Where do you call home, and what’s your insider secret for someone who is a visitor there?
Brooklyn – about ten minutes away from the inimitable Holly Morris! We think there should be an episode on the borough, there’s so much happening here. You can visit the world in day: from Indian temples, to the best Dim Sum to Russian Baths in Brighton Beach…everyone from everywhere is represented somewhere in Brooklyn.
Fan Q: Where is your favourite place in Asia?
Asia is the first region I travelled to when I graduated from college. I taught English in Japan and fell in love with the culture and the people. But then there’s Vietnam with its complicated history, incredible food and scenery; no wait – Myanmar. The people are so warm there and it’s just opening up to the world. And Singapore – the food, oh the food (I need Chili Crabs now!). Also one of my favorite cities on the planet is in Asia – Kashgar. But India – India, there’s no place like it. Sri Lanka … someone stop me…!
What’s on your travel bucket list?
Easy: Bhutan. Ethiopia. Sequoia National Park in California.
Must-have personal item you take travelling?
I’m a pretty low-maintenance person in general and I tend to travel lightly. That said, I have some special socks prepared for long flights and a silk sleeping bag for hostels that might be offering some extra ‘creature’ comforts.
Best place you’ve been to that’s ideal for people travelling on a budget?
Values fluctuate and one person’s cheap might be another’s pricey. I lived in Argentina for a few years and at this point in time it’s an incredible place to travel and depending on where you come from, very affordable. The dollar is strong at the moment. Go! Tango!
And though I’ve never done it personally (but I want to!) WWOOFING seems like a great way to really become entrenched in a new place and meet people.
One life lesson learned while travelling that’s stayed with you?
Never compliment a Kuwaiti on something. They are culturally obliged to give it to you! Also, the old standard, “Don’t judge another til you’ve walked in their shoes” comes to mind.
What show would you like to make an X years later (sequel) of?
I’d love to return to Lebanon. We visited there after they had begun to heal from the 90’s and just before it all kicked off again in 2006. The people there are incredible. They were beyond welcoming and so happy to share their stories. I often think of the people I met on that trip and wonder how they are. That said, I feel that way about many places I’ve been. You know how it is when you travel, deep connections can form even from brief encounters.
What are your current pet projects?
Sea Nation! It’s been out in the world for a couple of years but it was a great adventure. We hitchhiked through the Caribbean by boat. No plans. No agenda other than to look for answers about what makes a “good life.” Locals and the sailing community were so supportive. Including Sir Richard Branson himself. If you are curious you can find us at facebook.com/SeaNationTV
How do you see people consuming and gathering their travel info and inspiration in the future?
I follow several Instagram travel sites that on a daily basis connect me to the world at large in a visceral way. The world is changing so quickly, and we are all connected in ways we never were before. But everyone needs a bucket list. Make your list of dream travel destinations and keep it at the forefront of your mind. If you have the travel bug, get out there – don’t just watch it unfold through social media. Live life large!
We are constantly asked how to get a job like yours: what’s your advice for anyone who wants to become a presenter/producer/content creator within the travel realm?
It seems to me that if you have a unique point of view, you can create an identity and find like-minds out there. Instagram! Blog! Connect with other travellers. And, if you want to roll the dice, make a showreel and put it online. I got really lucky and despite no on-camera experience and an audition where a cat peed on me, I knocked over a fruit stand and an eccentric artist started yelling at me in front of everyone….Globe Trekker gave me a chance! But isn’t that life? Isn’t that travel? It’s often when things go wrong that you find out who you really are.
Describe yourself in a Tweet (140 characters):
I’ll try but if you talk to any of the directors I’ve worked with, brevity is not my strong suit.