Traveling immerses us in the world, but sometimes in the less eventful moments in between destinations, we just need to escape. “The Layover” is a weekly roundup of books, music, podcasts, and other forms of entertainment brought to you by your favorite world travelers.
This week, we reached out to Shayna Pitch, a freelance photographer and graphic designer from Toronto, Canada. Shayna specializes in portrait photography and believes that it’s the people that can make any destination truly memorable. Today, she discusses the entertainment she turns to during travel’s quieter moments.
It may be a cliché choice, but “Into the Wild” is truly one of my all-time favorite films. I was in university when the movie, which chronicles the adventurous years in the life of the mysterious Chris McCandless, was first released but didn’t watch it until years later. I believe that timing is everything in life, and it wasn’t long after watching it that I decided to start traveling.
Like Jan says in the movie, “If you want something in life, reach out and grab it.”
My husband and I took this advice, packed our bags, and moved to South Korea, which then led to journeys involving Japanese snow monkeys, the beaches of Thailand, the back alleys of Havana, and, of course, the beauty of Bali.
But the movie also does a great job of highlighting the importance of the relationships you form as you go through life. Throughout our travels, we have met so many amazing people who have opened up their lives and homes to us. Traveling isn’t just about the natural beauty of each place you visit, it’s also about the connections you make along the way and how those individuals affect you.
Having spent over 100 hours on airplanes — I’ve done a lot of flying this year — podcasts really came in handy. I stumbled across “Oh No Ross and Carrie” a few years ago, and have been an avid listener ever since.
In each episode, the two hosts, Ross Blocher and Carrie Poppy, go into hilarious detail about their undercover research on topics ranging from conspiracies to religion, including bizarre things like the flex belt and laughter yoga.
The podcast includes several multi-episode series, which are great when you have 30 hours of traveling ahead of you. If I had to choose, I would recommend downloading their 10-part series on Scientology, as well as some of their episodes from a UFO convention in the desert.
Being a photographer means spending a good amount of time on my computer editing my photos, which is why good music is a must.
On a search for new tunes one day, I came across a YouTube channel called Mahogany Sessions. Not only are all of the videos shot beautifully, but the channel highlights an amazing variety of relatively undiscovered indie bands as well as a handful acoustic covers of well-known songs. They upload new videos regularly, so there are always new artists to discover.
If I had to narrow it down, my top recommendations would be: Keaton Henson, Jacob Banks, Aurora, Julien Baker, and St. Paul & the Broken Bones.