I’m Dez, twentysomething, from England. I’d always wanted to travel but a few years back I quit my job, sold all my stuff and set out on an adventure. You can read more about what I’ve done and where here.
2. How many countries have you visited and where would like to settle down at some point (I know you fall in love in so many places, but choose one and tell us why)?
Actually very few, only 15 – but I like to stay a little longer in places to really experience them rather than just having an impressive amount of countries to list. Plus I work along the way, which means staying in one place a little while. As for settling down, I haven’t found anywhere that’d beat the good old UK just yet.
3. What do you miss most, aside from your family, from home?
Friends? Haha! I know that’s a cop-out! Umm, it’d have to be British tea. I usually get some care-packaged to me! I love trying new things, but sometimes you just want the taste of home.
4. What is the most common misconception that people have about you during your traveling?
That I’m Irish, because that’s where every red-head is from, apparently! It’s happened even after I’ve spoken to people, with clearly a non-Irish accent, that they’ve then gone on to ask where about in Ireland I’m from.
5. Is there any place which you wouldn’t visit again and why?
I’d never say never, but there are places I wouldn’t rush back to. Most recently, it would be Bangkok. I didn’t like the vibe there at all.
6. Where did you meet the friendliest people and how did you feel about being around them?
I have to say Tongans are the friendliest people (generally speaking) that I’ve met. Everyone is so chilled, everyone has time for a chat and you’re made to feel really welcome. At first I was a bit weary, because so often when travelling a conversation ends with a request, but Tongans generally just want to shoot the breeze with you.
7. Most embarrassing travel moment?
I bought some of the harem pants in Cambodia (tacky traveller item I know) to cover my knees to enter the Royal Palace. However, they joined at a very low point and as I stepped out of a tuk-tuk they split alllll the way. I had to hobble around the palace holding them together so as not to get arrested for public indecency or flashing my junk at the King.
8. What has been the most under-rated country/place you have been to and why? Most overrated country/place?
Most under-rated: South Korea. It’s amazing! So much culture, so many traditions yet so few visitors. As for over-rated: Yeah there’s a lot to do, but so much is targeted at tourists that some parts it feels like they are just resorts in the West.
9. Tell us about a favourite dish from the world and one from your country that everybody should try.
Probably the hardest question here! I love food, so so much. So it’s hard to narrow it down – I often have commitment issues when it comes to picking from a menu. In that regard, I’ll probably say Spanish tapas – because you can have a bit of everything!
I’m going to be a stereotype here, but nothing beats eating Fish, Chips and Mushy Peas at the seaside. Especially in the rain, also known as British summer.
10. What is your favourite music ?
My music taste is really varied. It depends on my mood and what I’m doing. It could be throwback 90s cheesy pop or dubstep, indie rock or speed garage. According to my play count, my most played artist is apparently Bob Marley.
11.What song from your country everybody should know?
Music from the UK tends to be pretty popular, so people probably do know them all anyway. But if they don’t, one of my favourite tracks is Kate Nash – Birds. So awesome.
Give us one of your favorite phrases in your mother tong and explain what it means.
I like the phrase “I’m off to see a man about a dog.” Is that used in other countries? If not, it’s the excuse you use to leave somewhere when you don’t want other people to know where you’re going.
12. Best foreign curse you know?
The Serbian curse: “Da Bog da ti zena rodila stonogu pa ceo zivot radio za cipele” – May your wife give birth to a centipede so you have to work for shoes all your life. It’s damning, yet creative enough to not need swear words. Awesome.
13. You have a chance to ask one question to anyone in history and get an honest reply – what is your question and to whom?
So many questions for so many people! But I think I’d have a chat with Fernando Magellan, the early explorer who is often credited as the first person to circumnavigate the globe. He didn’t quite make it, and died in the process. I’d ask him, was the journey worth it?
14. What is your favourite website (apart from social media platforms)?
I really like Buzzfeed, great way to kill time plus there is a lot of stuff that you can relate to or be inspired by. It’s not heavy, so great for a quick flick through and it’s super shareable.
15. One thing you don’t like about other travellers?
There’s no specific trait that I dislike about all other travellers, but one thing that does irritate me is when people wake me up when I’m sleeping by being inconsiderate. I’m such a grinch when I’m tired!
16. What has been your most valuable lesson learned from travel?
The world isn’t as bad as it appears on the news – I guess I knew it already, travel just confirmed it firsthand.