One of OneSeed’s newest additions to the team, Cat Wile, is our operations guru. Born and raised in a small town in chilly Massachusetts, she set her sights on migrating south, finding herself down in North Carolina. Graduating from Elon University with an International Business degree, she then took up employment with a large firm in Charlotte. Between her studies and demanding career, she still managed to explore the world, spending five months in China learning Mandarin and visiting Mexico, Peru, Turkey, Greece, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. Most recently she has made the journey west with two kayaks and a bike strapped to her car, ready to experience a new city. OneSeed is pumped to have her on board. We found out a little more about Cat in this short interview.
1) What was one of your most memorable experiences traveling?
One of the most memorable moments was in China outside of a monastery in the small town of Xi’ahe. I was traveling along the Silk Road and stopped briefly in this small mountain village in northwest China. There was a Buddhist prayer circle in session, creating a sense of calm and tranquility. I sat on the steps of the monastery, taking in the serenity, with nothing but my journal, when an old local man and a small girl came up and sat with me. We watched the sunrise together and even though we didn’t speak the other’s language, we still sat contently together and shared the peaceful moment. Everything was right with the world. It is still a vivid memory, from the sounds and smells to the sight of the the rosy cheeks of the local people.
2) Which OneSeed trip entices you the most?
All of them! But if I had to choose, it would be the Trek and Sip in Chile. The lake region is very appealing to me. I love the combination of mountain biking, trekking, enjoying the stunning views, and being among the local people. I’m drawn to the sustainable nature of all of the treks and how we focus on protecting and conserving the beauty. This one is a great combination of so many great elements. And of course, wine!
3) Has anything uncomfortable or embarrassing happened to you while traveling?
When I was in China everyone was really fascinated with me and my fellow travelers. They would touch my blond hair and couldn’t get over how tall my friend was. We looked like martians or a walking circus. They loved to take pictures with us, hand us their babies and take pictures of us with their babies, or simply just hand us their babies. The curious thing about these babies is that they don’t where diapers. A woman once handed me her baby and suddenly I felt wetness coming from the little one. I realized this child was peeing on me and handed him off as quickly as possible.
4) Why do you travel?
The world is a big, complicated place, and the only way to truly understand it is to travel. The experience of exploring new places and meeting people of different backgrounds is a valuable gift and it’s the only way to truly learn about the world. Every time I go somewhere I grow and learn more about the world and myself. Plus, I love food and trying cuisine from far off lands.
5) Is there anything you absolutely can’t stand?
[No hesitation with this question]
-Mayo or anything with mayo in it. I cannot stand it. It grosses me out.
-Mimes. They creep me out. So do clowns and mascots. So creepy!
-Dolls. Also creepy.
-And spiders. I’ve had bad experiences with them being way too close for comfort.