Talk about a crazy travel challenge.
Meet Daniel Seddiqui, who is on a quest to work 50 jobs in 50 states in 50 weeks.
Find out how it’s going so far in this interview from Peter Greenberg Worldwide Radio…
PG: Daniel, I have to ask: why?
DS: That does sound crazy when you say it. I couldn’t find a job when I graduated from USC with an economics degree. I traveled around the country trying to get my foot in the door; I lived in five different states, and every state that I lived in, I had a whole new cultural experience. So I got really curious about what other states had to offer, and what America could offer in terms of cultural experiences.
PG: I’m looking at the list and you’re almost there. You’ve worked in Salt Lake City, you were a hydrologist in Denver, and you were a cartographer in Fargo, North Dakota. You were a park ranger in Wyoming, a corn farmer in Omaha, a real estate agent in Boise, Idaho—now this one is interesting—you were a logger in Medford, Oregon and you lived to tell the tale?
DS: Yes, and also a coal miner in West Virginia and a border patrol officer in Arizona. I’ve done a lot of labor-intensive jobs.
PG: Here’s one you wouldn’t get me to do—you were a meat packer in Topeka, Kansas?
DS: Oh, yeah, let’s not talk about that one.
PG: Followed by being a dietitian in Jackson, Mississippi, one of the fattest states in America. What’s left on your list?
DS: I have five more states to go. I’m working with the Democratic Party in New Hampshire, lobster fishing in Maine, I was thinking about doing outdoor photography in Alaska, surfing instructor in Hawaii, and host of Dirty Jobs in California, my home state.
PG: Of all the jobs you’ve done, what’s the one you’d want to do again?
DS: I’ve been thinking back. The place where my personality fit the most and was the most fulfilling was being a dietitian in Mississippi. Just going out there and changing people’s lives was very fulfilling to me, and I could wake up every morning doing that.
PG: Well, you also worked as a child counselor in New Jersey.
DS: That was another one, absolutely. And even showcasing them–the different careers and cultures–inspired the kids because a lot of them feel like they’re going to be stuck in a rut when they become my age.
Learn more about another Great Travel Job: Oral Historian for the Southern Food Alliance. And find out about Southern cuisine with Southern Comfort: Finding Good Food and Down-Home Hospitality on the Road.
PG: So I guess we can take meat packer off the list. And modeling? You were a model?
DS: I would take that off the list; that was hard! Posing for eight hours a day, taking 3,000 different photos. And it was humid out there in North Carolina.
PG: So you can take model off the list, meat packer off the list, coal miner …
DS: Making cheese in Wisconsin. It was backbreaking work, literally. A tall person like me bending over, mixing the curds and whey, was pretty hard. Although fried cheese curds was one of the best dishes I’ve ever had.
PG: Last but not least, you did weddings in Las Vegas.
DS: I was an ordained minister and I married two couples. I also drove a limousine, I was a florist and did some photography that week.
PG: When you’re done, what are you going to do?
DS: Like I said, I’m going to try one of those jobs that suited my personality, like a dietitian in Mississippi.
Learn more about Daniel Seddiqui’s adventures at www.LivingtheMap.com.
You can hear the entire interview on Hour 3 of Peter Greenberg Worldwide Radio: Obama’s Vacation, World Golf, Landscape Architecture, Southern California Hiking.
Check out how to have an adventure like Daniel with Road Work: Unusual Jobs Abroad.
Learn more about traveling to all 50 states in our USA Travel section.