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Aired: May 11th, 2022
Audio and Photo Source: La Toya Sampson and Instagram
The pandemic has effected a lot of things, a major one being our virtual presence. Please tell us we aren't the only ones who refer to people by their Instagram handles now? In surviving a tornado warning together, we found our dear friend @thesoplife who we got to know as Nadeen this Wine Down. Tune in to get insight into this travel bloggers, ski trips, wine tours, and local travels.
Wine Down Wednesday: La Toya Sampson
Orion Brown (00:00:18):
Hey everyone. Hey, Hey. Hey, it's Wednesday. I am very clearly in an office. <laugh> but that's not gonna hold us down. No, it's not. Cuz it's still wind down and we are about to do this. I have my, this is ranch water. I've never had this before, but it smells really good. Uh, it's a spicy, hard seltzer and it's got lime and agave and jalapeno and baby is Wednesday. So mama needs a sip, so, okay. I'm not mad at that. So hi everyone. So good to see you. It's Wednesday. Y'all it's Wine Down Wednesday. I'm your girl, Orion Brown. I'm the founder and CEO of black travel box. We're a personal care products company for travelers of color. For those of you who don't know us. But I think the folks I'm seeing, you know us quite well, so good to see you guys again. I'm super, super excited. Once again. We're gonna take some time and just kick it whosaw off the week. Whoaw and we're gonna talk about my favorite topic and hopefully y'all's
Orion Brown (00:01:33):
So let's get into it. You're leaving for Europe. Oh my gosh. That's awesome. Hey, hello doctor's in the house.
La Toya Sampson (00:01:48):
Hi, how are you?
Orion Brown (00:01:49):
Hello, How are you?
La Toya Sampson (00:01:52):
I am good. I'm good. I'm so excited.
Orion Brown (00:01:57):
Cheers to that girl. Cheers to that.
La Toya Sampson (00:01:59):
<laugh> well, don't it's water, but that's okay.
Orion Brown (00:02:03):
Well mine is ranch water. So it's close. So we we're going H two. Oh, we're going hydration today. I'm not mad at it. I'm not mad at it at all. Thank you. Thank you so much for joining. Everybody's popping in. I love it. I love it. So let me just see. So kind Vanessa said she's leaving for Europe on Tuesday. Hey. Oh, oh my God. I need this. How fast do you ship? Well, I ain't gonna lie, girl. We got some stuff outta stock, but <laugh> look, I'm gonna keep it real. Y'all this, this, this life of keeping up with the demand is a challenge. However, go on our website. Anything that you see in stock will ship it'll ship in the next couple of days and it should presumably if you're not in like Alaska, it should get to you by the weekend. So go ahead and hop on the site and grab some stuff and let us know where you're going in Europe. Hey, was it Uritza okay. UritzaBeton court. Did I say that right? I think I got the whole thing. Hey, y'all
La Toya Sampson (00:03:01):
Orion Brown (00:03:02):
Hey, y'all I'm out. Like I'm still living for the comments. I feel like I've been doing nothing but business discussions all day and it is just so nice to chill with people. I love it. I love it. Yes. Yes. Portugal. I where'd you go I'm jelly. It's like the third person I've talked to Grenada. Angela. Oh
La Toya Sampson (00:03:23):
Orion Brown (00:03:25):
Yes. I love it. I love it. Okay. Ma'am I want, I'm so excited to have you here and I already hear the accent, so I'm so excited to get into it. I know you got a good passport. I know your passport's popping girl.
La Toya Sampson (00:03:40):
Wow. This one is like my third one. So this one is actually kind of empty cause -
Orion Brown (00:03:44):
Well, but they're all really one book. It's just many chapters. It's many chapters of the same book. <laugh> so introduce yourself to everybody. What's your name? Where do you live and where are you from? And then about how many passport stamps have you collected?
La Toya Sampson (00:04:01):
Okay. I am Latoya. I go by Dr. Toya on social media.
Orion Brown (00:04:06):
Call her by her name. Now doctor, doctor,
La Toya Sampson (00:04:11):
I live in Northern California. I'm originally from Tobago and I've been to about 21 countries, even though I can't remember what the 21st one was, but I know it's 21. <laugh>
Orion Brown (00:04:23):
She said I was there. I just, mm.
La Toya Sampson (00:04:25):
Cause I was trying to list it out and I was like, I am missing one, but I don't remember what it is. Um, but about like 24 stance because of repeat, you know, visits. Yeah. And I feel like the United States should count several times for me because I'm not from here. So then I
Orion Brown (00:04:42):
Have like that totally casts too. Yes.
La Toya Sampson (00:04:45):
So then I have like 15 million, like <laugh>
Orion Brown (00:04:49):
So, so in coming back and forth into the country, have you gotten to see a good amount in the us or have you stayed sort of localized?
La Toya Sampson (00:04:56):
Yeah. I'm not great at us travel. Um, and 2020, it was supposed to be our year to remedy that. And then the pandemic happened. So
Orion Brown (00:05:05):
2020 was a whole Trilon. Yeah. So and so, so we just don't it 10 years long.
La Toya Sampson (00:05:12):
It really was. But I do have a us trip planned in July, so I'm going to, um, Seattle never been, so that should be nice, but yeah, I need to get on the us travel.
Orion Brown (00:05:26):
It's beautiful out there. It is definitely beautiful. And I feel like the summertime is the right time to be there because it's like fall and spring is just moist. It's like Misty.
La Toya Sampson (00:05:37):
I'm not trying to rain. Sorry. I
Orion Brown (00:05:39):
We're not here for that life. So, so tell us, so you are a doctor, what kind of doctor are you lady? What's what's what's
La Toya Sampson (00:05:47):
I have an OB GYN.
Orion Brown (00:05:49):
Oh, you're keeping us right. You're keeping us well. You're keeping us old in our lady bits where we need it the most. Oh my goodness. So I, I hate to jump in with a political question, but given all of the stuff that's been going on
La Toya Sampson (00:06:05):
Orion Brown (00:06:05):
With like women's reproductive rights and the fact that you have like so much you well traveled. How are you? Like, how are you even absorbing all of this and a, is there an escape plan and where, where are we meeting up? And so have you seen this in other places?
La Toya Sampson (00:06:25):
I, the way that I deal with stuff like that, pandemic George Floyd, all of it was to block it out. It may seem like a couple out, but that's kind of, that's my self care. That's how I take care of myself. So I really am not absorbing a lot. And I'm also going through quite a bit professionally. I just quit my job. Um,
Orion Brown (00:06:47):
So are we happy? We,
La Toya Sampson (00:06:49):
We, I, we are very happy. Yes,
Orion Brown (00:06:52):
Yes. Yay. Yes. Come on. Y'all celebrator in the comment. Yes. Freedom. Give us free.
La Toya Sampson (00:06:59):
<laugh> so, you know, it's, it's a lot, it's a lot going on. Yeah. Um, you know, we pretty lucky in this country to have the rights that we have in general, my feeling, I tend to have this, you know, fanciful outlook on things. Um, my husband will, will attest to that and I'm just like, this is not gonna stand. It's not like I refuse to believe it. So, because I believe it that's how it's gonna be. <laugh> I'm just putting it out there. Like I don't, yeah. I don't wanna get too much into all of that. I just can't. Yeah, yeah. There's no way. There's no way. So,
Orion Brown (00:07:36):
But I refuse to participate and I'm not mad at that.
La Toya Sampson (00:07:39):
Yeah. Because I'm from a place where it's illegal always has been. And I, you know, as everybody knows, doesn't stop anything from happening. It just stops it from being safe. Right. So, you know, mm-hmm, <affirmative>, it's, it's not gonna stand, don't worry. It's it's gonna be fixed.
Orion Brown (00:07:59):
We just leave it to God and, and somebody's gonna trip over themselves. Cause I've read so many articles that I'm like, wait, so you're gonna have to like show, like if I, I saw something and I was like, I hope the internet is not trolling us, but it was like, lawmakers are trying to make it so that if you're pregnant, you can't cross state lines. And I was like, what? Like, <laugh> what
La Toya Sampson (00:08:20):
I can't, I can't,
Orion Brown (00:08:21):
It's a little, I mean, it's a little HBO special kind of, uh, thing, but all good. If nothing else, we still got our passports. Uh <laugh> This, this, I will be a Canadian so quick. I got no qualms at all. So anyway, I love this. I love this. So tell me, you mentioned that like you have about 20, 21. We don't know what the extra one was. Yes. But you've got probably 24 or so because you've hit a couple places. Yeah. A few times like that ratio tells me that those places must have been pretty darn special to bring you back because you're, you've got a pretty broad base.
La Toya Sampson (00:09:04):
Well, no, it was more cause
Orion Brown (00:09:06):
La Toya Sampson (00:09:07):
<laugh> it's because of the situation, because I have this thing where I don't really like going to the same places because I still in places because mm-hmm <affirmative> I still feel that even though 21 sounds like a lot, maybe to some people, to me, it's just like, there's so many other places I have to see. Yeah. So I really don't like wasting a whole trip and you know, I've always been employed and getting vacation is hard. It's hard for me. It used to be used to be, um,
Orion Brown (00:09:33):
Cause you're done with that life. Ah,
La Toya Sampson (00:09:36):
So you know, to take vacation, to go somewhere I've been before has been like a thing. But um, like I went to Greece twice. The second time was because it was my sister's trip, so I kind of have to go because she chose it over
Orion Brown (00:09:49):
<laugh> yeah, I got,
La Toya Sampson (00:09:51):
Yeah. And then I've been to Mexico a couple times just because proximity, the last time was during, it was last year and I hadn't traveled at all during the pandemic. And I was like, I want somewhere close somewhere quick. Yeah. Somewhere with the beach. And it was just the easiest, cheapest place to go to. So, um, and then the second time I went to Mexico, it was kind of not the typical, it was, um, Sam, Miguel. And they had don't know if you're familiar with it. Yeah. It's like the middle and it was just a different Mexico experience. So I was like, okay, where was this account? So, um,
Orion Brown (00:10:24):
Well, and I was hard to say that like Mexico, oftentimes we think about beaches and Tulu and Cancun. Right. And like the Yucatan peninsula, but there's like so much more to it. That's like so very, very different, not even including things like Baja, which is its own like beach vibe and all of that. So it doesn't count. Those are two separate places.
La Toya Sampson (00:10:45):
It's Maybe that's 21. And I just, I can't remember.
Orion Brown (00:10:49):
<laugh> Mexico, number one and Mexico number two is totally a D but
La Toya Sampson (00:10:53):
It, it really was like a whole different country. It was like being in Europe. Um, it absolutely beautiful city. It was the first time that I did like a walking food tour. And after that I said, I'm gonna do that. Every single place that I go to cuz it was amazing. The food was amazing. And we did it at the end of the trip and I wish we hadn't because we were able to see a lot of the restaurant that weren't touristy. And we had gone to a bunch of like touristy places that weren't that good because you know that they, they know you're gonna come so that it's just not that good. Um, but we got like, it, it was a really, really nice experience. And if we had done at the beginning, we could have like gone back to some of those places to have like a full meal and things like that. Um, but it was still, it set the trend for like the rest of my trips after that. Oh. Um, so I've done like a couple other walk-in food tours. Actually we did one in Greece when we went. Um, and then because it was like a huge girls trip. It was like 11 of us with my sister and oh wow. Yeah. Yeah. That's a whole,
Orion Brown (00:11:58):
We can come back to that one. Yeah.
La Toya Sampson (00:12:00):
Let's come back to that. Um, and now they're in Costa Rica right now without me.
Orion Brown (00:12:06):
Oh I are well, that's a lot of people though.
La Toya Sampson (00:12:10):
No, but not, not that many. Okay.
Orion Brown (00:12:12):
La Toya Sampson (00:12:13):
Five of them. It was too much, but no there's like five of them, the call group, cuz it's my other sister's birthday and they made sure they put a food to, because ours were so nice. So it's like, yeah, get on the food tour guys. They're great.
Orion Brown (00:12:27):
Oh my gosh. And that is such, that's a word right there. I have even found that some of the more, the, the less sexy places you go to, you can still find a great food tour and find a lot of culture built into it. And a lot of interesting stuff, history that you'd be like, oh, this is just whatever, you know, town. And then you hit that food tour. You're like, oh this the, this, the spot right here.
La Toya Sampson (00:12:52):
Orion Brown (00:12:53):
<laugh> so, so tell me like what, what started your love of travel? Um, you know, oftentimes we talk, I talk, I've talked to a number of people, um, you know, it's like, uh, uh, black us black American versus like Caribbean versus African in terms of perspective. And oftentimes like I'm black and from the Midwest. So it was like exposure to a passport. What? Right. Um, versus being born with a passport cuz it's like, oh yeah, I was, I was in the us or other countries three times before I was even a toddler and before I could speak. So like where did travel become something that you really embraced and, and began to follow up with?
La Toya Sampson (00:13:35):
Oh, that's a good question. Pretty young because my, I don't my first trip wasn't to the states. I think it was when I was like 10. Um, but I also, I've always been very independent and very like, I wanna see things. So, and my parents really encouraged that. So I was really blessed. Um, and I knew I wanted to be a doctor pretty early on. So my first like extended trip, I think I spent like two weeks or maybe it was a week in Grenada. That's when I went to Grenita, um, at a, like a pre-med camp. So, oh, that was like really nice. And the medical school. I know if you are familiar with St. George's it's like overlooking the beach on a cliff. It's amazing. It's so
Orion Brown (00:14:17):
Yeah, she over here talking about, well, I was studying, but we was on a cliff and it was beautiful. <laugh> It was, I love that.
La Toya Sampson (00:14:26):
Yeah. So I think that was like my first like trip trip. Um, but I don't know. I've just always, there's so many places to see, like I had this running list on my phone of just like countries that I wanted to visit and just end up being countries in the world. <laugh> so just like this long list.
Orion Brown (00:14:44):
La Toya Sampson (00:14:45):
So yeah. So
Orion Brown (00:14:47):
What are, what are some of the places that, you know, as in theory, COVID clears up a little bit that you're like, I definitely need to get to like ASAP,
La Toya Sampson (00:14:57):
ASAP. So there are many tier to, you know, my travel plans. Right.
Orion Brown (00:15:02):
Okay. Tell us about this. Tell us about how you structure I'm. So here for, cause I'm very similar.
La Toya Sampson (00:15:08):
So because I'm in California now, it depends on what's going on in my life. Right. So if I need like a quick trip, then I'll do central America. Cuz there are a couple places there that I haven't been to that I really wanna visit Belize was one that I was planning and then it ended up changing last minute. Um, but I ended up going to Bahamas, which I had never been to before. So it was nice anyway. Um, so like if I need a quick trip central America, but my focus now in my travel journey is to go back to the continent. So I've been to like five countries and um, we wanna do Senegal and, and it's the way that I plan is on ease. And mainly it was because I keep going back to it, but it's, it's fresh because I was working right. And I hardly had time off. So I had to like plan. Okay. Where can I go quickly? And Senegal is a pretty quick flight from, from New York. So we were like, okay, let's do that. Um, for my 40th, I wanna do, um, like 40,
Orion Brown (00:16:09):
Where 40 who
La Toya Sampson (00:16:12):
It's it's in, it's in the future. This is for planning. You know how
Orion Brown (00:16:14):
People are. Oh, oh, okay.
La Toya Sampson (00:16:15):
I need to give them all these years so that they can plan. So I don't wanna hear that. You didn't know or you don't have time. I told you like five years ago.
Orion Brown (00:16:26):
Yeah. You should have been on your calendar if you didn't keep up with it, that's on you. Cause I'm out.
La Toya Sampson (00:16:30):
This is, this is what I'm saying. Right. So
Orion Brown (00:16:32):
La Toya Sampson (00:16:33):
For my, for my fourth year, which is in five years. Um, we wanna do Tanzania, Kenya. I don't like doing too many countries unless it's for a long time. So we'll see how many. Um, but we also consider it Morocco. So it just, it just depends. And you know, I have to like calm myself down because it's been a, it's been like two years. So, you know, I can, you're excited everything. Yeah. I, I can't just plan everything.
Orion Brown (00:17:02):
I, you kind of can, but <laugh> True that you don't, you don't have to book everything, but you can plan it at
La Toya Sampson (00:17:10):
Orion Brown (00:17:10):
Yeah. Um, I, I went to Kenya in 2016 and a, the beach scene is an insane and I had no idea and I'm still kind of mad. I'm like the Caribbean is beautiful. Right. However, we never get to hear about there's a whole continent covered with coastline. Like <laugh> and it's the beaches girl. Yeah. And they greet you with the drink at the resort and all of that good stuff. Uh, and I hear you on like the country hopping, like people talk about country hopping in Europe. It's like, oh, everything's so close and it's easy, but it's not that hard on the continent depending on where you go. Yeah. And so like being able to pop over the border to Uganda or pop over borders to Tanzania, isn't terrible. Right. And you can get some really cool eclectic experiences out of it. Yeah. So that sounds amazing.
La Toya Sampson (00:18:06):
Love it. Yeah. And that's, I did that kind of when I, I spent a month in Botswana during my residency to, um, as an elective. So I was doing like gynecology work, but uh, you know, we still had a little bit of time to travel. I didn't have any money, so I didn't do a whole lot <laugh> so I
Orion Brown (00:18:26):
Summer ride <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:18:28):
It was a little bit limited, but we did, you know, I went to South Africa, I actually got stuck in South Africa on the way to Zimbabwe, um, to do Victoria falls, but we made a trip out of it. We went, you know, up in a air balloon and all this random stuff. Yeah. It was very random. Wasn't
Orion Brown (00:18:46):
It? Were you in Cape town or like Johannesburg
La Toya Sampson (00:18:48):
Or? No, we got stuck in Johannesburg on the way to, to Victoria falls. It was just for a day.
Orion Brown (00:18:53):
La Toya Sampson (00:18:55):
Yeah. But I, you know, I had never been, I still don't really count that trip because it was literally one day and yeah. You know, it was pretty quick. I had been to Cape town the year before by myself. I just looked on, um, is that app still going? Um, what's it called? Living social. Does that still exist?
Orion Brown (00:19:14):
Yeah. Yeah. Living social and Groupon and all of this
La Toya Sampson (00:19:17):
Stuff. Yeah. I knew Groupon still exist as well. I wasn't sure about living social. So I was like, you know what, I wanna do a trip. And I was at that point where I refused to wait for people. So I was like, well, if I can't find anybody, I'm just gonna go. So I went on living social, I found like a tall group and I just went and it was, um, the gone route. So Cape town up to port Elizabeth and we were in this big, like, it wasn't really a truck, but it was like an elevated bus situation. I understand that. Yeah. Yeah. So, um, that was, that was pretty interesting. It was nice, but it was also before my current, I don't wanna say wokeness, but my current state of
Orion Brown (00:20:02):
La Toya Sampson (00:20:04):
Awareness. How about that?
Orion Brown (00:20:05):
La Toya Sampson (00:20:06):
So, you know, visiting the continent with non-black people is interesting is
Orion Brown (00:20:12):
Different, is real different.
La Toya Sampson (00:20:14):
Yeah. So that's why I feel like I still need to go back to South Africa, even though it will be now the third time, because the experience was, it was very different and um, I need to experience it yeah. The right way. Right. Um, so, you know,
Orion Brown (00:20:31):
It's funny you say that, cuz I, when I went to South Africa, I actually went with a very diverse group mm-hmm <affirmative> so it wasn't just, uh, uh, translucent friends with me <laugh> you know, and, but even that like even just diversity of thought, et cetera, I actually, I had done it with business school and the thing that I actually found a little bit powerful was there were a number of, um, Indian women on the trip mm-hmm <affirmative>. And so, you know, when I got my first exposure to places like Soweto, where I was like, oh hell no. Right. And they were like, oh, you think that's? Oh, you think that's great? Oh, oh no, no, no. Here let me show you some <laugh>. And I'm like what? And so there was something really interesting to have people who had experience what we would call the third world firsthand.
Orion Brown (00:21:24):
Yeah. And people who hadn't and like kind of everything in between. Yeah. So you get, I mean, and it was, you know, interesting to, to then like note who's driving our buses, who's riding us around, um, what, what line is, is, are they delineated on for colored ness versus not, and what their history was there? So it's, it's an interesting thing. I, I, I, and I, I, I, I choke a little because it's, it is an interesting thing because you realize what lens people are coming with. Yeah. When you go to especially an all black or African diaspora space, right. Yeah. Um, and cuz cuz then they start talking out of whatever lens they're they're coming from. And sometimes it's so it is so woke. You're like, Ooh, I'm embarrassed. I didn't come ready. Right. And then sometimes it's the opposite. Um, yeah. But it is very interesting and it is very different to go to like for Kenya, for instance, we were completely a black group. Nice. And there were like 16 of us, we went for habitat for humanity and then we did a vacation trip off of it. Uh, and that was a very like we, the way we rolled, it was like a Beyonce video cuz we wanted to yeah. Represent. It was just, you know, it's the lens that we brought. So
La Toya Sampson (00:22:53):
Yeah, that was, you know, divide that I wanted when we went to Ghana because we went for a year of the return, actually. That was my last trip before the pandemic. And what also interesting, cuz that was recently, that was this current state of social awareness. Right. Mm-hmm <affirmative> but we went with the talk group because I decided very late. I had to wait for my vacation to be approved. So like two, three months before I was like, okay, let's go. Of course there was nowhere available, no hotels. So I found this, um, tall group he's based in a Panta and he gave us this, oh, you'll get saints, really nice hotel and all this stuff, that was not the case, but there was this one white guy on the, the tall and it was just like, it was my husband's first trip to the continent. He was just like, I, this is not how I wanted to experience my first, you know, experience of Africa. And you know, when we went to, um, to like the slave castles and stuff, it was like, usually I feel like if I was in that situation and I wasn't black, I would kind of fall back, but that was not the case. He had a lot of opinions about things and I was just like,
La Toya Sampson (00:24:08):
I feel like you should just be quiet right now. So, you know, it was just another type of experience my South Africa experience on Botana wasn't wasn't really like that actually really enjoyed it with the groups that I went with. But I, that one was just like really, do you really need to be here right now?
Orion Brown (00:24:27):
Well, and, and in that, there is a narrative of like the interesting level of audacity and, and, and I don't even necessarily mean audacity in a sense that somebody's coming with a negative intent. Yeah. But they just have a feeling of the space is mine to take up.
La Toya Sampson (00:24:47):
Orion Brown (00:24:48):
And it, and it's not even an awareness thing. And then, you know, as a black woman, I'm always trying to figure out how to be comfortable with taking up space cuz I know I'm supposed to, but also I've also been taught not to. And, and so to see that free flow from a person when you're aware of what it actually, what it is yeah. Is like, it is just, it is a whole philosophical moment in and of itself.
La Toya Sampson (00:25:13):
And I was like at this moment, this very moment. Cause it was a lot, I don't know if you've ever been to any of like these slave castles on um oh
Orion Brown (00:25:22):
Haven't yeah. Along the close friends.
La Toya Sampson (00:25:25):
Yes. It was a lot and I was pregnant at the time. So it was just like emotional actually started, um, my nose started bleeding. Like it was like physically, emotionally, and we were supposed to go to two of them. I couldn't, none of us could have gone into the second one. We, it was just too much. So I stayed to the restroom and I came back and my friend was in like a heated discussion with this guy because he had, I, what were they talking about? They were talking about, um, the Confederate statues and how <laugh> I was just like right now, is, is that what you wanna discuss? And this is not, this is not appropriate. So it's just like, yeah.
Orion Brown (00:26:11):
I mean, unless you're comment and this is, I, I usually don't like to give people their opinions, but unless your comment is, this is exactly why we don't need Confederate statues, then there's no other reason to bring it up. And Ms. First string said, it's emotionally altering y'all y'all scaring me off. I wanna go. But I also don't wanna call mark back.
La Toya Sampson (00:26:31):
You should go. It it's, it's a lot. It was a lot. Um, but it's definitely something to seek and it's just like, it caused, like she said, altering is a good word because it caused like a lot of changes. Um, I am Christian, I was raised Catholic and you know, it caused a lot of disruption in the, the Christianity part of it because, oh
Orion Brown (00:26:56):
La Toya Sampson (00:26:57):
We went into one of the areas where the slaves, the enslaved people were held and right on top was a church. Right. So it's just like,
Orion Brown (00:27:09):
This is, I also look at yes, that and in the states we had much of the same thing. Everybody's at church and there's fields of people right behind and ultimately evil is evil. Know how, no matter how you dress it
La Toya Sampson (00:27:26):
Orion Brown (00:27:28):
And I always, I try to remind myself in any situation where there is a structure around it, that the institution and it's individuals are two different things and the intent of the institution versus what people have made of it. Yes. Are two different things. But yeah, it's wild. It's wild.
La Toya Sampson (00:27:49):
It's wild is a good word.
Orion Brown (00:27:50):
<laugh> it's wild.
La Toya Sampson (00:27:54):
Orion Brown (00:27:55):
Oh my goodness. Well, what were, were there moments of beauty at all that kind of balanced that out with the trip? Or was it really a trip of solemnity and you know, just self inflection and all of that?
La Toya Sampson (00:28:10):
No, it, it was, it was a good, it was a good trip eventually. So because of that, because of the talk room, we had a lot of humps. Um, the hotel that we were promised was not what we got. Um, some tours that we, um, was supposed to go on was booked for the wrong day. So then we had to miss it like it was, but you know, in my amazing privilege that I have, I know a lot of people from a lot of different places, one of my closest friends that I went to residency with her husband is Ghanaian and her, his family kind of just adopted us and then made the entire trip. Amazing. So it's one thing to go. Yeah. Like I was there with people who are Ghana man. So they took us in, um, I did my, my, um, bump photo shoot out there. And she has like, like this guy took us and drove an hour, waited for us, drove an hour back. It was really like, we were positive family. So that part of it ended up being absolutely amazing. Um, but it has to be faster. <laugh>
Orion Brown (00:29:22):
And, and you were traveling pregnant now, help me understand because, and I know that there's a lot of, there's a lot of trepidation. There's a lot of different things that people think about. It's like, even once you have, once the child is outside of your body, well, you can't travel anywhere cuz they're not like all these things, but like what is the dynamic for somebody who is a travel lover and is pregnant or is going to be pregnant. And they're like, but I want the things to come. I wanna bunk, I wanna do my bunk photo shoot, which by the way, we need to talk about how you got that set up too. But like how, like what is, what, what are the parameters to be able to do that safely? Or are we just all freaking out over nothing?
La Toya Sampson (00:30:03):
Well, no, there's some real risks and you know, disclaimer, this is not medical advice. Talk to your doctor,
Orion Brown (00:30:09):
Not medical advice. <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:30:11):
So, but you know, I
Orion Brown (00:30:13):
To research on your own and ask your doctor.
La Toya Sampson (00:30:15):
Exactly. Um, and you know, it's so funny that you ask, cuz this is something that I wanted to do. You know, I, I left that job because it was corporate medicine, soul sucking, all the reasons, people, anything corporate. Right. Mm-hmm <affirmative> and one of the things that I couldn't do was counsel my patients, how I wanted to, because I didn't have enough time because they, they stick people in there. Yeah. Right. So like talking about this stuff is, is what I love to do, but it's just like, you know, I, I'm not giving anybody any medical advice. Um, but I always tell people, you need to think about how far long you are. Right. So if you are viable here, which is like 24 weeks, then you need to consider, well, what if you're going to preton labor? Are you in a place that can take care of you? Because not everywhere can, right? Yes. So like in Trinidad, viability is not until 28 weeks. So that's like about seven months. So it depends because of what the infrastructure is. So you need to consider that if you go into lay ban, you're even a little bit further along where the baby can survive. The, your child's gonna stay there. Are you gonna be able to stay there? Like, you know, oh,
La Toya Sampson (00:31:24):
So it's, oh, you're gonna have to leave your kid and come back home. So a lot of times, wait,
Orion Brown (00:31:30):
Let's roll this back. Let's roll this back. I wanna make sure I understand. So if, if you go into pre-term labor, God forbid and you end up at a hospital and you give birth, the child's too small, too young to be moved and leave the country. You still have the legal implications of whether or not you, you still have a right to be there.
La Toya Sampson (00:31:48):
Exactly. So it depends on you visa situation, whatever else. Yeah. It may be time for you to go or just, you may have to go back to work. You may have other kids at home. Like there may be other reasons why you can't stay and now your child is wherever without you. Um, so it's, it's really a personal decision, but a lot of times when you are in that VI, it's really not worth it. I was very, I was only 20, 20 weeks, 20, like about five months-ish mm-hmm <affirmative>. So, you know, if God had forbid anything happen, it would be terrible, but baby wasn't gonna survive anyway. Right. So, you know, it was a, it was a risk that I decided to take and I was comfortable because my specialty and all that. Yeah. But once you are further long, it's just like, well, is it really worth it to you? Um, I have a lot of people who need to travel for family and stuff like that. Um, and you have to consider the actual, like physical risks and things like that. But I thought it was fine and people were like, you're gonna go to Africa pregnant. Oh my gosh. Really? I was like, yeah. Yeah. I'm also, you know, I have a lot of, um, antibodies from
Orion Brown (00:32:59):
Being that's super bad. <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:33:02):
I'm like, I'm from a third world, I'm from a developing country. So I usually go places and don't get sick. Like if other people do, I got sick a lot as a child, it's just
Orion Brown (00:33:14):
Happening. You've been exposed to all the things you got, all the antibodies, that part pretty much. So I'm curious from a flight perspective, like, did you end up with like crazy elephant blown up feet and swelling and pain or anything like that?
La Toya Sampson (00:33:30):
I didn't from that trip, but I also, I just remembered I travel home when I was pregnant as well. When I was a little bit earlier, like 16 weeks. So year of the return, I went in December. I went home in October and that trip, my feet were like elephant trunks. Um, and I think I spent a lot more time just in the heat and in Trinidad is a lot worse than in Ghana. Just, you know? Yeah,
Orion Brown (00:33:57):
La Toya Sampson (00:33:58):
Yeah. Yeah. So when I came back, my feet were huge. Um, and it was at the travel time from Trinidad, from here. It's pretty long. It takes you like 17 hours. When you count the amount of time you have to get to the airport layovers and all that stuff. Um, but that trip, I don't remember having much issues, which is interesting. Yeah.
Orion Brown (00:34:22):
Yeah. Well, look, I mean, I haven't traveled pregnant, but I've definitely, my feet will blow up at a drop of a dime. I'm like, I'm on the flight being like, y'all mind if I put my feet up
La Toya Sampson (00:34:31):
Here. Right. Cause
Orion Brown (00:34:32):
It's just <laugh> so I just, I find it fascinating. And then the other side is that first trimester where the whole world smells way too intense and anything could come up at the drop of a hat. Is that, yeah,
La Toya Sampson (00:34:46):
I didn't have that. My pregnancy was like, thank God. It was really good. I wouldn't say easy, but I, for a while I was like, am I really pregnant?
Orion Brown (00:34:57):
<laugh> y'all very first doctor you. If you've ever had a moment in your life where you're like, is this really happening? Look, it happens to everybody. Has that thought at some point.
La Toya Sampson (00:35:07):
Yeah. The, um, but even I look at my son now, I'm just like, this is my child. Like he called, he looked up and I was like, mommy, I'm like, oh God, that's me.
Orion Brown (00:35:16):
<laugh> look at my face, looking back at me, telling me stuff.
La Toya Sampson (00:35:21):
I know. And he looks just like me, but yeah. I
Orion Brown (00:35:24):
Love that. I love that. Miss Ms. Per strings, that compression socks are my friends. This is true. You, you know what though? See, I will, Holk out some compression socks, like, like it's so bad. I, I remember having a doctor. I was actually concerned about it because I had never had swelling like that before. And I had gone on a trip and I had little pillows on top of my feet. Like, it was just like, you could tap it and it was jiggly and it was, yeah. I was like, that is a lot of water. She's like, oh, you just need to put compression socks on. So I put the compression socks on, they swelled in the sock and then they swelled more around the outside of it.
La Toya Sampson (00:35:58):
They were too tight.
Orion Brown (00:35:59):
Yeah. Well then she's like, get the tighter one. She told me to get tighter once and it just bruised my feet up. It bruised my feet,
La Toya Sampson (00:36:05):
My advice. Sorry. <laugh> yeah. You need to make sure like any pregnant ladies out, you need to make sure it's the right size, cuz it's just gonna make it worse. Yeah. That's that's what happened. It just compressed even more and just, just made it worse. So I tell people like, if you're gonna travel and you wanna wear them, get your foot measured. Even the ones on Amazon you can measure, um, just to get the right size mm-hmm <affirmative> um, but then you can get like the medical grade ones where they actually like fit the just for, but yeah, those were too tight. That was, that
Orion Brown (00:36:35):
Was <laugh>. And she was like, go tighter. And I was like, this doesn't seem to I'm I'm gonna go with your advice. And now I listen to the internet. I hate to say it <laugh> but now I listen to the, but you know, to your point to roll it back where you talk about like only having so much time with a patient, it is really interesting. Even just over the years, noting how healthcare has sort of changed in how much like care comes into the health piece and how much discussion happens and the like, versus canned answers and yeah. And things like that. And, and it's, I don't even think of it as an individual. Like I don't necessarily hold it against the doctor, but it's definitely a system that just doesn't incentivize you or give you the room to, to have those deeper discussions and yeah. And then certainly in a country that does not listen to black women and we have, we have data to support it. It's not just us being like no ma listening
La Toya Sampson (00:37:34):
To me. Yeah.
Orion Brown (00:37:35):
There's actual research. Um, yeah, we gotta, we gotta come armed and ready and yeah. So, you know, while this isn't medical advice, y'all if you're I heard this on the thing, you go talk to your doctor and be like, this is what they said, like, yeah. That's not a bad conversation to have to push it.
La Toya Sampson (00:37:52):
It's not. And you know, I, I wanna just say thank you for your perspective on that because a lot of people blame us. Um, when it's the system that has been created by insurance and it's all about really it's about money and capitalism, right. Mm-hmm <affirmative> um, and it's difficult. It causes a lot of burnout, you know? Yes. That's, that's what happened. Right. Um,
Orion Brown (00:38:17):
But you out, out now, so, ah, ain't no more burn you just out. Yes. I know it's scary, but I'm, I'm happy for you.
La Toya Sampson (00:38:25):
Oh yeah. I am ecstatic. I am no longer before I was like scared. Now it's just like, Ooh, what was I doing all that time? <laugh> um, and you know, I have plans, right? I have plans to make sure that I don't leave people out to drive because the main reason I got into not even medicine, but OB GYN, like I wanted to be in OB OB GYN. I didn't wanna be a doctor. I wanted to be ogy. It was because of patient education. Right. I, I was in high school and a lot of my peers didn't know a lot of things that I felt should have been basic, but I was studying biology. So I kind of knew. And I was just like, we should, we should know this stuff. Like this is our bodies and stuff.
Orion Brown (00:39:05):
It's your body. You should know how it works. You should
La Toya Sampson (00:39:07):
Know, you know, how many holes are down there. You should know. So, you know, I
Orion Brown (00:39:12):
Never understood why people were confused by that. But I grew up in a house where my mom had, um, she had gone to nursing school and she had all of her books. Yeah. And I was just a weird nerdy kid. So I had flipped through everything. Yeah. But I, it never occurred to, like, I just was like, it, it never occurred to me to not have interest in what was going on. Like even just from a poke and see what happens kind. <laugh> I didn't put it that way, but you know what I mean? Like it's like, I'll, I'll give you an example, watching things like Dr. Pimple popper, which I'm absolutely obsessed with. And I'm like, who is the lipoma put money on her? I bet it's the lipoma. Um, but people will be like, yeah, it's been there for years and I've never looked at it. I knew it was there. I could feel it sometimes. And it's just like,
La Toya Sampson (00:39:57):
Orion Brown (00:39:58):
Be sober. I would think that that so bad. I would've been at it with a, but knife. I have no though. That's also
La Toya Sampson (00:40:04):
Don't do Don't do it. No <laugh> but yeah, though, the awareness of your body and that's so layered, right. Because there's a certain level of shame that a lot of women have, so that mm-hmm <affirmative>, you know, they don't wanna touch down there because of how they were raised. Just fair. Um, they have like a lot of reasons for people just not knowing. And I, I really like explaining stuff. I really like educating. So stay tuned.
Orion Brown (00:40:38):
I was gonna say, this sounds like there's a next chapter here.
La Toya Sampson (00:40:41):
Oh, there's several next chapters. <laugh> so,
Orion Brown (00:40:43):
Oh, I love it. I love
La Toya Sampson (00:40:44):
It. Yeah. So like, I didn't just, I quit no plan. There's a plan. So like, you know, I'm still going to be practicing. Um, and then I'm still gonna be working on my business, um, that I have as well, and then doing some, some other things that I'll keep on. So tell
Orion Brown (00:41:03):
Us about your business. What, what are, what are you into doctor?
La Toya Sampson (00:41:07):
It has nothing, well, maybe slightly. So I have a website, it's a directory it's called by default. Um, it's a curated directory of black owned businesses, black professionals who cater specifically to the black community.
Orion Brown (00:41:22):
La Toya Sampson (00:41:24):
So, um, reading
Orion Brown (00:41:25):
Book for professional services.
La Toya Sampson (00:41:28):
Well, it's not just professional services. It's for products, all sorts of things. Um, so look out for an email, Ms. Black travel walks.
Orion Brown (00:41:38):
<laugh> I love it. I love it. Yes.
La Toya Sampson (00:41:41):
But yeah, so it's like one part is product based service based. And then the other part is for professionals because, you know, I have the reason that I started the, the directory and then the reason, um, that I wanted to include the professionals. They actually like two kind of separate things. Um, but I wanted to share that privilege that I have, like, I have anesthesiologist two pediatricians in my chat group that I talk to every day. Right. Like I want to be able to share that privilege with other people. You can find your black doctor, you can find a black lawyer, all that stuff. So, you know, it's kind of like a work in, in progress for that part of it. Mm-hmm <affirmative>. Um, but for right now I have, um, hair products, uh, counseling services, Alsos of things, um, that are on there. But because of everything that's been going on personally, it's been kind of like, not, I haven't been in it as much because
Orion Brown (00:42:39):
You got all stuff going on. Yeah.
La Toya Sampson (00:42:41):
I stuff going on and we
Orion Brown (00:42:43):
Love to been a good place. Black women. We love to be like, I got five things going at once and I'm about to open three more child and, and we're so in it and, and we're capable, but we are doing a lot. We're always
La Toya Sampson (00:42:56):
Doing a lot. I was doing quite a bit. And I always say, you know, like it kind of accelerated my burnouts start in the business, but in a good way, because it kind of let me know that I didn't have to continue doing what I was doing. Like I could be an entrepreneur. I can, you know, work on my own time. I can do all these things and I don't have to continue to be employed and do things a certain way that I was, you know, trained to think, well, this is the only way, you know, you get a job, you're employed. You're at the hospital. You take your call and you do all that stuff. So, um, it's like, people ask me, it's like, no, are you just gonna do by the default full time? I'm like, well, no, I I'm still no B GYN.
La Toya Sampson (00:43:40):
I, I still I'm going to practice. Um, but now I have more time to put into the business to reach out to more companies to add, to really like get new professionals on there and things like that because I really want it to be a resource. It's always been about the consumer. It's about the, the customer. Um, there are a lot of directories out there now, but mm-hmm, <affirmative> when I, when people come to my platform to come to by default, I want you to feel like somebody made this, especially for me, you feel like cater to you feel celebrated, like everything on there is black by default. And that's where the name comes from. You know, mm-hmm <affirmative> so you don't have to like, wonder is this, is this is this for me? Like, is it, yeah.
Orion Brown (00:44:25):
La Toya Sampson (00:44:27):
So, you know, it gives me joy, like talking about it and you know, thinking about what it could be and cause, you know, I only started last year. Um, so there's still a lot of growth, a lot of things succumb, but I like, I was writing this grant application. I was like, this is a good business. Like I had to, you know, I had to like
Orion Brown (00:44:51):
Describe it. I had a good idea. This is good. Let me write this down. <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:44:56):
Cause I were asking all these questions and I was just like, you know, cause sometimes you feel, I don't know how you felt when you started, um, your business, but it's just like, do, do people really want this? Is this really like a thing? Yeah. Yeah. Um,
Orion Brown (00:45:10):
Look, I'm still there. I'm still having moments where I'm like, what were you thinking? I'm just telling all like it is. Cause I feel like so many people are like, yeah. And then I just did this and then overnight and all this came together and, and, or, and it's just one of those things that you, you put a lot of sacrifice and investment to create something, no matter what it is. And there are days where you're like that I really need to do all that <laugh> yeah. And other days where you're like, I can't lose, I, I, I swear I have these, I there'll be days. Sometimes it'll just be parts of the day where I'm like, I can at lose and then I'm like, oh, losing, you know? And it just
La Toya Sampson (00:45:52):
That's exactly how it is. Yep.
Orion Brown (00:45:55):
Orion Brown (00:45:56):
That's the wave. That's the wave. But it's so funny because you're, this is definitely the time for marketplaces for us. And we're seeing a lot of them, um, crop up and directories and things like that. Yeah. I was actually having a conversation with someone the other day about there's so there's the, I love the by default, um, positioning, because that is oftentimes even how I like to do business. I'm like, I'm gonna do supplier diversity by default. Yeah. It's not a, it's not a, it's not a program. It's that's who I'm looking for. Yeah. Um, but there's also something to be said for figuring out, I guess, how to dismantle the narrative about capabilities and service and things like that. Mm-hmm <affirmative> because when you look at, um, particularly black businesses in the us, especially smaller businesses, what happens is, is everybody's under resourced. Yes.
Orion Brown (00:46:52):
Right. And not only that, most of the places that we play that aren't like really like, uh, concentrated spaces. Mm-hmm <affirmative> um, we're like one, a couple speckles in the hole in the whole bowl. And so when you come in as a customer and I'm putting my customer and client hat on, um, it's like, I, I want to root for everybody black, but I also need to make sure that I'm finding I'm making good business choices. Yes. And so until we get to like critical mass where it's like, well, there's a million black doctors. Right. So, you know, you're gonna get a great black doctor. Cause you could get a crush of the old man that you're not really feeling. I mean, they do exist. <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:47:35):
They're out there.
Orion Brown (00:47:36):
They're out there. Right. Or just people that I wait. Can I tell y'all I had, I did an online therapy and I've been doing this all through COVID and actually a little bit pre C, but I, I got a woman. I had switched therapists and I got a woman. She had a Christmas tree behind her y'all it was like, and the Christmas tree she had, wait, no, it wasn't March. It had to have been later in the year. No, no, no. Okay. It was Mardi GRA. It was Mardi GRA because she made it a Mardi Graw tree, a garage tree
La Toya Sampson (00:48:06):
Orion Brown (00:48:10):
It's like, so the Christmas tree is always behind her and her head's over that. And she would always take calls like this and I'd be like, I can't see you. And she'd be like, is that better? <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:48:24):
Like, if I FaceTime my mom, it's always like right here.
Orion Brown (00:48:27):
<laugh> and it's like, I was seeing half of her face in all of her Mardi GRA. And then I was like, is that a Christmas tree? Oh no. It's for Mardi girl. And then next month is gonna be March madness. So
La Toya Sampson (00:48:42):
She's one of those. Okay. Okay. That's a thing. People like leave trees up all year and like decorated.
Orion Brown (00:48:48):
Um, a lot of things are a thing, but <laugh>, but I say all that to say not everybody's gonna be your cup of tea. Right.
La Toya Sampson (00:48:57):
Orion Brown (00:48:57):
This is all culminating to the question of when we come into spaces, like by default, how do we know? Or how can we either be savvy as customers or tap into the resources that you have to understand the quality and the fit of the people that we're interacting with.
La Toya Sampson (00:49:15):
So yeah, that's something that I struggle with. I'll be very honest with you because it was at this. So the initial people that I had on there, I had, um, my assistant at the time screen them for things like, you know, major customer service issues, things like that, just to make sure it wasn't like some crazy business or a business in China, making sure that I actually knew it was a black person behind it. Right. So, you know, that would be the show screening process. And then it was like, well, I want to make this comprehensive. And I wanna make sure that I honor every type of black person. Right. So I am not going to say, well, this is not important because it may not be important to me or I may not be interested, but I still want to include it. So it's just like, you know, I <laugh> for people who follow me, I buy a lot of stuff from the companies that are on the directory. So I like a lot of stuff, um, like these earrings, but it's just like, I can't, I love,
La Toya Sampson (00:50:14):
I can't buy stuff from every single company to, you know, quality control and things like that. So it was like, you know, it was a challenge. I wanna make this a free space. I don't wanna make it where it's like, well you have to send me stuff and things like that because I understand, like you said, a lot of these businesses are under resourced. I don't want to, you know, make it difficult. I want you to have the promotion that you can have as well as, you know, making sure I honor my mission and presenting these businesses that are very obviously black mm-hmm <affirmative>. So it's just like, you know, it's, it's a little bit difficult to say, well, yes, these are top quality businesses because I'm, I'm sure they are, but am I going to, can I really say that because I have not bought EV like things from all the businesses, like, how do you quality control?
La Toya Sampson (00:51:09):
Um, and they are actually marketplaces when I was doing my research. There was this one, I think it was black and green. Yeah. Where she it's in the mission. She there's like this month long process to get your products on there. And she tests every single, I think it's a woman from my, a long time ago. She tests every single thing that is on there. And I was just like, well, that's amazing. I can't just because of the nature of how I wanted to, to run it. I can't really do that. Um, and I, the way that I set it up being something that's completely voluntary, I have the agreement of all the business owners. So it's like a partnership, but I can also remove people. Right. So if I find out that the businesses are not the best yeah. Or the
Orion Brown (00:52:01):
La Toya Sampson (00:52:02):
Yeah. Then it can be a flux thing. And, you know, eventually I plan to have like places for reviews and things like that. So, you know, you let the consumer kind of guide it a bit. I didn't want to like, have it be open to reviews and comments initially, because that also takes management. Like you have to manage
Orion Brown (00:52:24):
Tripping into comments.
La Toya Sampson (00:52:26):
Orion Brown (00:52:26):
Twitter is an entire comment section. That's all Twitter is it's the common section.
La Toya Sampson (00:52:31):
Yeah. So, you know, I wanted to make sure I had the resources and the manpower to be able to handle stuff like that. Yeah. Because it wouldn't be fair. Right. Like you have all this space for potential like vitriol and all this stuff with yes. No way for people to respond and all that stuff. So, you know, it's, it's a process. It's something definitely that I have considered. And I think the way that I am going and will continue to build it, it will lend to, you know, weeding out any kind of, you know, questionable kind of businesses and, and things like that. But a lot, all the stuff that I've bought so far I've loved. So
Orion Brown (00:53:13):
That endorsement right there. Right. And, and on the flip side, it's like in so far as we can give grace. And I am saying that a little bit, selfishly, I mentioned at the top of the, you know, somebody was like, oh, how, how fast can I get your stuff? And I'm like about that, <laugh> right. Because, but it is truly because we're under resourced, we're legitimately under resourced. And I can't tell you how many **** near sleepless nights I've had, because I don't want people to be upset. Not because I need the people pleasing, but I'm like, I want you to feel like you're taking well care of, and I don't want you to feel like often, you know, companies seem to be predatory in nature where it's like, I just want your money and you won't hear anything from me again. Um, and I'm over here. Like, I don't wanna disappoint you.
La Toya Sampson (00:53:59):
That's what the small business, right? Like, that's, that's kind of what you get. Right? The personalized touch, the handwritten notes, things like that, which I kind of love. Um, and you know, it's so funny. I've gotten a lot of rejections and especially at the beginning when I didn't have a product, cuz I started like reaching out and promoting before I had the directory, because it was like a especially coded website is like actually a web app. Um, so I was selling an idea to people. I was like, yeah, I have this thing that I wanna do. I can't show it to you yet, but do you wanna be on it? And people were like, uh, no <laugh> um, so like I've actually patronized a lot of those, um, companies. And I was just like, Ooh, this customer service is bad. So it's like, maybe this was a good sign. Um, that I, you shouldn't have been on the director in the first place. Maybe it's a sign from God, but right. Yeah. Like I have through, you know, one, one business, actually she closed her doors. Um, she's actually helping the homeless. She like sold out her product and is out helping homeless people. So I had to move, remove her. So I've had to remove like that. Yeah. Um, but it's is
Orion Brown (00:55:17):
This the woman in LA
La Toya Sampson (00:55:19):
LA mm-hmm she's in Texas. Okay. Yeah.
Orion Brown (00:55:22):
There's one in LA that I I've, I've been kind of keeping track of, but I that's another thing like we have heart for like I, another thing I was telling somebody the other day was like, you can't, you can't see us stand for something without it benefiting another community. Like we are always like, how can we, oh, actually it was cuz I was doing an interview with cultures magazine and I was talking to Donny who who's a founder and the chief editor and we were talking about travel products and you know, you get 'em in the hotels and stuff. And when I first started doing research for black travel box, I'm doing all this social listening. So basically like crawling through everybody's Facebook pages and comments and all that stuff. Just listening what they're talking about. Yeah. And it was so many women that were like, oh yeah, I can't touch that shampoo, but you know what I do do cuz I paid for it and you know, they're so cute. I take them every day and then I take my collection and then I go home and then I put them into care packages for the homeless and I, the first person I heard, I was like, oh you are just a Saint, the fifth person. Right. The 10th person, the 20th person. I was like, this is totally a thing. Yeah. Where nobody told us to do that. Right. You know? And, and we just find ways to, to be benevolent where we can, which I love that about us. Yeah.
La Toya Sampson (00:56:44):
I love that.
Orion Brown (00:56:45):
La Toya Sampson (00:56:46):
Oh, thank you. Nice Trini accent. Yes. Are you Trini too? Hi.
Orion Brown (00:56:50):
A a so I, I, before we go, I want people to a, be able to find you, so tell us where we can find you. And um, yeah. And, and also I just, I, I was thinking about your, your marketplace and how value added that is to the community. So we wanna make sure we can find you there and, and, you know, hit up some of your favorites there as well. So tell, tell everybody where they can find you.
La Toya Sampson (00:57:19):
Yes. So this is my personal Instagram, Dr. Toya MD. And the only reason I put MD at the end, not because I'm trying to flex, but because Dr. Toya was taken, <laugh>
Orion Brown (00:57:30):
Flex on him, flex on him, flex on him, flex on flex girl, flex on him. I love that. Well that, and also it delineates what the doctorate is because you can have a PhD and not be an MD. Or if y'all been watching black lady sketch show she's, she's
La Toya Sampson (00:57:53):
Like, that's, that's like Dr. OCA, like seriously, when I'm talking to people who like, especially my friends from Trinidad or just, you know, other people, I'm just like all this black ****. I'm just like, do you think I'm Dr. Hadasa like, is that what's happening?
Orion Brown (00:58:09):
No, she's a whole hot mess in the best way, but she's a whole hot
La Toya Sampson (00:58:13):
Mess. I love it. She's like my favorite character. Uh, but yes, I digress. So yes, Dr. Toy
Orion Brown (00:58:19):
MD, she's a whole nother episode for us to talk just about black lady sketch show. And y'all checking out because there's some great Easter eggs about black travel being asy and all kinds of stuff. So I'm like, how can I get clips? <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (00:58:33):
You know, I don't think, cause it's the entire season now we started watching and then I stopped, but it seems like the entire thing is out. Is it
Orion Brown (00:58:40):
This season? I think the last one should be out. If it's not last Friday should be this Friday.
La Toya Sampson (00:58:46):
Okay. Yeah, I have to, I have to get, cuz I just, we didn't even talk about that. I just came back in tri lad like a week ago. So
Orion Brown (00:58:55):
You gotta come back now. You just gotta come back.
La Toya Sampson (00:58:58):
I know we didn't even talk about my, my grief ship with the 11. People's like a lot of it's a lot of
Orion Brown (00:59:04):
Stuff. I feel like we, we, we spoke without speaking, as soon as you said 11 people, it was like, huh. Oh yeah. Mm-hmm <affirmative> okay. We got it. Um <laugh> but no, we'll have to, you have to come back again. I wanna talk to you and you mentioned that you wanted to go to Morocco. I will be to Morocco in three weeks. And so I'm really excited for that. So I'll tell you all about my trip too. Oh my gosh. I feel like I've learned so much from you and, and I love that you love to teach and talk and explain. Um, so thank you for that. Cuz we talked about frustrations with not getting that kind of care and love. Yeah. And um, now I'm, I'm, I'm fascinated. I'm absolutely fascinated. And I love what you do and you took a week that was a whole hotness and made it so much fun.
Orion Brown (00:59:55):
So I appreciate you for coming. This has been so much fun and y'all been in the comments cutting up. I see Y making me look comments all the way through. I appreciate you. I hope y'all have also gotten, um, you know, a little hump day, uh, uh, spark out of this. Uh, I always tell people the reason why I created, um, wind down Wednesdays and I didn't create it as in like Columbus created south America. <laugh> ain't that kind of creation. But the reason why I created it for black travel box was because it was the middle of COVID and I was like, I have nowhere to escape to cause travel is self care and what is it like, how can I get back to something that feels like that spark? And I love that moment. You know, when you, you book like you pay for it, you're not about to get your money back.
Orion Brown (01:00:47):
And you're like, oh, I'm going going? Yes. I don't care if somebody wants to have a meeting, I don't care if these other things are happening. I am going going. And then he started getting excited. I don't know about y'all, but I start to, I start to dance in the shoulders when I, when I'm book booked and I wanted to create that with wind downs. Yeah. And even though the world has opened back up, I feel like we've had such amazing conversations even in the last few months and certainly today where it's just, I'm excited again. I'm like, dang, couldn me. Get out here. Let me do some more stuff. So I love it.
La Toya Sampson (01:01:19):
But yeah, I didn't, you know, I, we got sidetracked when I was talking about my MD somehow. I don't know how we got there. I didn't actually give the handles for by default. So yes. So it's by default.com and it's B U Y D E F a U lt.com.
Orion Brown (01:01:35):
The play on words here, I'm here for it buy like with your money default.
La Toya Sampson (01:01:40):
Yes. And if anybody who missed it, it's everything, all the products, all the services, all the professionals are black by default. So you know that everything on there is for you. It's for us, it's just, you know, that's
Orion Brown (01:01:53):
For us by us. I love it. I love it. And I can't wait to hear about the next chapter. So I feel like we should be following you, you on Instagram as well to see what comes next.
La Toya Sampson (01:02:06):
Yes. So follow Dr. Toya MD by default, I had to buy B U Y D F a ult. Um, wasn't available. So I had to put it underscore. So it's B Y underscore default on Instagram. Um, I don't know. People, people keep throwing **** because I use Facebook still, but I'm on Facebook too. I, I,
Orion Brown (01:02:27):
Facebook is still a whole platform. Y'all I mean, I understand that we've evolved, but I was back in my day, my college was like maybe the ninth school to get on the platform. Right. I've been around that long. So the Facebook you see today, ours was way stripped down. I still have friends during, in my space. Like, let's just,
La Toya Sampson (01:02:45):
Oh, you know, I never got into my space. I don't know. I just couldn't know.
Orion Brown (01:02:50):
I have like a, a, my, a MySpace summary. It was all about like, uh, uh, passive aggressive, like postings that was like clearly about people, but not seeing who they are. Cause college. Like, why not? Um, we've grown, we've got growth.
La Toya Sampson (01:03:06):
I remember being so ****** when Facebook silent and people who weren't in university come in. I was like, ah, this is just supposed to be for us. I dunno.
Orion Brown (01:03:15):
Right. We're special.
La Toya Sampson (01:03:17):
Exactly. Like, and like I took down like all my cause I used to take, I take a lot of pictures. I thought I was a, I'm a amateur photographer at one point. Um, so I had like 20 something albums. I had to like hide them all because
Orion Brown (01:03:30):
Yeah, cause you don't know who's looking through it now.
La Toya Sampson (01:03:32):
Orion Brown (01:03:33):
It was cool when it was other 20 year olds. Exactly. Now when it's like random 65 year old dudes, it's like, Ugh, I don't know how I feel about that. Right. But I will say Facebook, particularly for me is, has some really great travel communities. So I definitely stay plugged in there. Um, and then if I wanna stock, like, you know, somebody I used to work with and they it's all in there, it's easy. You, they, they put all their stuff out there. It's
La Toya Sampson (01:03:56):
Orion Brown (01:03:57):
And there's always that one friend that hasn't updated their photo or put any updates on for like 15 years. But then the rest of 'em they're just like life vomit. Just tell, sharing everything. <laugh>
La Toya Sampson (01:04:08):
A lot. I don't know. It just seems like you said community. It seems like you can share more and especially because you can, you can type more, the posts tend to be longer and the groups have been the most valuable for me. Um, mm-hmm <affirmative> and they've gotten me through a lot of stuff because during the pandemic I was postpartum. I came off social media completely, but I stayed on Facebook because I had a breastfeeding group that helped me. I had like a
Orion Brown (01:04:34):
La Toya Sampson (01:04:34):
Group. So it was just like, there's still value there. Um, so I don't think I'll ever leave Facebook, but people hate on what I tell people I'm on Facebook. They're like, Ugh.
Orion Brown (01:04:44):
That's whatever. I, if you told me that there was a by default group on Facebook, I would totally join it. So
La Toya Sampson (01:04:51):
There's page on Facebook, but I dunno, business pages on Facebook, um, they it's difficult to get traction, um, because they want you to pay, like they want you to add,
Orion Brown (01:05:03):
Just make a free group girl, just make a free group. Go ahead. <laugh> this has been so much fun. I I'm I've absolutely loved it. I, you have to come back like you have to now. Yes, because we we're now best friends. That's the thing totally happened. Uh, and we have traveled to talk about and all kinds of other things. And this has been an absolute delight. Thank you so much. Thank you for helping me. I love it
La Toya Sampson (01:05:27):
This so much, cuz I tried to log on to see. And the first time I logged on, I told my friend who introduced, introduced me to you. I was like, oh, I'm so intimidated. She's so fun and funny. And I was just like, am I gonna gonna be able to talk to her? But it's, you're great. You're such a great host. And like I have a YouTube channel and I interview people. So I know how difficult it is to do this, but you're amazing. This
Orion Brown (01:05:52):
Is the second reason why it's a wind down is because there's boost. So it, it makes it a lot easier to y'all think I'm kidding. I was very nervous to be on live or anything like sweating, like crazy. And uh, and I still have some anxiety around it, which is it's, it's easy, but it's easy in the sense that once you get in and you're talking to great people, it's easy, but sometimes you need a few sips or whatever your equivalent is like, you know, squeezy balls, whatever you need. But, um, I really appreciate that. And, and I, I, I appreciate the kudos and I appreciate the flowers, uh, cuz it is With that said I'm not gonna keep everybody we've been on for like almost hour and a half.
La Toya Sampson (01:06:40):
I was supposed every time, like we gonna wrap it up and then we start talking again. <laugh>
Orion Brown (01:06:45):
I know you're coming back, you're coming back. It's totally a deal. It's a done deal. Uh, and we'll definitely chat and, and talk more. Cause I think there's so much more for us to dig into. Thank you so much for coming. This is I, I you've really been a blessing. I appreciate you.
La Toya Sampson (01:06:59):
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much for sharing your platform. I really appreciate it. I've had a lot of fun.
Orion Brown (01:07:03):
Yay. And to all of you who have been popping in, popping out, making chat, waving, I'll make a chat wave in all of that. I appreciate you. I hope you got something out of it. If you just came in and you missed it, uh, go run. We're gonna run it right back in our IG. So if you go into our, I G TV, all of our prior episodes in there, this won't be in by the end of the evening, you can go back, share it with your friends and then come back next week. We try to do this every single Wednesday. I usually only miss it when there's like something random that I have to do or I'm sick or I get dished. I have gotten dished a couple times and I was like, But it's also like when you have plans, one
La Toya Sampson (01:07:42):
Orion Brown (01:07:43):
La Toya Sampson (01:07:43):
I had to reschedule. I'm one of those people, because I was like, you know, I was in Trinidad and I was like, is my internet gonna be okay? I, I was freaking out. That's
Orion Brown (01:07:55):
A reasonable reason. That's totally reasonable.
La Toya Sampson (01:07:58):
Orion Brown (01:07:59):
Like I've had people be like, oh yeah, I did say I was gonna do that. Mm. Full stop. So in the case <laugh> but we're gonna be back. You guys keep coming back. Uh, I appreciate you. I love you. I appreciate you. As, as a guest. I appreciate you all as an audience and cheers. Y'all it's all downhill from here. I hope you have a great great week play. All right, everybody. Bye.
Ellee is in the building - and this week she's showing us what it means to be a globe trotting Travel Crush. This native New Yorker has climbed the pyramids of Egypt, took her whole life in her hands on the swings in Bali, and she's still pumped for more challenging, new adventures. Read on for her tips on having magical experiences without breaking the bank, her favorite hack for buying cheap flights, and how she stays in villas without the hefty price tag.
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