Website: https://thearseniobuckshow.com/
  6. Twitter: https://twitter.com/arseniobuckshow?lang=en

Interviewee #15 – Moustafa Sano On Fitness, Learning Five Languages, & Fitting In

It was an afternoon when I received a few video messages in my Instagram inbox.  Here was a guy that I’ve never met before sending me videos.  I was a bit adamant in terms of opening those videos, but I’m glad I did because it ended up  being one of the most inspirational guys ever!

 

Get in touch with Moustafa Sano of Malaysia

– About fitting in, learning 5 languages and fitness.

 

Links:

 

Things we discussed:

  • Rite of passage in our pre – teen years.
  • Different cultures, values and morals.
  • Understanding of other cultures are important.
  • People’s stories because people deserve to be listened to.
  • Different cultures have different ways of communication.
  • Pain turned to sports without realising it was self – expression to pain.
  • Self – image is important.
  • Need to have an empathy.
  • Fitness is important.
  • Don’t keep your pain inside you.
  • Pain is another key to success.
  • Racial tension or racism in Malaysia.
  • Learning Malay language (Bahasa) through playing football within his neighbourhood.
  • Languages are a way to bridge the gap between foreigners and locals.
  • Talking about personal development on “empathy”.
  • Benefits of reading – how you contextualise?
  • Personal development books that change your life and skills.
  • Pain is a good form of motivation.
  • Being proactive vs reactive.
  • Motivation comes from your morals and values and live life through your imagination.
  • The best way to learn a languages is by getting yourself outside — not by writing.
  • Learn about people’s languages.
  • Watching movies and listening to podcasts.
  • Learning different cultural – expressions through watching movies.
  • Talking about paradigm shifting of habits to growth.
  • Read more, talk more and train or challenge your brain to keep yourself fit in terms of spirituality.
  • The power of giving.
  • Believe in your words.
  • Life filled with fulfilment when you give people more.
  • The impact that you try to give to this world and the people.
  • The purpose of suffering and pain.

 

Thank you for listening!

 

Thank you so much for joining me for this podcast. Please do write down some feedbacks and comments. Please do share this podcast to your social media.

 

Links:

 

Podcast

Spartan Beast Malaysia = Cancelled; Now What? Spartan Beast Australia!

I went from booking a ticket, thinking that my Spartan Beast in Malaysia was on a Saturday, to cancelling a plane ticket and realizing that plane tickets on other days were at extortionate prices.  YIKES!

What a disaster.  What seemed like a sure Spartan Beast and trifecta claiming weekend turned into a nightmare whereas I almost lost out on $167 dollars.

So, Arsenio….your health goals of 2018 have suffered a minor hiccup.  What are you going to do now?

Well, there were three options.  First, I’m grateful I don’t have to fly back to Malaysia at this point because I’m so sick of the garbage airlines (Malindo Air & Air Asia) that are ALWAYS late.  I’m sick of almost getting in mid-air collisions (on Malindo) and Air Asia) and terrible service — along with cardboard box seats.

So, got it.  “It’s a low-budget airline.”  Well, no more!

I’d much rather take some time off from these low-budget airlines than deal with lunacy of them always being late.

Well, I’m first very grateful for having experiences both airlines, but it’s time to spend a tad more and fly reputable airlines from a better airline that’s connected to the rail link, which is connected to the city.

Anywho, let’s focus on the matter…my Spartan Beast has been stopped, momentarily, and now it’s either the Beast in Thailand, Australia, or Malaysia (lol) in December (in the Malaysian/Singaporean border town of Johor Bahru). What will I choose?

 

Traveling Pod: Episode 6 – From Hell To Heaven!

Double check-ins, as mentioned before (at Don Meung International in Bangkok, Thailand), had some stereotypical treatment to them.  Yeah, already mentioned.  Then there was the delay turned almost mid-air collision with not one, but two other aircrafts.  I saw it with my own eyes.  We were ascending and we flew directly under a Singapore Airlines jumbo with another private passerby zooming the opposite direction, coming maybe 2km from both planes.  I’ve never seen anything like it.  Such a vast sky but Air Traffic Control failed miserably at this.  Terrifying experience and none of the passengers knew what was happening.

Anywho, landed and immigration presented me with a 45-minute wait, pushing back an anticipated meeting with my content writer.  After the nice officer cleared me, I ran to the Express train that connects the airports with the city center.  After that, I went to 7-11 (due to starvation) before making a six-station trek to my hotel which I was abruptly greeted by loud ass music at the base of a 100$ USD a night hotel?! Checked in, and of course, card was denied.  I said, “man, this is going to get worse.”  During the “denial” process, my content writer called and said she couldn’t wait for me any longer.  Great!

In the end, it was approached, finally, and I went upstairs, sleepily, not wanting to go anywhere and that was day 1.  Definitely one of the worst travel days in history, but then, I knew what was going to follow.

Just one more snippet, and then heaven.

After waking up and feeling like complete ass, I knew I needed to head to the train station to meet my friend, Hakeem Khan, who’s a fitness entrepreneur in Kuala Lumpur.  I didn’t forget, but I failed to go out and get a sim card in the night, resulting in me waiting and using wifi at the Sentral Station.  I plead to Hakeem and told him, “meet me there at 10:45!” So then there it went…I got to the station about 45 minutes later and he wasn’t there.  I was scratching my head, and then put a stop-loss on worry: “he has 10 minutes or I’m going back home.” I gave him five…I bought a ticket and went to the opposite side of the tracks, waiting patiently with my palm on my forehead, for the train.

I glanced over the railway for some odd reason and I saw someone waving their helmet.  IT WAS HIM! I began to fun up the stairs, and at the same time, I was telling myself, “ummm, what excuse can I come up with at that moment to tell him what I was doing.”  We laughed it off in the end, and then heaven broke through.

Heaven, come to me, baby!

I took a taxi to his gym, and boy, was I blown away! A 22-year-old with a gym like that? Loads of equipment inside, nice set up, a place where he does all of his videos, and in a nice, university section of Sham Alah.

I was on 4 hours of sleep from the night before, basically because a terrible hotel, but that didn’t stop him from getting the best out of me or me getting the best out of him.  The podcast was sensational, followed by Nandos (Portuguese chicken restaurant) and lots of funny stories.  After that was all done, I went back to my hotel in the evening and was greeted with some extraordinary news.

What I’ve been envisioning is teaching at a bank Mon-Fri in the morning.  I got a message with the other person stating they have another project from the same bank they want to give me.

I’m just so grateful for everything. I find myself in gratitude a heck of a lot more than before because everything I’ve been through was because of this moment.  This moment right here.

And so, here I am at the airport getting ready to take a flight back to Thailand….and I’ll be back in 17 days, too.

Stay tuned!

Ramble of Positivity: Episode XXVI – Number Four + A Resounding Offer

Here I am in the middle of the check-in line, grateful as hell (although the following events will lead to a different podcast on self-control) because this is a record forth country this year alone.  Not only that, but an offer — here’s the story.

Back in 2016, I taught at a company in an industrial estate just north of where my previous job is.  This company got in contact with my company and decided to sign a deal whereas they would send teachers there to teach.   Let me give you a rundown of what my company (and others) do.

When marketing directors advertise a company to another company to promote their brand of learning English, they normally state a massive initial number in terms of the total course cost.  Hardly ever does it stay that number, but the number still remained quite steep.

Some of the companies would be massive Japanese teach companies like Toshiba, and even Austrian companies like Swarovski.  Anywho, The teach gets paid only a fraction of the total cost.

Let’s put it this way.  I got paid 22$ an hour to teach at a Japanese tech company, but the company profited somewhere between 100-300$ per hour.  This is one of the biggest problems because teachers are taken advantage of, but how can a teacher market himself? Let’s go deeper.

An ex student of mine contacted me via Facebook messenger and said, “excuse me, teacher.  How much would it cost ____________ to pay you to come back and teach here?”

Let me put this at a macro scale.

They didn’t call my old place of work back; or maybe they did and realized that I no longer worked there (a really high chance). Therefore, one of the students got into direct contact with me and asked me for my services.

Do you understand how powerful that is? I just took down a 9-year-old language center because of maybe my online persona, charisma, or maybe because I’m just a devoted individual when it comes to teaching and inspiring?

When I got that message, my jaw-dropped.  They didn’t call them; they called ME! They want MY services and they’re willing to pay me in FULL for the work I do.

See, guys, when you get to a stage in your life when you’re building such an incredible online persona, people will start getting in contact with YOU.  Remember, a headhunter recently contacted me that’s stationed outside Santiago, Chile.  I received another email from another guy about 12 hours later, and in the previous two months, and Indian tech company based in Delhi wanted me to teach there team in Bangkok.

It’s patience, people.  I was just in a state of oblivion and despair the first three months of this year because I was trying to break the chains of an old job while trying to search for new ones.  I was turned down by 6 different solo-job-applicants because the color of my skin; and another company disregarded all my emails after sending me six potential job suitors.

Create YOUR BRAND! Create YOUR PRICE! And NEVER give up when times get tough…because the breakthrough is on the verge!

Put A “Stop Loss” Order On Your Worries: Visa Madness Turned Multiple Trips

I covered this particular podcast a long time ago, but this has transformed COMPLETELY the way I view situations.  Putting a stop-loss on something can range from a unreliable friend that shows up late to meals, to dealing with mundane tasks.  If there’s something that’s bugging you, put a stop-loss on it, figure it out within a 10-minute time-frame, and move on.

Visa Madness

So, today I came across a situation that I had to really think things through.  After talking to myself in a voice message to one of my content writers, I figured it out instantaneously.

Because immigration in Thailand is a massive pain in the ass, my documents wouldn’t be ready for me to get my visa on July 9th, a trip that has already been booked and paid for.  What does this mean? That means I’m going to Malaysia from the 8th to the 10th next month and I won’t even obtain a visa while I’m there.

My historical self would’ve quickly jumped around, pouting, acting like the end of the world is here.  However, let’s put this into perspective and watch the stop-loss.

  • I have to leave the country no matter what, so buying the flight was perfect.
  • Two nights in Malaysia? Extra night and loss of $100 USD? Not so fast.  Meeting with my content writer, workout/podcast/meal/Instagram videos with a powerlifter who’s an entrepreneur, and a nice two-day trip.
  • July 27th-30th = Spartan Beast Malaysia…so I have to go back in 18 days already.
  • Visa trip = August 25th.

“Arsenio, ok….all planned out.  What about the money?”  I save an insane amount and I still travel and pay all my bills.  $100 RT ticket to Malaysia and a night or two (preferably two) in a hotel.  Spend next-to-nothing and that’s it! I win!

See, this is how you evaluate situations.  Am I in a hurry to get the visa? Absolutely NOT.  I can give a damn! That’s why I’m pushing it back even further because I simply don’t give a damn.  Yes, I have to travel a heck of a lot more often, but who the hell would complain about traveling?!

Emergency Vacation: Singapore!

Yes, you read it right! Because of ridiculous rules at immigration and me just simply not wanting to inject anymore of my hard-earned money into this economy, I decided to take (literally) a one-day trip to Singapore.

As you probably already know, I’ve had several layovers in Singapore because I had to switch to a bigger plane before heading to LAX via Narita Airport in Japan.  What I loved so much about Singapore was the service, transit hotel, and being able to take a shower for $9 USD.

Well, this is finally the time I’m going to step outside the airport and see what the rest of the country has to offer.  With a hotel stationed just right outside a line that heads directly into the airport, and with one of my favorite people in the world (student who studies at MDIS in Singapore) waiting for me there with maybe a couple other friends, this will make for an interestingly short trip.  I booked a hotel I might not be at for long.  I might go sightseeing and head to Sentosa Island, but there are a variety of different things that will be coming up.

https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow/emergency-vacation-singapore

Ramble of Positivity: 5th Anniversary In Thailand

It’s been an unbelievable 5 years.  Wow, how can I even put it into context. I will try highlighting this through pictures.

First Three Years

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You understand where my focus was, right? 2013-2015 were the rough years with lots of racial influences, advertisements, and me focusing on “what I didn’t want.” I had a woman from Thai Airways threaten my life, stating that she would get dangerous people to kick my face in.  I got the “ewww black man! Low-class! Pimp!” comments from lots of women.  I was denied jobs for being black.  My language center (New Education World if you must know the name) denied me dozens of jobs stating, “ohhh, they want a white teacher.”  All of these culminated for three years (and even well into this year after cutting off the unknowledgeable job)…..until the beginning of 2016.

Then this happened…..

Last Two Years

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And just like that, within two years time, I was able to overcome all of the ignorance — ignorance that I saturated myself in.  Let’s look back at the years that transformed me into the influential figure I am.  It’s time for the ramble!

My first photo, which was taken at a night safari deep in some forest in Bali, is possibly the best trip I’ve ever had in my life.  Bali, an alluring island that’s tucked away in the bottom of Indonesia, was one of those chips that changed me as a human being.  It should’ve been the trip that made me quit my current job, but it never crossed my mind.  This island is inhabited with white sandy beaches, quiet beachside fronts, jungles, monkeys, and a rich history.  The indigenous people there are full of smiles, big round eyes, and possess such a wonderful heart.

The second Spartan Race, which took place in Chon Buri, Thailand, was a memorable WALK.  I’m kidding.  However, I’m not kidding about it just being a long walk.  Regardless of laziness and the willingness to push yourself, this was one of my favorite runs because the amount of smiles and people pushing each other.

Maldives.  I’m laughing while writing this because this was a country that featured no currency.  That’s right.  I went there with Thai currency, only to be turned away and had no means of getting any currency while I was there.  Until I was met with the most incredible gesture anyone has ever given me.  This trip, which could’ve been a hell of a lot better, taught me a lot about myself in general.

Ho Chi Mihn City – the city of beautiful souls.  Well, not all.  I got cussed out roadside by a Vietnamese boy who was soliciting me for services *curling eyes*.  Going inside the remnants war museum and seeing the pure destruction the USA Army unleashed upon all Vietnamese crippled me inside.  Not only that, but it made me realize how strong-willed the Vietnamese are.

First Spartan Race in Malaysia (and the one just two weeks ago) were FUN! Wait, I’ll take that back. The first Spartan race SUCKED.  Ok, yes….it was near public transportation (versus the last one that was in the middle of a damn jungle), but there weren’t comedians or anyone cheering each other on – on the course.  Get what I’m saying? But a Sprint and Super have been achieved.  It’s time for the BEAST!

Moving into my new condo and leaving a place that was killing my insides…was a monumental feature.  I believe I brought all the pain from the beginning of the years to my last job and it held me down.  I took the leap of faith, left, and I could finally breathe again.

Anyways, enough of that.  How about checking some things off my list! Sheraton Hotel, which is a five-star hotel in KL, was put on my 101 goals list in 2015 — ACHIEVED! It wasn’t the only one to join the “checking” list with several others being highlighted.

And last but not least, the trip back to Arizona — a place I haven’t been in years.  I competed in a Tough Mudder after fighting off food poisoning (courtesy of Singapore Airlines – Thank You!).

All in all, when I was looking in my camera roll on my iPhone, I began to tear up.  How was I able to overcome all of it?

Personal development, of course.  5 years in Thailand and I still go through the craziness of it all.  So, I want to just say THANK YOU to no only my loyal followers and supporters, but the fact that I never gave up.