Who am I?

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"Not all who wander are lost."  - Tolkien

I wasn't a kid who was taken on too many exotic foreign holidays, but my curiousity knew no bounds.  At the tender age of 18, I took a leap of faith and bought a one-month unlimited Eurotrain ticket, travelling down through France and Italy, through Hungary, down to Greece and back through the Balkans.  My eyes were opened...that ticket was all it took.

Two years later, half way through my degree, I took a year out, worked for half a year solid then threw caution to the wind and spent an entire week’s wages on a sturdy backpack. Soon after, I set off for Latin America, where I spent six months wandering from Panama to Cuba (and every country in between).  I returned, tanned (equatorial sun can be a beast!), thin (even the hardiest traveler shouldn't leave home without imodium) and a great deal wiser.

As a freelance editor and writer, I've deliberately organised my professional life to "fit in" around my travels.  As a result, the last 20 years have seen me "lost" in Nepal, China, Malaysia, and Indonesia and I've hitchhiked both through Southern and Eastern Africa, dived in the Yucutan peninsula of Mexico and journeyed down the eastern coast of Australia.  Living in the United States, road trips were a must - from California up to Seattle and down to Mexico,  across to Nevada, Arizona New Mexico and Texas, and from Miami down to Key West. And then there were my memorable journeys through India (from the lusj Keralan beaches, to imposing Rajasthani forts and awe-inspiring Himalayan mountains in Himachal Pradesh).

Some things don't change though.  I always travel solo, using the time it gives me to ponder, read and strike up random conversations with locals.  I take a backpack with the bare essentials, plus my trust Swiss army knife and a notebook.  A cellphone and laptop are an absolute "no" for me - they stay at home with my heels.  I check in with family and friends, periodically, but a lot of the time I'm incommunicado.  And I've yet to stay in a five star hotel, preferring guest houses, tents, mud huts and, occasionally, the hospitality of a friendly stranger...

Today, living between Europe and the Middle East, I'm still in a constant state of wandering, and consider myself as much a travel addict as 25 years ago.  The world is big, exciting and beautiful, and every trip I take continues to leave me struck by what's there for the taking, if we just step off the beaten track and look hard.  Hitting the road comes naturally to me, as does writing the stories here.  Read and be inspired...

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