Transcript for Autistic Travel Goddess

Kelly Bron Johnson (00:00):
Welcome to episode 15 of the intersections on the spectrum podcast. The intersections on the spectrum podcast is the brainchild of Doug Blecher and Kelly Bron Johnson created to discuss intersectional issues within the autistic community and give visibility to commonly marginalize, repressed, underrepresented, or erased identities and issues. We aim to introduce you to the people and stories we didn't know about, but needed to hear and hopes that by seeing yourself represented in the community, allows you to feel seen.

Doug Blecher (00:29):
Today. Uh, Shalese joins us . Shalese goes by Autistic Travel Goddess on social media, and she is an author ,YouTuber, and content creator. Welcome Shalese.

Autistic Travel Goddess (00:44):
Thanks for having me.

Doug Blecher (00:45):
Absolutely. So we always want to start out intersections by learning, um, what your identities and intersections are?

Autistic Travel Goddess (00:54):
Yeah, so I identify as a cisgender female. I am African American, autistic as well. So those are all my identities.

Kelly Bron Johnson (01:01):
Okay. So this is like a really special episode for me, just because travel is also one of my special interests. I used to run a blog. It's still up, but I don't, I don't add to it anymore, but it was solo woman traveler, and it's really to encourage women to travel alone and to do it safely and all that. So I'm going to add in some other interesting tidbits about specifically autistic travel later, but anyway, we learned about you through your Instagram account the autistic travel goddess. So what is it about travel that has allowed you to be so passionate about it?

Autistic Travel Goddess (01:31):
It all started because, you know, I was feeling lonely a lot, growing up, being autistic and being told about I'm different being bullied a lot in school.

Autistic Travel Goddess (01:39):
And so I spent all my time delving in my special interest of geography and places to travel. I would read geography, geography, books, textbooks, encyclopedias, and watch things like national geographic and the travel channel. And, you know, I felt this attachment to places, you know, like the nature and the geographic features of a place, and it would get to the point where I was like, they were my friends. Like
I felt a connection to place that I don't feel that I didn't feel when it came to people. And, you know, somehow places maybe feel less home and it made me feel more connected to world. And that's where my interest in travel came from. That's when I decided that it was going to be my mission to travel the world when I got grown up.

Kelly Bron Johnson (02:17):
Very cool.
Doug (02:18):
Your geography teacher must have loved you.
Autistic Travel Goddess (02:22):
Oh, heck yeah. I was, I was one of his favorite students that always got A's in geography classes, even in college.
Doug Blecher (02:29):
The travel experience, you know, is usually described as one that, you know, to enjoy with family friends or, or whoever. And that's what makes it in it partially an enjoyable experience. So, yeah. However you mentioned on your Instagram that you travel alone, why do you prefer to do this?

Autistic Travel Goddess (02:48):
I prefer to do it because, you know, travel, you know, it takes them out of adjustment as it is. And I prefer to travel when I would just because it eliminates the need for me to mask in front of someone else. And it allows me the flexibility to plan things on my own and not feel this pressure to, I guess, dance by someone else's rules. Like it allows me the space to be myself and, you know, be able to explore at my own measure with, you know, rather than have to hear to someone else's plan. So I find it easier to travel alone just because it takes that added stress away from the trip.

Kelly Bron Johnson (03:23):
I can relate to that so much. I do love to travel with certain people, but very particular. Um, certainly, you know, like they just have to be on the same level as me kind of like, we need to be hungry at the same time.

Kelly Bron Johnson (03:37):
We need to go to the bathroom at the same time. Like those kinds of things, you know, like I don't want to be dragged around places, but like, I love to travel with my kids. I just, I love like, I take them on little individual trips every year and I love that one-on-one time with them. And I hope it feeds them to want to also travel when they get older. So, yeah, that's fun. So recently you posted about traveling to several different cities of Rhode Island and Maine that are traditionally thought of as a fluent white vacation spots. During your time, you only saw three fellow black faces. What was the response received as a black woman in these spaces? Just before I let you answer, I've gone places where I count, I will count on one hand. I'm like, oh, theres black person, oh, there's an Asian person.

Kelly Bron Johnson (04:22):
Oh, look, there's another one. Yeah. I have gone places like that where I'm like, I can, if I can count on one hand goodness. Anyway, but yeah, I'll let you answer.

Autistic Travel Goddess (04:32):
So I was really surprised Maine that was really relevant. Well received there. Like I didn't run into any type of unfriendliness when I was there and I felt very welcomed and also to get the stares or anything like that, but I expected to get, so I was surprised by that now Rhode Island, and I think this has something to do socioeconomically because Maine, I mean, there, there's more of an affluent culture in Maine, but it's not as more prevalent in Rhode Island in the Rhode Island beach towns. Um, I went to most beach towns in Rhode Island and I actually felt welcomed there. Like I didn't have any issues there. My only issue came when I was in Watch Hill Rhode Island, which is actually known, it's like the most
affluent beach out there. And it's so important that you have to pay to Hyde park there, you have to pay dash to get on the beach. So that tells you like what kind of culture you're dealing with.

Autistic Travel Goddess (05:20):
But, um, yeah, I, you know, started out nice. I went for a walk the morning going to the beach and it has the day went on and more people started coming out. I started coming across more rude people who felt really entitled. I ran in to particular this woman who I was going to speed limit, trying to find my parking space. And this woman behind me was just being really rude and tailgating me. And then I had these people when I was trying to parallel park and they wouldn't even give me the space to do it. And they were being rude. And as I was walking down to like go to the beach and, you know, walking along
the sidewalk, you know, no one wanted to give me any space. And people were just like, kind of trampling over me. Even though I think I was moving out reasonable speed. But it's like, I just felt like people there were making it clear to me that I was not welcome there. And this may not be everyone else's experience, but I just felt like after awhile I was made to feel unwelcome and people were just like, letting me know that I'm other than them. And I ended up leaving early because I couldn't handle it. Like it was getting on my nerves. . And I guess people sometimes act that way.

Doug Blecher (06:26):
I've never been to a beach where you have to pay to like being on the beach.

Autistic Travel Goddess (06:30):
Yeah. That, that should have been my first hint. I've seen that I had to pay to beyond that.

Kelly Bron Johnson (06:40):
Thinking like in the Caribbean, it's kind of normal. Like they'll have day rates, but except for Barbados, which is where my family's from Barbados has a policy, the all beaches are public on all beaches are free to the people and the tourists will have their own little spots, but you can stop anywhere in Barbados and walk in. And if you see the beach go on the beach, it is, it is yours. Your country. So it's you're and that's it. And that's, I really love that policy.

Autistic Travel Goddess (07:09):
Right. And beaches in Rhode Island, I've seen that more frequently than I've seen that because I've never seen that before, but you have to pay to be on the beach. But even when I went to Newport beach, I've seen some sections that were only for residents only because there are a lot of residents that live there, but I didn't have a problem there because like Newport, this was pretty empty.

Autistic Travel Goddess (07:27):
And when I went to Narragansett, it was pretty laid back and friendly that it's better waves. And, you know, people would have a friendlier side and have the issues they're at when they're actually at that beach. I didn't see anything about having to pay or like be a resident there as well. So that was different, you know, that was kind of normal for me because I'm used to public beaches, but I understand why, you know, they make the beaches that way. Like I can kind of understand maybe they want a certain atmosphere, but my main problem was just how I was treated by the people there. You know, at Watch Hill, I felt like it was mostly racially motivated that they were treating me that way. Cause I was the only black person on there.

Doug Blecher (08:04):
Now Shalese, you've done a lot of traveling. So what, what did you think are some of the biggest challenges of traveling for autistics?

Autistic Travel Goddess (08:14):
First of all, I think that getting adapting to a new routine routine is a challenge. It is a huge challenge because you're not only going to the new place, but you're upgrading yourself from your typical routine. And you're having to adjust to, you know, new food textures, new smells, new sounds, and you're having to deal with crowds and a lot of sensory overload in certain places in the process of traveling in
order to use an airport or if you're in traffic or at an attraction. So there's that. And then the other challenge that a lot of people in the audience have is the affordability of travel because a lot of 85% of autistic people are either unemployed or underemployed. And so that makes it difficult to before travel
for that reason.

Kelly Bron Johnson (08:55):
I was just gonna say that that's a barrier for sure. And then there's, I think there's the barrier of, of affordability, but also from what I've noticed in the autistic community, a lot of us underestimate our abilities, right?

Kelly Bron Johnson (09:07):
There are some parents who have been very well-intentioned, but have almost, almost put their autistic kids in a bubble. Um, and that has limited them. They feel that maybe they can't do it, you know? And so they never get an opportunity to try.

Autistic Travel Goddess (09:21):
Right. They figured that out. And I have the confidence that you just bought a, you know, instilling the confidence in them to be able to travel because, you know, I had, my aunts were like that too. Like for the longest time they were, I guess, trying to hold me in a bubble because they were scared for my safety, but eventually I pretty much them to let me travel and let me go off to school in another state
and all imagine I was like, I pretty much had to spend my weights, but a lot of parents not understanding attention behind it, but it does hinder the autistic person's confidence, you know, by making them afraid to try something new. And that's another barrier. I'm glad you brought that up because that is that's

Kelly Bron Johnson (10:02):
Okay. So there are so many benefits of travel. What do you think of some of the things that have improved your life or skills that you've learned by your travel experiences? I've definitely built confidence and self esteem by going to new places that I never thought I would go to and learning new things, and then thought I would learn to do things I never thought I would do. Like I went parasailing when I was in The Bahamas and went snorkling in between two continental. When I was in Iceland and because of my special interests in geology and geography, you know, I got to actually step live, it's a science book. And I was able to explain and see what I knew and what I learned come to life. And so that
made me feel super competent and not to mention stepping out of my comfort zone and learning how to advocate for myself. It might be, and also meeting people which helped me with improving my social skills. When I meat people during my travels.

Doug Blecher (10:54):
I don't think I'll be doing the parasailing anytime soon, but I love everything else that you just said. So when you travel there, you're going to so many new environments and that can definitely cause, um, lots of anxiety, one of these new environments, um, are hotels, what are things, a hotel, a hotel maybe can do to make your experience as good as possible?

Autistic Travel Goddess (11:22):
You know what, right now I love what Hilton is doing right now ever since the pandemic. Again, they have this feature on their app. When you book a hotel room, you could actually do a digital check-in and you can put your card information in the date and everything, and you could skip the checkout line. You can actually like get your additional key, open your door and enter the hotel with the digital app. You can totally skip the front desk if you want to. And that helps me out a lot because you know, when I get off a plane and it's been a long day at the airport, I don't want to have to deal with lines and crowds. And you know, sometimes I don't want to interact other people. So that helps me out a lot. I, you know, having to skip that process and number two, what I also think that they should do is maybe I would love it.

Autistic Travel Goddess (12:03):
If they would offer our favorite snacks, you know, like offer, ask the customer what they like and offer them, offer it to them in their room, upon arrival, you know, stuff like that, little things that make a difference. It makes one feel somewhat at ease with the new change of routine.

Kelly Bron Johnson (12:17):
So I can echo that it was hotel X in Toronto that I went to. It was very expensive, but I did pay for it. It was business anyway. And it was amazing. It was one of the most amazing experiences I've ever had at a hotel because you walk in, somebody greets them at the door. And I remember he's like, hi, my name is Peter or whatever. I'm going to end this long like corridor to get to the front desk. And he's like, I'm going to help you with your bag. And I'm going to introduce you to like, I dunno, Vincent, whatever his name was at the front desk.

Kelly Bron Johnson (12:45):
And I get there and they said, oh, you know, you know, you must be tired. We understood that your, your flight was canceled and this is a business thing and whatever, and you just probably want to be home. And I'm like, yeah. How did you know? They, she was like, can I have your cell phone number? And I said, sure. And instantly they, I get a text. And then I get shown up to my room and I go in there
and the text is basically saying, if you need anything, you can text us. I said, you can call us for sure. But otherwise you can just text us. And then they had a thing on the TV where I could, I could communicate with them. I could see the menu. And it was just like, I didn't have to talk to anybody if I didn't want to, I can just text. And I was like, okay my gosh, it was like, it was one of the coolest experiences ever.

Autistic Travel Goddess (13:27):

That is so perfect. And I feel like more hotels need to offer that. And I don't understand why the rest of
the hotel chains have not followed suit during this pandemic. Yeah. That sounds like a dream. What you were offered.

Kelly Bron Johnson (13:40):
It was, it was amazing. It's too bad. I couldn't have stayed longer or stay again, but we'll see. Maybe by mentioning this they'll let me come back. I don't know.

Kelly Bron Johnson (13:49):
So now you've been up to up to 10, 10 countries by this point. So what countries have you been to? And what's the next one kind travel to?

Autistic Travel Goddess (13:57):
So where do I begin? So I've been to Scotland, Austria and the Netherlands, um, Czech Republic, Germany, Luxembourg. I've been to China. Then I've been to The Bahamas and I've been to Iceland and Canada where I'm interested in going next. I've actually been, eyeing the African nation. I really would love to go and see the Seychelles islands in east Africa, Tanzania. And I want to see Kenya as well. I'm
dying to see those three places.

Kelly Bron Johnson (14:26):
I want to go to Zanzibar.

Autistic Travel Goddess (14:30):
Antartica is my dream. Oh my God. Like, can't wait to go to Antarctica.

Kelly Bron Johnson (14:30):

Autistic Travel Goddess (14:33):
Oh my gosh, that's, that's a rough trip. That's a rough trip. But that's what I love about it. Like you get to
be on edge and be really in touch with like the earth in its raw state.

Kelly Bron Johnson (14:44):
Like, wow. There, I would love to Luxemburg, I actually have one of my guidebooks, uh, you know, cause I, I liked going to all these little European countries.

Autistic Travel Goddess (14:53):
Luxembourg was gorgeous. And the thing this what's interesting about and Luxembourg is it's actually two levels. Its this a two-story city Basically. Okay. And the city was me, like I'm a castle crater. It was made from an old all castle room. And that's why it's really fascinating when you see it.

Autistic Travel Goddess (15:13):

Okay. And so what made you go to, let's say, I dunno, you went to Scotland or you went to Czech Republic . So like, I don't know the stuff out there. So like what, yeah. What was it about those places that made you want to go there?

Autistic Travel Goddess (15:28):
Well, um, I've always wanted to see Austria, to be honest because of the beautiful mountains and just the gorgeousness there.

Autistic Travel Goddess (15:35):
And, you know, I took German when I was in high school and college, so I wanted to chance to use my German skills. Germany I really liked the culture there. And what I really wanted to see about Czech Republic was I felt like Czech Republic was a little bit different than other countries that I've been to in the sense of the culture, just the style and the way that, you know, the languages and just like how it looks. I wanted to see more, I was really interested in that just cause how different It is from Western Europe. It was more of an Eastern European type vibe. And I was really interested in getting to see that, wow.

Kelly Bron Johnson (16:09):
So I speak German too. I don't know. I went to Germany and I want it to go to Austria. It's hilarious story. When I called the embassy, because my passport was going to expire in like six months. And for some countries you can't go into them with your passport. It's about to expire in six months. So I called, I called the Austrian embassy and I'm like, you know, I'm asking him if it's a problem. And if he stops me, he's like, are you sure you're not talking about Australia?

Kelly Bron Johnson (16:36):
And I'm like, no, no, I want, he's like, you want to come to Austria? And I was like, yeah, this poor guy. And it was kind of funny, but yeah, I went to, yeah, I'm kind of curious about your experience in Germany. Cause when I, when I went to Germany, you know, they, it was a lot of curiosity about my, my race, my ethnicity, maybe they thought I was a native of, cause I didn't know it was from Canada and
they're like, oh, are you like indigenous? Are you? Cause the Germans have this weird relationship with Canadian Indigenous people where that they want like some, some groups are trying to be like Indigenous and, it's a little weird, a little strange. But um, yeah, so they were like asking me if that's what I was and things like that. And, and then there was like the skinheads in Berlin that I was a little, little freaked out about personally.

Kelly Bron Johnson (17:28):
Yeah. But I only, I only saw them once and they didn't bother me, but yeah, that's the, you know, those kinds of concerns that we have when we travel.

Autistic Travel Goddess (17:36):
You know, I was surprised I didn't want it to just get hand types in Germany. I actually spent most of my time in Cologne, Germany and you know, Munich and the countryside. Okay. What's now since almost the city, you know, I didn't really have anybody, you know, treat me any differently and I didn't have any, my most people welcomed me with open arms and I had awkward, friendly conversation there. But once I got asked to countryside of Germany, like I felt like there were people who were not as welcoming to me. Like I think they, I couldn't tell if they were curious or if they thought I shouldn't be in their areas. So it was definitely a different vibe, like out in the countryside, you know, when I was traveling on my way to Austria, you know, there's of course the rural area between Cologne and Austria.

Autistic Travel Goddess (18:20):
Yeah. Like the rural areas were yeah. You know, I did not feel like I'm welcome out there.
Kelly Bron Johnson (18:26):
But I find here in Canada, when I encounter, uh, German people or German tourists, they're mostly like I speak German to them. And they were kind of looking at me like, what you speak German? Where'd you learn that like that, it's just like totally confused.

Autistic Travel Goddess (18:41):
I felt German in Germany. They actually will start speaking English to me when I spoke German. Oh yeah. Oh, I think it's because they appreciated the fact that I was willing to speak their language or maybe they, you know, it could have been the fact that they appreciated it or it could have been the fact that they couldn't understand my accent.

Doug Blecher (19:00):
Well, I'm, I'm still stuck on the parasailing. So my question for Shalese about that. Was that like something you always wanted to do?

Autistic Travel Goddess (19:14):
It's something that see, I love Heights, like ever since I was a kid, I love roller coasters always had to get on the highest roller coaster. And I, you know, it was into skydiving, bungee jumping. Like I just love heights. And I loved thrilling activities that are considered dangerous and having, I'm not to bring
something up that a lot that might be controversial, but speaking of that. I don't react to it the way normal people do. Like I don't scream or get scared, like most other people do because ever since I was young, like I know a lot of autistic people can relate to this, but ever since I was a kid, I did not, I guess I had a , you just sort of sense of the year or something because I did not feel to save since a few that
most other people would feel when it comes to things like that.

Autistic Travel Goddess (19:53):
And that has a lot to do with my ability to do things like that.

Kelly Bron Johnson (19:57):
So that, so now you're bringing up a really interesting point that I was thinking about before I find I have encountered, I don't know if it is not a subset, but like there's a certain profile it seams of specifically autistic woman that are, that, that travel and they travel alone and that they were kind of like, like us.
And so people always ask me are, you know, are you scared? Cause like I've been to some, you know, pretty out in their countries. Like I've been to Yemen, I've been to Baraka by myself. I went to China, you know, things like that. And they go, well, aren't you scared? And I kind of always feel that the world or people in general, regardless of their circumstances are overwhelmingly kind. Yes, I've had experiences, you know, I was grabbed and things like that, but I believe that like 95% of people, our kind and I also, so I don't think it's very interesting cause I've been out with people with, you know, with friends and things and let's say like, somebody like a homeless person approaches us and my friend would be very, very
scared in the situation when I'm just like, oh whatever, you know, I'm gonna talk to him like a person or whatever.

Kelly Bron Johnson (21:05):
And I don't get that same vibe. And I feel that I'm able to read people in such a way that I can tell if they want to harm me or not. You know, somebody just being weird or, or perhaps, uh, you know, inebriated or whatever. That's different from somebody who wants to harm me. And I think, you know, even though we say that, you know, autistic people, aren't great at reading body language, things like that,
for whatever reason, I'm not scared as in situations of people, even if they're acting kind of aggressive or whatever, I feel that I can kind of deescalate it and I can kind of read them and I'd be like, okay, this is a
situation where I'm going to ignore. This is a situation where I need to run. And this is a situation where I can just talk to the person and then they're going to calm down and it's going to be okay.

Kelly Bron Johnson (21:51):
Like I find that maybe I have that skill.
Autistic Travel Goddess (21:53):
Yes. And I know for me, I tend to rely on, I guess, logic, so to speak, like, because I'm not gonna be good at intuition like that or reading people I tend to rely on logic. And I don't really get scared of someone. You know, who's an inebriated or someone who maybe I guess, acting a little weird. I tend to only get scared if, if I see them carrying a weapon or if I see someone carrying, you know, or shouting or being aggressive in some way, then that's the only time that I, you know, tell myself, oh, it's time to leave or it's time to get out of the way or it's time to, you know, exit the situation that it has to be something visible for me to be able to tell them when it's time to exit a situation has to be something plainly obvious.

Autistic Travel Goddess (22:39):
Otherwise I know how to really enforce something and not let it get to me. I had a guy when I was in Iceland, I was at a coffee shop in Iceland and I met this one guy who, you know, it seemed like we were friendly at first. You know, we were talking, having coffee together. Hadn't we were just like having a conversation. And I went to, you know, I left and he, you know, found me on Instagram and wanted me
to go and meet with him again. And um, just like I planned to do this, this excersion, I did not want to meet, I did not plan to meet with you i'm planning to do this thing that I scheduled. So that was going to do, and he kept like sending me messages, begging me to like come over and you know, begging me to do this, that, and I just ignored it because I'm like, yeah, I made plans.

Autistic Travel Goddess (23:20):
I did not include you in the plan. So yeah, no, I'm just going to ignore you. And shortly after that, he sent me a bunch of messages, cursing me out, like basically telling me that, calling me all kind of names, you
know, all kinds of sexist names and stuff like that. So of course I blocked him, but behaving like that and lets me know. Okay. Yeah, yes I'm glad that I did not go and meet up with him because yeah, I think it was, it might've been a cultural thing, but I felt like, yeah, he was entitled to a tourist his time because he thought that I was a tourist. And so he felt like he was that I was just caught up and just do what he
told me to do. And I did not do that.

Autistic Travel Goddess (23:56):
So right. Or people have this assumption too, that you're lonely or something or that you don't know, people that you want to go back to or things like that, you know, with, I'm always kind of clear.

Autistic Travel Goddess (24:05):
I think that we're running away from something or that don't have any friends at home or that we're lonely or that we don't have any kind of life at home or something, but she just naturally.

Kelly Bron Johnson (24:14):
That's it. I mean, I mean maybe there are people like that, but that's not, that's not us. I was like, I'm like, no, I want to go back home. I'm good. Thanks.

Autistic Travel Goddess (24:22):
I haven't traveled most, give me a break from something things like if anything travel makes, when I, when I travel, I am running away from things that made me unhappy. I'm not going to lie. Like I'm running away from things like the justice in America. And just like the way the system is, which is a whole another podcast. Like some things I don't like, and I tend to run away from it. And I, when I see
things like, you know, police brutality and you know, like racism and whatnot and like, yes, I'm running away from that because I don't want to be a part of that or seeing that. So, yeah. And I tend to think that when I travel, I'm running towards something that makes me happy. I'm running toward a passion
and a great life. And so I don't necessarily think I'm running away from something I think running towards something that's best for me.

Kelly Bron Johnson (25:09):
Yeah. That's cool. That's a, that's a great way to put it. And then just before we get to the last question I, so I'm Canadian. So where in Canada have you been?

Autistic Travel Goddess (25:16):
I have been to Toronto, Quebec city, um, Montreal and Quebec city. My favorite city of all was my Vancouver. Oh yeah. Okay.

Kelly Bron Johnson (25:28):
We're just, that's what I was counting. I was counting black people in Vancouver, Victoria. I was counting black people in Victoria for sure.

Autistic Travel Goddess (25:36):
Oh yes. I was in Victoria as well. Victoria is gorgeous.

Kelly Bron Johnson (25:39):
But it's wonderful. But yeah, I was counting on like one hand .

Autistic Travel Goddess (25:44):
I thought I had to count. But when I got to Victoria, I really counted exactly Quebec city. I did a little bit of counting too, Montreal's not so much to Toronto, not so much but Quebec city.

Autistic Travel Goddess (25:56):
Yeah. I wanted to see, um, you know, if it wasn't for the pandemic, I should be planning to go to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. I wanted to see that. But you know, but of course the pandemic got in the way, but I got a feel I'm going to be doing counting there as well.

Kelly Bron Johnson (26:11):
For sure. But Nova Scotia is really super interesting because they have black Nova Scotians that were there. I don't know, like the 16 hundreds or something about that. That's where I got the name Afrikville though. Nova Scotia from right.

Kelly Bron Johnson (26:25):
That got burned down. So I feel does not exist because not just, they burnt it. The city burnt it. The city did not want them there anyway. Oh, that's Doug. It's a whole other story. The podcast we need Shalese
to come, please come back. So we could talk about all of these dark moments in Canadian history.

Kelly (26:43):
Halifax. I've been to Halifax and I've loved it. I've gone twice now. I love it. I love it. Yeah. So much fun. Just a great place. Very friendly and lost to see. So for sure.

Autistic Travel Goddess (26:53):
they're not having a heat wave i bet.

Kelly Bron Johnson (26:56):
I don't know, but we've had our hottest temperature in Canada ever cause all across, like, so now it was raining now it just got really dark. We're raining here now. But like BC was like, they registered at like 45.7 degrees Celsius. So it's like a hundred and something Fahrenheit or are you in BC? So I I'm not in
BC, but my, I have family in BC, but my, um, I'm in Montreal. So we're getting like average, like 35 degrees Celsius, which is not abnormal, but it's not that normal either. If that makes sense anyway. Right. Yeah. So let me know when you come to.

Autistic Travel Goddess (27:36):
I've been to Montreal twice and yeah, when I come back out and we'll be happy to let you know. Okay.

Doug Blecher (27:41):
So Shalese, before we let you go, um, we're always thinking about stories to highlight here on intersections on the spectrum. What would be some stories that you would want to hear?

Autistic Travel Goddess (27:51):
Me personally? I would love to hear stories of autistic people who are professionals in their careers or successful entrepreneurs who are autistic, because I think that, you know, it will be really helpful to see more of that content for once just because I'm sick and tired of seeing the story of, you know, the
tragedy story of people with autism, not being able to do much. And I want us to, to showcase more people who are doing, you know, out there doing the best they can in life and killing it in this world. 

Kelly Bron Johnson (28:20):
I'm going to recommend that you listened to our podcast with Maisie because she created a whole series, like a whole workshop on that. How to become an entrepreneur. There's a specific name for autistic people as well. Okay, perfect. So yeah, she's amazing. And I'm an I'm here in Canada. I'm trying to make an autistic entrepreneur directory. So I have the autistic entrepreneurs network and I'm trying to help encourage entrepreneurship in the autistic community.

Autistic Travel Goddess (28:46):
So something I'm passionate about because I, myself am an entrepreneur. I, it, that's something I've been super passionate about for years.

Kelly Bron Johnson (28:53):
We will have to have you back Shalese. We're going to talk entrepreneurship next time.
Autistic Travel Goddess (28:57):
And life in Canada.

Doug Blecher (29:01):
That's part two. Well, well, well, thanks so much for joining us Shalese. Loved the conversation.

Autistcic Travel Goddess (29:08):
Thank you so much for inviting me to the podcast