Updated: 4 days ago
Opportunities for adventure are all around. Will you heed the call? Today we are joined by Olivia Meighan, host of The Irish Survival Podcast (@the_Irish_survival_podcast) and lover of the natural world. 13-year-old Olivia wasn’t thrilled about the idea of being locked inside during the Coronavirus pandemic. Little did she know it would launch her on a whole new kind of adventure! She’s here to remind you that you’re never too young, or too old, to leverage your unique voice to create value in the world.
1:40 The Irish Survival Podcast
3:00 Sitting around the campfire
5:40 Treat wildlife like people
7:10 Mastering 2020 online tech
8:10 The outdoors is great craic
8:50 You won’t know if you don’t try
12:00 Visualize your ideal world
16:20 Limitless possibilities
Adrienne MacIain 0:00
Hi, everyone. Welcome to the That's Aloud podcast. I'm your hostess, Dr. Adrienne MacIain, and today we have Olivia Meighan all the way from Dublin, Ireland. Please introduce yourself.
Olivia Meighan 0:12
Hi, my name is Olivia Meighan and I make The Irish Survival Podcast. On my podcast, I review and talk about survival kits. The reason I made my podcast is because, during lockdown, I got really bored and decided to make a podcast using my knowledge of survival and technology. I basically saw Anchor and started recording. Podcasts are becoming the number one media platform. Because of lockdown, more and more people are listening to them. So I thought, How hard could it be? And the answer: it's so easy. I use Anchor, and they actually sponsor me. I was actually so bored in lockdown I started a blog. You can read it at theirishsurvivalpodcast01.wordpress.com. And during lockdown, I actually developed so many skills, including coding, web design, podcasting, blogging, and I've actually started doing loads of courses in marketing, which I think is a definite future for me, because I am only 13. And I actually started an Instagram for my podcast that's The Irish Survival Podcast, please check it out.
Adrienne MacIain 1:19
That's awesome. Thank you, Olivia, that was wonderful. You're so prepared. Most people are just like, 'Oh, I don't know, I'm like, me, and I do my stuff.' So Bravo, coming prepared there. So I love, first of all, I love that you are 13 and doing this. I think that's so great. I love this new kind of wave of young podcasters coming on the scene. What made you decide, 'Hey, I think a podcast is the way to get my my voice out there'?
Olivia Meighan 1:47
Well, in lockdown, I was listening to loads because it was just the only thing you could do. If anybody else was watching the TV, you just find a podcast you'd like and listen to it.
Adrienne MacIain 2:00
So where did your passion for survivalism come from?
Olivia Meighan 2:05
I have no idea. I just love going camping and I have loads of survival kits, and I was like, I can review these.
Adrienne MacIain 2:13
So tell us what is a survival kit exactly?
Olivia Meighan 2:15
So a survival kit is anything that you would bring with you into the world. You can have ones that are very small, or you can have ones in big bags with loads of extra things inside it.
Adrienne MacIain 2:29
So what are some of your favorites?
Olivia Meighan 2:33
There's ones that I've reviewed, one from the UK, it's called Polymath Products. And that one is one of my favorites.
Adrienne MacIain 2:43
What's it got in it?
Olivia Meighan 2:44
It has, it's really good, it has hot chocolate in it. And yeah, it has water purification tablets, which is really good. And just things like that. It's really cool.
Adrienne MacIain 2:58
That's great. So did you start camping with your family?
Olivia Meighan 3:02
Em, yeah, I think so. I can't really remember.
Adrienne MacIain 3:06
Interesting. So tell me about a time when you've been out, you know, camping, where you had just a really wonderful experience.
Olivia Meighan 3:18
Well, I was out with my family, and we were all sitting around the campfire. And it was dark out. And we were cooking marshmallows. And I just remember we were laughing and talking and just loved it. It was great.
Adrienne MacIain 3:37
Those family connections are so important, aren't they?
Olivia Meighan 3:40
Yeah, definitely. Me and my family, we're all very close. So...
Adrienne MacIain 3:44
That's great. Do they also enjoy survival and camping, or is that your kind of thing?
Olivia Meighan 3:51
Not that much. I'm the biggest fan of it. But yeah, sometimes they go.
Adrienne MacIain 3:58
What do you have in common with your family?
Olivia Meighan 4:01
And well, we're all very sporty. And yeah, we're a very active family. We like going on hikes sometimes, so sometimes it wouldn't really be a camp, it would be a hike. And yeah, we like taking my dogs for walks. Yeah.
Adrienne MacIain 4:23
Why do you think that's important to your family, to stay active?
Olivia Meighan 4:28
Just for the future, so you're healthy and safe and yeah.
Adrienne MacIain 4:34
Yeah. So you're taking care of your own body, but you're also kind of taking care of the earth.
Olivia Meighan 4:40
Adrienne MacIain 4:41
That's got to feel really good.
Olivia Meighan 4:43
Adrienne MacIain 4:45
So where are some of your favorite places to go into the wild?
Olivia Meighan 4:50
Ah, well, down in Wicklow there are mountains and you just set up your tent there and start camping.
Adrienne MacIain 4:56
Olivia Meighan 4:58
Yeah, I love it.
Adrienne MacIain 4:58
Yeah, I think It's so important for us to go out into nature, as humans, and kind of spend that time recognizing what the wild world is sort of supposed to look like. It's actually hard to find truly wild places anymore. A lot of the places that we think of as wild are actually kind of curated forests that have been kind of planted by, and planted and replanted, you know, cut down and then replanted by by people.
Olivia Meighan 5:27
Yeah, I love spending time outdoors. And it's such a shame that those trees are being cut down and all the wildlife are in danger. I don't like it at all.
Adrienne MacIain 5:37
Yeah, I don't like it at all, either. So what would you say is, you know, I, the first question I usually ask is what's the story the world isn't getting? What do you think is the story the world isn't getting about nature or wildlife?
Olivia Meighan 5:54
Well, the story people aren't getting is that you could treat them like people. Like, how would you like it if somebody came and took you, put you in a zoo, or killed your family? You wouldn't like it. So why are you doing it to animals?
Adrienne MacIain 6:09
And why are we doing it to trees, too? I mean, actually, trees?
Olivia Meighan 6:12
Yeah, you need them.
Adrienne MacIain 6:14
Yeah. And they communicate? Did you know this?
Olivia Meighan 6:17
Adrienne MacIain 6:17
They actually did these really cool studies, you know. What we think of as trees is just like the trunk, and the branches. But there's so much more going on underground. They have these really complicated root systems, and they have fungi...
Olivia Meighan 6:34
Adrienne MacIain 6:35
...that kind of grow through them, and help them to communicate with each other and share nutrients with each other. So even old stumps that look dead to us are being kept alive by the forest.
Olivia Meighan 6:48
Yeah. And the soil, it's great.
Adrienne MacIain 6:53
That's really cool. So, I think that's so neat because we think of those stumps as being kind of like, old, dead, worthless. But they're obviously useful to the forest in some way. Maybe they're learning something from the old-timers. Who knows?
Olivia Meighan 7:07
Yeah, not just a seat.
Adrienne MacIain 7:08
Exactly. It's a seat for us. Yeah. So, you know, you've already kind of touched on this, but I want to ask you, what was the greatest obstacle that yo