10K Saturday with Becca McCoy!
Alison: Hey, 10k Dollar Day fans and friends, It's Alison Burns and we are coming to you live from American Stage in Saint Pete. I am actually in rehearsals for Mamma Mia presently, and we are so excited on this Saturday to have a very special guest. Becca McCoy is in the house. Say hello, Becca.
Becca: Hello. Thank you for having me.
Alison: So, Becca is playing Rosie, and I'm playing Donna in Mamma Mia and we are having a blast. And so I was like, what better way to start off this rehearsal week than to get her in on this 10k Saturday, mostly because, unlike myself and Lulu, who are not well-traveled and just do imaginary trips, Becca actually travels the world, you guys. Like full-on world traveler extraordinaire. So before we even start, I'm just going to ask her to tell us a little bit about this past year. Just a little history about her world travels, maybe her favorite place or something like that. So Becca, take it away.
Becca: Okay. Well, yes. Um, I found myself divorced at forty and I had been engaged or married since I was 17, so it was this massive, massive life change. And I ran on kind of the hamster wheel of keeping my life going in that pre-established way for a couple of more months. And then I just needed to hit a reset button in a really purposeful fashion.
So I quit my job, sold my house, put everything in storage, donated my car, got my daughter situated with my parents and put her into fifth grade. And then I just got on a plane and went to New York. And from there, the travel -- one begot the next thing, because I was in New York and I was like, well, it's pretty cheap to just fly to London, so I might as well fly to London.
Alison: So you didn't know when you first went to New York?
Becca: No, no. So it did not start by design. Now, I'm trying to finish it by design, but um, yeah, I went to, went to New York, then flew to London and I was like, well, might as well just go on the train and go to France. It's right there. So did that, went back to New York. Then, you know, Thanksgiving was coming up and my ex-husband had our daughter up in Indiana with his family, which was exactly what I wanted, but I didn't want to have a traditional Thanksgiving without her for the first time. So I asked my best friend, I was like, do you want to go to New Orleans for a week? So we got on a plane, went to New Orleans for a week.
And then I asked my daughter what I could do for her to help with the divorce and all of the life changes that she’d had. And she said, I want to go to Australia. And I was like, done. So I booked Australia, New Zealand and Fiji for this coming June. But then as I was booking that, I thought, well what would I do if I could cross something off my bucket list? And I was like, oh wait, I can, because I have time, and money, and health, and that's all that you have to have to be able to travel.
So I decided the number one thing I wanted to do was chase the northern lights and I found these domes called Borealis Base Camp that are about 35 miles north of Fairbanks, Alaska. And it's this little climate controlled like mini yurt and it has an acrylic ceiling. So it was 69 degrees. I had a full bathroom, kitchenette, king size bed, and the Perseids meteor shower was happening that weekend, though the Aurora were visible every single night. There was an executive chef, I ate better than I ate in New Orleans. It was absolutely unbelievable.
Alison: That's amazing. Yeah. We've actually talked about northern lights so many times on this podcast. It is like Bucket List.
Becca: It is absolutely. But now I'm hooked. Now it's like seeing the leaves change in the fall. Like, I'm like, okay, now I have to see them from Canada and Norway and Iceland.
Alison: I know it's addicting, right? Lulu and I have talked about that when starting this. I mean, she travels for work occasionally and I've never traveled. I've been to Hawaii, that's about it. Um, but doing all this research, the world is so big and we are so small, it's just awesome.
Becca: So when I got done with, with, um, Alaska, I was like, oh, I'm done. I'm hooked now. And so now on purpose, I have something happening every single month to get me up to the year mark. And then I'm planning to create something out of it. A book or a play or both.
Becca: Oh, thank you.
Alison: So cool. So with 10k, we like to call this our little bonus episode. We're gonna backtrack a little bit and we'll come back to some of our travel talks. But first I want to know, do you currently have an obsession?
Becca: I always have...
Alison: Something you're obsessed with?
Becca: Obsessions! Yes. Um, my perpetual obsession is visual art and visual artists, because we traffic in ephemeral and experiential goods, but we're still giving form to humanities through our art. They give tangible form to humanity through their art and they get to flirt with immortality in a way that we don't. It's amazing to me to see a blank piece of paper, then music notes go on it and there's a song, or a painting’s created. I'm so in awe of visual artists.
So at the moment, the other thing that I've been spending money on, is experiences and art, and I feel like you will never regret a penny spent on either of those two things. So I've been cranking out a new art collection, especially of local artists. So just the other day I bought my first Frank Strunk, he's a metal artist in Saint Petersburg, and he's absolutely phenomenal. And I bought a Jennifer Kosharek painting. She has one of the most distinct voices in the area, maybe anywhere. She has really whimsical Russian doll-looking pieces. Her stuff is highly recognizable immediately. I just posed nude for the first time for an artist --
Alison: -- living my best life.
Becca: -- it was amazing. It was the most empowering experience. And that was for Carrie Jadus who is like just another level, amazing visual artist. I just discovered a muralist comic book artist out of Tampa named Justin Groom. Carrie's husband, Mark Aeling, just put in this new sculpture at the Saint Pete Police Department. Like, so I've just been amassing a collection of original art.
Alison: And when you go to see this art, do you already have the piece in your mind, or are you the person that you're looking and then you see one and you're like, that's it. Inspired. I need it.
Becca: yes. I love to just buy whatever speaks to me. And sometimes, you know, artists are doing really smart things with Instagram in particular. Like Jennifer Kosharek was raising money for going to North Carolina to paint a mural. And so she had put up this piece and had this ridiculous bargain price on it to bid on on auction and I was like done, mine! and Frank Strunk, same thing. He put up this piece and it resonated with me so quickly that I just messaged him immediately and I was like, has anyone else jumped on it? If they haven't, it's mine.
Alison: Ah, that's so cool. And our listeners know that every beach that I traveled to in my imaginary travels, I always try to find a nude beach. It’s a bucket list for me. I know that's weird, but I want to be nude on a beach.
Becca: Well and now that I posed nude, I have since gone skinny dipping in daylight for the first time.
Becca: It was so fantastic. Like, I first was like, oh no, I'm going to wait until it's dark out cause I want to experience it, but I don't want… and then I was like, why are you being shame-based? Just get in, it's going to feel better in the sun anyway. And then you couldn't get me out of the pool. Every chance I got, I was back at the pool nude. It was amazing.
Alison: I love it. Okay, great obsession. I need art too. I always say that for my house. Like I need something that speaks to me. I need to, I need but first, I have to like redo my house. This is a whole another podcast.
Becca: Well and when I'm working on shows, a lot of the time to get out of the director's world and the dramaturgs world, which if you're reading a lot of source material about what you're working on, I feel like you're layering things on that aren't part of your job. And so I try to use nonverbal or non-language-based art to inform our language-based art. So I'm working on a show and I'll look for a painting that resonates with me in terms of that character, or a song that I hear and I feel like that gets me that character, so I've been using a lot of the other arts to work on our art and I find it so much more effective than just reading scholarly texts
Alison: Yes. So smart. All right. Next up, wishlist. If you could have anything right now you're like, oh, I wish I had this. What is it?
Becca: I'm always jonesing for my next tattoo. I am running out of real estate to use. I have a constant list in my mind of the next time I go get a tattoo, it's going to be this and it's going to be there. Um, travel wise, I want to see the monarch butterfly migration.
Alison: Ooh, okay.
Becca: That is one of my bucket list travel pieces and then like, just basic wishlist… I need to figure out how to move on with my life and with a slightly more sustainable way, perhaps. And yeah, so how to be gainfully employed while based out of my home.
Alison: Or marry rich...
Becca: You know, I mean that's ok too.
Alison: Not even married, just you know, find a sugar daddy. No, those are all very good. All right, so our big question, what we always love to ask, if you had $10,000 you had one day to spend it and you can't give it away, where would you go and what would you do?
Becca: I wish this was a harder question. It's so easy because every single time I go to New York, I go straight to Tiffany's and go straight and start putting rings on my fingers. I would just go to Tiffany's and eat a meal and spend $10,000 down and walk out the front door.
Alison: That's amazing. And that is not what I thought you'd say.
Becca: Oh my god, I'm obsessed with Tiffany's. I do. Every time I go to New York, I go to the engagement ring.
Becca: And just make them put them on my finger and look at them under the lights.
Alison: Do you pretend? Are you the one who's like, oh, hello? Like do you put on a character and you're like, let me play a little game. Like I have money.
Becca: Are you going to judge me openly?
Alison: No, not at all. Because listen, I did that in New York when I was looking for apartments. I would go see apartments way out of my price range and just make up stories about what I did, about who I was living with, who my dad was, like full on. So tell me your, your backstory to Tiffany's.
Becca: It depends. If I've just discovered, oh my gosh, I'm right by Tiffany's, surprise. We'll I'll go in and put rings on, but I happen to have by duffle bag or something and it's not, it doesn't look quite as good. But you know, if I'm dressed nicely and I'm just having my hand bag, then sure. I have even gone in pretending to be looking for the male engagement ring as if I'm going to propose, because the male engagement rings still look really, really beautiful, but they're a fraction of the price. So I even thought for a hot second about just buying one of those for myself just so that I would have a Tiffany ring.
Alison: So you want the ring, I know they make a ton of jewelry.
Becca: I mean I'll take whatever.
Alison: Whatever, you want the little blue box.
Becca: You could absolutely 10k one item in there, half an item in there. Um, but yeah, I would, I would just get any kind of overpriced household items or yeah.
Alison: That is a great 10K Day. I think Lulu did a 10k day in New York. Can't remember all the places she went. She did a lot of great eating. I did one, a 10k day nearby, in Jersey, but it was so hard to spend 10k I ended up renting a private jet and going to see Hamilton. So I ended up there. Now I know I didn't prep you on this, but since I kind of brought it up now at the end of every 10k episode, we also do highlight a charity. So off the cuff, is there a charity that if you had $10,000 and you can give it to a charity, or is there something that's near and dear to your heart?
Becca: Absolutely, easy easy. My friend Sherry Kendrick has a charity called Little Light of Mine. She's a professional photographer and she goes to All Children's Hospital and she provides professional portrait photographs of terminally ill children to the families.
Alison: Oh my goodness.
Becca: I was a music volunteer at All Children's for two years, working with terminally ill children. If you have a well child, it's the most extraordinary way to pay that forward. It's a lot. I mean it's a lot.
Alison: Oh, I can't even imagine.
Becca: I mean, think about what those families go through. The children are brave to levels that we can't even comprehend. So I know emotionally what it takes for Sherry to go in there and provide that service for the families and so Little Light of Mine, you can Google it and donate to her. Two hundred and fifty dollars, I think, covers one family session. But you can absolutely donate any amount of money. I think what she does is absolutely extraodinary.
Alison: And I love that name. It just brightens your heart immediately. That's awesome. Becca, thank you so much for this time. We are actually at the end of our lunch break here at Mamma Mia. Um, this was awesome.
Becca: Thank you.
Alison: You would need to start your own podcast and your adventures.
Becca: Oh, I'm logging everything down, friend. Everything.
Alison: That's amazing. I can't wait for your book. We're super excited. Guys, we're going to post all of Becca's uh, what are they called? The handles, handles...
Becca: All the things...
Alison: On Instagram.Tell us what your handles are and where you're located.
Alison: Perfect. You have a website?
Becca: I do, beccamccoy.com.
Alison: Easy breezy. Guys, make sure you follow Becca Mccoy. Listen, she's a rock star here and everywhere. Um, and soon worldwide. Worldwide famous. She travels everywhere. So thanks guys, so much. We will see you next Saturday. Bye.