PM360 recently spoke to Nicholas Lucente, Sr. Director, Oncology Digital Marketing at Bayer, about his attempt to go pretty much everywhere you possibly can.
PM360: You have a goal to travel to a new country every year. How did that get started?
Nicholas Lucente: About five years ago, my wife and I decided one of our goals together should be to travel to a new country every year so that we can look back and say we’ve experienced the world together. We started off easy by going to Canada and then it blossomed out to England, Israel, China, South Korea, Dubai, Cuba, and the United Arab Emirates.
Of the places you’ve visited so far, which has been your favorite?
Israel because there’s so much history and beauty, plus the food was fantastic and the people were wonderful. It was interesting to see this deep history juxtaposed with modern living. For instance, in Jerusalem you have modern architecture massed together with old-world history going back thousands of years. It was striking to visit archeological sites over 10,000 years old while also experiencing some tremendous technological advances.
Besides your favorite trip, what would you say was your most interesting experience?
Visiting China was an interesting experience because of how different it was compared to our lives in the United States. The food was very different from what I expected, and I really enjoyed trying things that I would have otherwise never had the opportunity. In particular, Shanghai was beautiful and the architecture was unlike anything I’d ever seen. Cuba was another that stood out for how differently they operate compared to the United States. But those experiences taught me to be more open-minded and forget about any preset notions. It also ignited a constant curiosity in me and willingness to ask questions and appreciate all of the different ways to do things.
Do you get any kind of mementos from each country?
We do a couple things. We try to bring back a couple coins or some kind of currency, and then we always get a fridge magnet to signify where we’ve been. Finally, if we are able, we try to take something else back unique to that country. For example, in Israel we got a very specific type of art and in China we brought back different types of foods and candies.
What places are you hoping to visit next?
We have Ireland scheduled for this year, and hope to get to Italy this year as well. Beyond that, Spain, France, and Greece are the next big three spots. Currently, for our Ireland trip we are planning to visit Dublin and do tours of Jameson, Guinness, Trinity College, and one that takes you to places where “Games of Thrones” filmed. We weren’t able to do much these past two years due to pandemic, so we are super excited to get back at it.