Because Couchsurfing's first video was (and still is) successful in promoting this awesome new way of traveling (hey, it ain't just about the accommodation), the cool folks from Couchsurfing's Headquarters thought of coming up with more videos. Two videos that will show the nitty gritty of hosting and surfing, and another that will tackle about safety.
Hence, the casting call. And a casting call like no other. With scenes to be shot in Thailand, Australia, Turkey (and I believe Kenya too), the cast will depict the diversity of the Couchsurfing population.
When I saw Australia on the short list, I was like, "Oh gosh this is miiine!"... 'Til I got to the part that says "We'll get in touch if we think you're a good fit for the project.". And then I went "Ugh!". I tried my luck anyway and filled out the questionnaire.
One question goes, "Why should you be in a CouchSurfing video? (Tell us what makes you awesome! This is an opportunity to shine so don't be shy about why you would be great in one of these videos)". Unsure of how to sell myself, I merely answered "I've couchsurfed single, married, pregnant and now I'm couchsurfing with my toddler."
An email arrived the next day from coordinator Heather saying they're interested! A Skype interview (by Heather herself and the director Justin) followed weeks after and the rest I guess is err, history.
Like Reality TV Stars
On shooting day, the crew arrived at my in-law's house 8:30 AM on the dot. Though they started setting up early, the actual interview began around midday and lasted for about an hour because of technical issues. In case you missed it, I just mentioned that I had an hour-long interview! Yep, that's how exhausting production can be.
The camera followed us around the house as if we were reality TV stars (I expected extreme close up shots, that why I uhm, cut my own bangs to cover ze zits!). It's one of the creepiest things I've experienced in like, my whole life (I was on a variety show ages ago, but yah know, the scripted kind).
After the interview, we all rushed to the Australian Walkabout Wildlife Park to meet other Couchsurfers who patiently waited for us. We were almost three hours late. The events shown on the videos weren't staged. They're all real experiences. It ain't seen on any of the two videos, but the Couchsurfers we did a day trip with, we actually just met for the first time.
Several others were also interviewed while we made the most out of our free admission to the park where visitors could walk alongside emus and watch free range kangaroos (yes, their meat is for legal consumption) hop. I saw a Tasmanian devil and a dingo for the first time, and touched a koala for the first time as well! About 5-ish we had to unfortunately "pack up" for the park was about to close.
And then, we waited for a couple of months to view the outcome.
The Final Product
There's just so much heart poured into this project that's why the videos radiate with positive vibes. We only have good things to say about this hospitality network and we hope we're able to convince you to join. Play the three videos so you'll have an idea of what I've been chattering about!
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