Who’s Out There Now: Marcello

Written By: jeff

Posted On: April 19th, 2011


travel advice, career break advice, travel the world, career break travel

Marcello ziplining in Costa Rince. Copyright WanderingTrader.com

In this week’s ¨Who’s Out There Now¨ feature, we bring to you Marcello who run the site, Wandering Trader. This day trader has found a way criss-cross the world and make a living at the same time.

1. So, where in the world are you answering these questions?

I have just arrived in Medellin, Colombia about a week and half ago.  Before I was living in Santiago, Chile and went to Carnival in Brazil.  Its funny because I just found my apartment yesterday in a nice part of the city called Poblado.

2. You are the only travel blogger I know that day trades…at least openly. How do you balance ¨work¨ with enjoying the place where you are so you can get a sense of it.

This is such a great question!!  I actually am starting something new now that I got to Colombia.  Before when I was living in Argentina, Canada, and Chile I would typically work 3-4 days a week and then jet on the weekends.  I would set up a base in Buenos Aires for example and then travel on the weekends. Now I plan on working for 2 weeks straight, staying in the city where I set up my base (Medellin) and then traveling for 2 weeks.  2 weeks on and 2 weeks off.  This is in terms of day trading, blogging I typically do on the evenings and weekends.


travel advice, career break advice, travel the world, career break travel, Chile

In the Atacama Desert in Chile. Copyright WanderingTrader.com

3. You have a ¨Top 5¨ part of your site which gives people ideas of things not miss in various countries and cities around the world. What are your criteria for selecting the top sites and attractions?

It has to be the absolute best things to do in the city or country.  Things that you can’t miss at all.  For example, after I went to Antarctica and moved to Chile, I came back and saw the Perito Moreno Glacier in Calafate, Argentina and was completely blown away!!  It could be anything from a sight to see or something to do like Salsa dancing in Medellin.  I don’t have dancing Tango in Argentina because the true Argentinians don’t actually dance Tango.

4. Are you noticing a big change in the way you travel since you started?

Massive difference!  This new concept that I am trying out with the 2 weeks on and 2 weeks off is going to be a big change in the way I travel.  Whenever I go somewhere I have to do it all (or at least try)!!  This is going to give me much more time to travel and truly enjoy where I am going.  Before it was just ¾ days and now I don’t have to plan when I am going to come back. I can really enjoy it and just decide to leave when I want.

5. Career break, nomadic adventure, backpacking, how do you characterize your travels?

I definitely don’t backpack as a travel around with 3 or 4 pieces of luggage.  I would call it more a break into lifestyle design.  Even though I have a different way of traveling I still mix it up a bit.  During my weekend trips you can consider me a backpacker, only travel with a large college backpack.  That is of course after I get an apartment and setup a base.


travel advice, career break advice, travel the world, career break travel

Photographing the penguins in Antarctica. Copyright WanderingTrader.com

6. You seem to prefer to find apartments to stay in while you’re traveling. Why? Don’t you miss the camaraderie of the hostel?

I have designed the perfect way to travel (for me).  I personally don’t like to stay at hostel after hostel.  I like to have a place to come home to, what I call a base.  From that base I travel around and then come back and relax.  This way I never get burned out, I always have a familiar place that I call home that I always come back to.  When I finish seeing everything in the area I move to a different city and have a new home.  I typically spend 3-4 months in each base.

Sometimes I do miss meeting ppl at hostels but one thing that I love about travel is getting to know the people of the country.  I don’t travel to hang out with other travelers from Australia, Europe, and that states.  If I am living in Colombia, I want to be Colombian.  I want to hang out with Colombians, date Colombians, do what they do.  I’ve met some awesome travelers but when you have an apartment it really forces you to mesh with the locals which is what I prefer.

7. What are some of the secrets to travel that you’ve discovered that you think more people who aren’t traveling should know?

There are somethings that you always want to take on your trip.  One good example in South America is sunscreen, the stuff costs about $25 to $30 DOLLARS down here.  I have actually been able to save money buy renting an apartment rather than staying at a hostel.  The savings come from both the rent and the food that I can buy.  It’s a bit hard to cook at a hostel when 15 ppl are trying to use the kitchen at the same time.  The last one would be that not everyone hates Americans, in many parts of the world they really love them.  Its the clash between governments that’s the problem.

8. What was your first ¨I’m not in Kansas anymore¨ moment?

Wow you know, I have had so many of these.  I am so lucky to be able to do what I do and appreciate every single day of it.  Even though I have been traveling most of my life I have always come back to the U.S.  On this trip I don’t plan on coming back.  My first visit was Canada, and even though Montreal is very different it didn’t feel like I was overseas.  The first time was when I was in Buenos Aires, I moved into my apartment I sat back in my chair and as the Tango music was playing from outside I said to myself, “holy crap Im in Argentina!”


travel advice, career break advice, travel the world, career break travel

On the shore in Antarctica. Copyright WanderingTrader.com

9. What’s been your most ¨local¨ experience so far?

I would have to say when I was in Asuncion, Paraguay.  I was there for roughly 4 days and met some Paraguayans that invited me to a Spanish Reggae concert. Once we got there it was complete chaos!  Everyone was having a blast and dancing and having a great time.  One of the things about me is that I am able to fit in most places in the world.  Spanish is my first language, I speak English and Italian fluenty, and I can get by with Arabic and Portuguese.

Paraguay is the first place where the locals actually looked at me completely different.  When I was eating lunch in the hood kids would stop on the street and stair at me like I was from the moon.  While this would make a lot of people feel uncomfortable I welcomed it because I have never been in a country where I didn’t fit it right away.  I am going to be heading to Kenya in August, I think that will be my local experience to date.

10. What has been your most embarrassing moment?

This is one of the funniest moments of my current trip.  Anytime you are in a foreign country everyone are curious about what the locals do and how they do it. You know when they have cheese you always say “wow they have cheese here too!” lol.  Canada, to me, is simply an extension of the United States until you get to French Country.  We were playing poker with 2 Chinese, a Ukranian, an Egyptian, and an Indian rasied in Taiwan when a 50 cent song came on.

I quickly asked, “oh you guys listen to 50 cent here?”  They all started and laughing and said, “DUH!! You are in Canada not Rwanda!”.  I couldn’t stop laughing especially after I did it again about 5 minutes later.


travel advice, career break advice, travel the world, career break travel

Hanging out with some bodyguards in Paraguay. Copyright WanderingTrader.com

11. What’s your secret for getting the most out of your journey?

I try to stay just long enough to really delve into the culture.  My secret is to really try and delve into the culture as much as you can and get out of your comfort zone.  Travel isn’t just about seeing new things but also finding yourself as well.  I have met friends that have turned Colombian and other Americans that turn completely Latin.  Its not as much fun when you go somewhere and do the same things with the same people.  Get out there and push it to the limit!

12. Finally, our lightening round.

  • Best dish you’ve found so far: Two: Best Empanadas in Tilcara & King Crab in Ushuaia.
  • Most exotic food eaten: Whale in Iceland
  • Most breathtaking moment: Tie: Surrounding by Penguins in Antarctica & dancing with a Penguin in Puerto Madryn.
  • Biggest disappointment: When I didn’t go to Easter Island, making it happen in the next 3 months!
  • Most memorable place: Antarctica.. indescribable
  • Most memorable person: A 60 year old women that just got her black belt and had to stop from getting blackouts from fighting 6 foot men.  Oh yeah, she also biked around Easter Island on her own, how cool is that?
  • Best thing to have on a long bus ride: Sanity
  • Worst thing to have on a long bus ride: heart attack
  • Best thing you packed: Blackberry
  • Dumbest thing you packed: 2 laptops and a 19 inch monitor, who does that?
  • Funniest travel habit you have: Strawberries.  I always buy strawberries because I love them and they always rot.  And I always end up buying more.  Its one of the first things I look for when I go overseas
  • Place you wish you could’ve stayed longer: Asuncion, Paraguay

You can follow Marcello online at WanderingTrader on Facebook and on Twitter @WanderingTradr

Every week, Career Break Secrets profiles a different traveler or traveling couple who are embracing the ¨Because Life Is Out There TM¨ travel spirit.  These are people who have taken the plunge to embark on a career break and are currently traveling the world.

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