Well, I’ve loaded up a few more articles – boy, has that been a trip into the fading depths of my memory! With a full-time job now and a household of animals to care for, I’d sort of forgotten just where in the world my writing has taken me. So it’s been an eye-opener to scan some of my old travel stories today and put them online.
It’s like having a look back through a colourful holiday diary! And it’s reminded me where some of my inspiration came from to go travelling in the first place. For me, it boils down to book and animals…
My first major trip, 3 months in South America, was partially inspired by early reading – a kids’ picture book in primary school about a capybara, which is a large South American rodent: Capyboppy by Bill Peet. Later in high school, I read the English naturalist Gerald Durrell’s stories of collecting animals in South America in the 1950’s, The Drunken Forest and The Whispering Land.
OK, it’s a bit eclectic and oddly old-fashioned for someone who was a teen in the 80’s, but it doesn’t really matter what inspires you as long as you do it, does it! So after a year or so of planning, I took off in early 2000, landing first in Argentina where I visited an ex-boyfriend whom I’d met at agricultural college in 1991. His family happened to live and work on an estancia at the southern-most point of Argentina. It’s so cold they have penguins living on the beaches of their property! Let’s not mention the war either, with their land bordering Chile, and soldiers populating the lighthouse next door. The soldiers used to leave the gates open during the Guerra de las Malvinas (Falklands War) – not a very neighbourly thing to do.
Anyway, I digress – there are many more stories from my travels, through Argentina, Chile, Brazil (in time for the Carnivale), Bolivia and Peru. I got some great travel articles, beautiful photos, and met some amazing people, so check out some of the articles 🙂