Meet Monica Fernandez Chantada, a master of reinvention and growth. She'll inspire you with her journey to the life she wanted from Madrid HR Specialist to Nashville, Tennessee teacher to Camino de Santiago Guide/Life Coach/Airbnb Super Host in gorgeous Galicia. Learn how Spain is coping with the pandemic, how to choose the Camino right for you with her company, Spanish Steps, and how to explore the world, her country, and her backyard. Join the conversation as we relive terrific treks together across three continents and pump you up for the next quest of your own! Music Credits: Carole Edwards, "Come and Run Away with Me," Chris Haugen, "Casablanca Caravan," Dan Lebowitz, "Mysteries" To watch the Skype interview with photos go here. Photo Credits: Cindy McCain and Monica Chantada
Note: This episode is available on YouTube (see link on podcast website) and includes photos, videos, and Skype interview video.
Welcome! Sometimes we have to get lost for a while to live found and free.Here we talk about essential journeys that lead us home to the people we were created to be. My guests, masters of reinvention and growth, will share their #travel go-to places and give insider tips on where and how to take timeouts in their backyards. They’ll inspire and empower you to plan your new adventure to find relationships, rejuvenation, rest--whatever you seek. You’ll be encouraged to take what I call "beauty breaks for the soul." Today we're off to Spain.
I’m Cindy McCain, travel writer and blogger at SouthernGirlGoneGlobal.com where I share my journey as an explorer of 27 countries, former expat, and empty nest survivor. When my children flew away, I did, too. I landed in Morocco. After two years there and one in the Caribbean, I’m back in Nashville teaching university English, telling travel tales, and coaching others as they write theirs.
I’m so excited to introduce you to some of the colorful cohorts I’ve met from around the world whose heads and hearts push me to press on in growth, live by my core values, never settle. They make me laugh and no matter how far or long we’re apart, they remain my ride or die friends.
We’ll start with where they are, where they’ve been, and how they got there. I will ask them to describe their trajectories using Joseph Campbell’s stages of the hero’s journey--the way he said we follow our bliss. I’ll ask guests when they heard the call to a different life, what pushed them to cross the threshold into a new world, who became mentors and allies as they faced testing, whether or not they found what they were looking for, and how their lives have changed since.
Today’s guest is….
Monica Fernandez Chantada
4:15 Meet Moni in beautiful Vigo, Spain, which is in the province of Galicia, Bucket List worthy for its mountains, coast, Celtic ruins, wine, and wonderful people. Through here pilgrims since the 9th century have traveled to the Cathedral in Santiago on the Camino or St. James’ Way. Monica is a Life Coach, CaminoGuide for Spanish Steps and an Airbnb Super Host .
She’ll tell us about reinventing herself more than once, international teaching and world travel. We’ve wandered 3 continents in the last decade together from the Sahara Desert to the Islands of the Gods. I’m so glad she’s here!
Learn how Spaniards do Lockdown (started March 14)
Note: Go to Chapters to skip to sections noted below.
6:20 Memories of Madrid: Attention chocolate lovers!
7:05 How Moni and I met in Nashville, Tennessee
9:30 Moni’s US Teaching and Traveling; Alaska, Peru, Mexico, Jamaica, and the Bahamas
11:00 The Wanderer Returns Home to Vigo
11:30 How to Reinvent a Life (Again)
From Journalism to Working in Corporate Human Resources Job to Teaching Spanish is the US to Camino de Santiago Guide
“I always say ‘Yes!’ Every challenge, I take it!”--Moni
13:30 Effect of Pandemic on 2020 Camino Tourism
14:00 Moni’s Call to Another Life, Spanish Financial Crisis, Realizing in India what she really wanted
15:30 Moni’s Mom’s Advice
17:20 Pandemic Effects on Finances and Family
20:00 How Emergency State in Spain differs from US Lockdown
22:30 Dealing with Solitary Confinement after divorce
25:43 Beautiful Vigo--My visit with Moni and Ale on #St.John’sEve / #SummerSolstice
26:28 Meeting Moni in Porto, Portugal
27:28 Cies,Islands--one of my favorite travel experiences ever
28:30 Spain Photos from Other Journeys
29:37 Eating and Socializing in Spain
32:15 #Toledo --Day trip from #Madrid
34:40 Camino options based on distance, routes, fitness, purpose
40:08 Photos of Coastal Camino through Galicia; Pilgrims; Goals
45:40 My journeys with Moni: Morocco
49:22 Moni’s Other Travels for #Growth ; Backpacking at 37 in India
50:20 Travel Deals Now
52:30 Moni’s Call; Nashville, Kenya, Japan, New Zealand.
What’s on her Bucket List now
Moni: “I’m rich because I have freedom.”
1:03:00 Healthcare in Spain
1:05:00 What Moni would tell a 20something daughter or her 20something self
1:06:00 Join Spain's 8 PM Lockdown Celebration of Solidarity and Spirit
Contact Moni: firstname.lastname@example.org or Cindy: email@example.com