Introducing Million Ways to Live!
The time has finally come. It’s time to say a few final goodbyes, drive to the airport, and jump on a plane. You can try your best to stay cool, calm, and collected as you walk up to the check-in desk at the airport, but if you stay tuned into your body, you can subtly feel a full spectrum of emotions fighting their way to the surface in order to be totally felt. The closer you get to the departure gate, the more evident and intense those feelings seem to become.
This trip is no different. Well, that’s not totally true. This will be Jack’s first trip with us. Jack joined our little party on March 15, when he was born in Auckland, New Zealand. We truly hope Jack’s soul knew what it was doing when it selected him for this lifetime. After all, this 8-month old is about to embark on a 32-country tour over the course of 14 months. I guess that’s another reason this trip might be a little different. Oh, and one last thing. We’ll be making a documentary web series about healthy living in the different cultures we spend time in, but more on that later.
After nearly three years of planning this trip (obviously Jack was a welcomed addition, but nonetheless created some slight itinerary modifications), we were finally stepping up to the ticketing agent at Fiji Airways as a family, fighting hard to keep the intense emotions at bay. Only one hour until boarding. After handing over our passports, the fun began:
Check-In Agent: Do you have Jack’s ticket?
Me: No, isn’t it in the system?
Check-In Agent: Unfortunately, not. There are tickets here for Luke Sniewski and Claire Robbie, but nothing for Jack Sniewski.
Me: That’s strange. We made this booking months ago and had to stay on the phone for nearly three hours to make sure it was done correctly. We have multiple flights in Fiji, and we made sure Jack was on every one.
Check-In Agent: Well it looks like Jack is on your domestic flights in Fiji, but your international flight from Auckland to Nadi does not exist.
Me: And how exactly is my infant son supposed to get to Nadi for our domestic flights if not by this flight?
The conversation went nowhere fast, and with time running down the only solution was to call Fiji Airways. An absurd $265 later, Jack had his boarding pass for our flight to Fiji.
The point of this story is regardless of how well you plan your trip will always throw plenty of unknowns in your way. It’s inevitable. Jack’s ticket flub wasn’t the only issue we had to deal with, either. Claire and I were teaching a wellness retreat in Fiji for a week before heading to Los Angeles to hang out with my family so they could meet Baby Jack. While I was on the phone with Fiji Airways, Claire was on the phone with one of the retreaters, who had failed to realize he needs a valid and up-to-date passport to travel to Fiji to participate in the retreat. Of course, New Zealand being the quick and efficient country that it is, it took all but a few hours at the passport office to have a brand new passport ready to go.
Both situations could have escalated and caused stress, yelling, and plenty of finger pointing, but they didn’t. With trips of any length—and certainly a trip around the world—you have to be prepared for anything, remain calm, and find solutions. There will always be some unexpected ups throughout the trip that offset the downs. Somehow it manages to balance itself out. And if this infant ticket and passport situation are the worst things we’ll deal with during our global project, then I’d consider it a blessed trip.
But let’s be real: It won’t be. We’re traveling around the world as a family making a documentary web series—Million Ways to Live—about healthy living in different cultures. With an 8-month old baby. With that many variables and moving parts, it’s sure to be a wild ride full of unexpected twists and turns. We’ll try our best to stay composed. In a way, we were happy to have dealt with those situations early on, so we know we got a few of them out of the way and to see how we handled them.
Over the next year, we’ll also be keeping everyone here at Jetset Extra updated with our travel stories, latest documentary episodes, and even a few property and accommodation highlights we experience along the way. Hopefully Claire and I will provide you with a few insights into some far-off places. Mainly, however, you’ll be keeping up with our web series.
The web series is based on my book—also titled “Million Ways to Live”—which highlights the six Healthy Lifestyle Principles: Real Food, Movement, Rest & Relaxation, Lifelong Learning, Community, and Love. Rather than listening to trendy fads and hype, my book invites you to listen to your body and be your own wellness guru. The six Healthy Lifestyle Principles are simply the blueprints, while you design and build the lifestyle best suited for you.
Anyone can apply these principles to their lives in a million different ways, and we’re excited to show you how healthy and happy people around the world live by these principles in their own unique ways. We want to inspire healthy living. So while you stay tuned for updates, enjoy the trailer to our web series below: