Travels with My Hat is a memoir of my adventures as a travel writer
in Africa, South Asia and the Arab world. Beautifully designed, it is lavishly illustrated with
photographs and maps and includes poignant correspondence with my mother who had never left Australia.
Christine who lives in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, is available for public or private talks. Hear her adventures first-hand, see her photographs and discuss current and historical events with this inspiring solo traveller.
GREAT MOMENTS IN TRAVEL
When I would think, well this is what I've come for and the physical and psychological demands of the effort to get here, are now worth it...
When I first set foot in Morocco as a young backpacker in the 1960s,
I was captivated by the ever changing desert and mountain scenery, its colourful peoples
and fascinating souqs. My book Collins Independent Travellers Guide to Morocco was published in 1990.
WORLD WATER DAY
Some 1.3 billion people in the world lack access to clean water. Women and children spend an estimated 200 million hours a day hauling water, often over great distances from the source. Here Somali refugees in the Horn of Africa, one of the driest places on earth.
My career as a travel writer has taken me to more than sixty countries where I have enjoyed many memorable meals and while I don’t know about you, breakfast for me is the best meal of the day. A hearty and healthy breakfast can set you up until dinner time, especially when you’re travelling.
Several breakfasts stand out from my experiences ‘on the hoof’ as it were.
Unforgettable was beluga caviar for breakfast in Babolsar, a Caspian Sea resort in Iran. But equally memorable was a simple plate of fried egg and paratha when I awoke starving, one morning in Baltistan, a mountainous agency in north east Pakistan. Another breakfast I enjoyed was one Christmas in Bruges when the hotel served smoked eels for Asian guests. And loving eel, I have to confess to scoffing the lot before they came downstairs. Though many years ago now, I recall a splendid petit-dejeuner in a belle-epoque hotel overlooking Lake Geneva. Then just recently I found my pick of global breakfasts at the Grand Hotel in Kolkata.
While I’d travelled all over India, I had never been to Kolkata and as much as I wanted to visit the dowager city, I wanted to stay at the Grand, pleasure dome of society during the British Raj and jewel in the crown of the Oberoi hotels chain.
The surprise of this majestic old hotel with its splendid location and attentive staff was the awesome breakfast devised by its executive chef, Saurav Banerjee, who presides over Oberoi’s restaurants enjoying a reputation for the best cuisine in town.
About Travels with My Hat
Australian photojournalist and author. Used London as a base for nearly forty years while freelancing in the Middle East, Arabian peninsular, Africa and South Asia. Have written and illustrated more than a dozen books and travel guides. Operates a well regarded religious images stock photo library: www.worldreligions.co.uk. Live in Leura in the Blue Mountains outside Sydney.