Fathom Questionnaire

Meet the Travel Writer: Fiona Caulfield

by Fiona Caulfield

Hometown: Hardys Bay, Australia, and Bangalore, India.

Occupation: Travel writer and futurist.

Favorite destinations: India, Hardys Bay, Manhattan, Tokyo, London, Paris, Kathmandu, Hong Kong.

Dying to visit: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; Hobart, Tasmania; Mt. Elbrus, St.Petersburg, and Moscow, Russia; Oaxen, Swedish archipelago; The Lightning Field near Quemado, New Mexico.

Bizarre travel rituals: Despite frequent travelling, I hate packing, and the night before I review everything I own to see what will make the suitcase. My ultimate fantasy is for a butler to do it for me.

In-flight relaxation regime: A book, a film, a glass of wine, and (best of all) a pen and notebook.

Always in carry-on: Fine cashmere tunic by Shalini Subramanian from Plantation House.

Concierge or DIY? Both.

See it all or take it easy? See the best, then take it easy.

Drive or be driven? Be driven, especially in India.

Travel hero: Ryszard Kapuscinski, Paddy Leigh Fermor, Pico Iyer, Colin Thuberon, Jan Morris.

Weirdest thing seen on travels: My boyfriend eating BBQ'd rat on a mountain in Africa — in preference to my cooking. Now ex-boyfriend.

Best hotel amenity: Moroccan Rose Otto bath oil at the Upper House Hotel. The oil is steam-distilled from rose petals picked at dawn. The view from the bathtub across the spectacular Hong Kong harbour doesn't hurt.

Favorite childhood travel memory: As a small child, I received weekly postcards from my father when he was away at sea. He was in the navy, visiting what seemed then as impossibly exotic locations. These postcards and his rich storytelling ignited my lifelong passion for travel.

I dream about a meal at home, which is a 1927 fishing cottage north of Sydney.

Everywhere I go, I check out the markets — flowers, produce, cloth, gems, camels, and flea markets.

When I arrive in a new place, I learn the lay of the land by reading, walking, and talking.

I always bring home way more than I intended. New perspectives, new friends, new ideas, new tastes, new smells, and (if I am honest) nine times out of ten, new shoes!

If I never return to _____, it'll be too soon because _____. Never say never!

I travel for the opportunity to learn and for the chance to live more fully and more consciously.


Website: lovetravelguides.com
Facebook: lovetravel
Twitter: @fionacaulfield
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