HIGH POINT, N.C. (WGHP) — Growing up in the Greensboro area, Rob Wagner was like a lot of folks – fairly parochial.
He liked North Carolina, had family here and didn’t see himself going too far from home.
But, in a recent conversation, he said, “If you’ve never been out of your country, you don’t know what you’re missing.”
Rob is waaaaayyyyy out of his country. He now lives in Phuket, Thailand, where the Malacca Straight enters into the Andaman Sea. But, in early 2015, he lived and worked in Florida.
“I was a financial advisor,” Wagner remembers. “I was let go from the firm and I said, ‘You know, I’m going to go over there and give Thailand a test run. I don’t speak any Thai, I don’t have any friends or family over here, I didn’t have a passport. And the first thing I did was look for was an English-speaking, English teaching job which I was not cut out for.”
But he began to make some short videos to show friends and family where he was living, for a few months – about 20-seconds long. They became popular enough that he now makes his living creating content mostly for YouTube but some for Instagram and Facebook.
“My #1 video is called, ’13 Reasons Not to Live in Thailand,’ And the premise on that video is, if you come over here with your own country’s mentality, you really need to be flexible and adapt. An example would be, a lot of people think Asian women are very submissive but they’re not! They’re wonderful but they’re very strong.”
Rob now has a life he loves, more than 9,000 miles from where he used to call home.
“I don’t see myself ever coming back to the states, long-term. Only to see family and friends,” he says.
Why not? Things couldn’t be going better for him.
“There was one year I thought, ‘Something bad has to happen to me because life cannot be this good. And my life has been this good for 7 years, now,” Rob says.
See some of his videos and where he now lives in this Social Media Stars edition of the Buckley Report.