After spending 39 days in the Fijian wilderness as a castaway on the 37th season of “Survivor,” Dr. Alison Raybould, chief resident at the UNC Department of Medicine, is back in Chapel Hill and experiencing life as a local celebrity. During last Wednesday’s episode, Raybould secured a spot as one of the competition’s final eight contestants, getting one step closer to taking home the show’s $1 million prize. Raybould took time to reflect on life after the island with Daily Tar Heel senior writer Zach Goins.
The Daily Tar Heel: What part of the game were you least prepared for?
Alison Raybould: As a super fan of this game, I knew exactly what I was signing up for. I was prepared for the starvation, the fatigue, and the psychological turmoil. I knew that some seasons are hit with terrible weather, but I have to say, the first 14 days were truly miserable. It poured buckets of rain the whole time with horrific winds too, and we faced two cyclones. But even in those moments of sheer misery, I was still smiling because I was playing “Survivor.”
DTH: What was your main strategy heading into the season? Did you know what kind of player you wanted to be?
AR: I thought a lot about whether or not I reveal being a physician with my tribe, as I worried it would cause me to be an early threat. The theme of David vs. Goliath forced the Goliaths to not only explain their accomplishments but also to own those achievements, and this was something that I contested the first day on the barge. I wanted to be the underdog that everyone rooted for, yet here I was being told that I was some awful giant who needed to fall.