I spend almost 300 days a year on the road filming our original series, “OhThePeopleYouMeet” and “Michaela’s Map,” speaking at conferences, appearing on morning shows and every once in a while, taking the odd vacation. That means I spend a lot of time on planes and trains, at airports, restaurants and hotels. Let me paint a frequently experienced picture for you: You are comfy in your seat, eye mask at the ready, and then you spot a sick guy getting on the plane. You know, the one with the really red nose and watery eyes. Your stomach sinks as he approaches your row and of course plunks down in the seat next to you. Even worse, now that you are trapped between him and the window. He sneezes and doesn’t cover his mouth or nose, and you watch as the particles of ickiness explode into the trapped plane air. My cameraman sniggers in the row behind me as he sees the look of disgust across my face. Yeah, you get what I’m throwing down. We’ve all been here before. So, I do the responsible thing and take out my PlaneAire (an all-natural, organic carry-on travel spray that kills 99% of germs on planes and surfaces when traveling) and give a spray to “my space” and my surrounding atmosphere. My cameraman, at first amused, comments, “Oh, that smells nice.”
While I’m happy to be off the plane and away from the trapped, re-circulated air, I find myself in big cosmopolitan cities like London and Istanbul surrounded by millions of people and their germs on the tube, in a taxi or a busy restaurant. Happy to do a little spray down in each instance. I also work in developing places like, Freetown, Sierra Leone, exploring the bustling markets where washing your hands isn’t always an option and filming the endangered Western Chimpanzee who most definitely don’t wash their hands and touch whatever they feel like, like my camera. In the winter, you will find me getting on and off chair lifts while skiing in South Tahoe – think of how many folks are sneezing and wiping their noses on their gloves and then oh so innocently grabbing the chairlift! As if I didn’t notice the boogers on your hand! They laugh and pretend not to notice the freezing snot, I discreetly spray.
While all are well intentioned, during a cooking class on a working farm in Los Cabos, Mexico the chef didn’t see the farmer drop the fresh produce, unwashed on the same table as we were prepping the meal. And let’s face it, things are more lax on safari, in say Botswana when my guide picks up animal feces to point in the direction the elephant went, pulling it apart to show me how fresh it is and what he (the elephant) had for breakfast and then making me a coffee. Right, oh, let me just spray that cup handle before putting it dangerously close to my mouth.
What about scuba diving to see the sea life off the coast of Mooloolaba, Australia? Well this means I’m physically putting a mask in my mouth that hundreds of strangers have also put in their mouths. There is some sanitation process by the rental company sure, but I like to go the extra mile. All of these #magicalmoments and #transformativetravel experiences are gross, you say? Maybe, but at least PlaneAire kills 99.99% of harmful bacteria before it makes contact with me on the road.
I may not be able to control that my fellow passenger parental units didn’t teach him manners growing up and he is blissfully unaware of the germs he is passing along to innocent bystanders on planes, or even an animal like a great ape playing with his poop and then touching my camera, but I can control my space and what I put back out in the places I visit, including my choice in a sanitizer that is made from 100% organic ingredients. I call it being responsible, for me and my fellow citizens.
To summarize, I spend a good majority of my life surrounded by millions of people. As the founder of a company called OhThePeopleYouMeet, you’d be right to assume that I shake hands and hold strangers’ babies. While I am a supporter of hand sanitizer, I can’t very well go around rubbing a gel on my neighbor in flight or the chimp who plays with his poop, SO… a discrete, mild scented spray comes in mighty handy in most of the situations I find myself in, including these very real moments on the road. In short, I get around and I am not about to let some nasty germs take me down. #ProudSupporter of PlaneAire, let’s #ShareTheAire
About Michaela Guzy
Michaela is the Founder, Executive Producer + Chief Content Creator of two original series, Michaela’s Map and OhThePeopleYouMeet. Her shows speak to the wanderlust in us all and ignites a passion for global connections and sustainable and immersive travel. Her travels and episodes have covered destinations worldwide, including London, Istanbul, Freetown, Sierra Leone, South Tahoe, Los Cabos, Mexico, Botswana, Mooloolaba, Australia.