I first started travelling when I was 6 months old- around Europe in a combi van. My parents always travelled a lot and being the hippy era I was taken everywhere with them.
Mum grew up in Sri Lanka and Dad and I were both born in Weymouth on the south west coast of England where we all lived until I completed pre school. Then we moved to a town on the south east coast of Australia.
Being passionate travelers and having family all over the world we went overseas every few years which was a great experience that I will be forever grateful for- even if it means I caught the travel bug early.
In year four we spent 6 months overseas and I was taught basic Maths and English by my dad. I learnt much more about life and the big world that was out there than I ever would have by staying behind for school.
When I finished high school my parents promptly gave me a round the world ticket with an open return so I went back to Weymouth to live with grandma and work in a restaurant owned by my dads friend. And so began my grand tour around thirteen countries in Europe in three months with a girlfriend I had met in the restaurant to many of the places I had been to as a baby in the back of a van but could not remember.
Since then I have travelled back to Sri Lanka and many places by myself , with friends and with family.
Related posts: I first started writing
I first started writing about life when I was quite young. My family friend still raves about my early writing skills on my first book about his daughters first birthday. I used to write and illustrate short stories.
I also won an award in primary school for writing a multicultural story but I always thought at the time that they gave it to me on a sympathy vote.
I had a poem that I wrote about swimming on the beach published in the annual year book in high school.
I also travelled with my parents a lot as a child and kept detailed diaries. I always wanted to be a travel writer, so even though these diaries are out of date, they could be used as some kind of travel retrospective.
At university I studied Journalism as my major and was promptly disillusioned by my lecturers proclaiming I will never be able to write want I want and the pay is terrible- one way to weed out those without real drive and passion for news I guess! I decided I was more of a fiction writer and rebelled in such electives as fictocritical and creative writing. I also found I was distinction worthy in editing and publishing- so maybe I gave up on journalism too easily, but that’s the way it went. I did get published in a Sydney Olympics newsletter while I was there- an interview with a young Perth gymnast that I did over the phone.
A few years out of university I redirected one of my university pieces on my grand tour travel around Europe and wrote a new travel piece on my hometown to apply to write at the Lonely Planet- my dream job- getting paid to travel and write about it and hence everyone else’s dream job too! I did not make the cut and unfortunately did not get much feedback either. I did get published in the Thorn Tree Forum on their website- by blogging the “Top 5 Wildlife to Spot in California.”
In my places of employment I have endeavored to keep the writing going by writing the entire or pieces of the internal newsletters, but even this writing has gone by the wayside of late as I have now been working in events for over seven years so work is all about logistics, checklists and contact sheets.