Monday, February 28, 2011

My top ten moments spent with locals: I met them by chance and they are still in my heart

1. Albanian Nona: She dotingly tends to my cuts after a near-death experience hiking to get to her mountain home.

2. Russian Nadia: We wake in her Moscow lounge/bedroom giggling whilst recounting stories of table dancing away the night before.

3. Russian Boris: After tracking me down at Nadia’s place, he leans out his SUV’s window proclaiming “Russian and Australian family reunite HA HA!”

4. Georgian Goram: The morning after attending an infamous Georgian Table of dangerous toasting marathons, war-troubled Goram slings his arm around my ruined husband in brotherly camaraderie.

5. Georgian saviour: After being scared witless by the treacherous road up to mystical Tusheti I feel the opposite coming down with the Georgian Off Road Champion.

6. Turkish Yilmez: After dinner in his Amasra apartment I feel touched when helping him understand an English love letter from his Russian internet girlfriend.

7. Afrikaans Melinda: We feel elated - she calls me her angel - as we escape a toxic situation together in rural Freestate.

8. Namibian Jacques: He convinces me to drive while he hangs out the window, yelling to the desert his joy in being alive.

9. Kyrgz hostess: She tucks me into bed under dense quilts in her isolated yurt in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan.

10. Serbian Maja: Four month pregnant, tears glisten as I read her email explaining a dream she had of when we would meet again; she is selling flowers in Zemun and I arrive holding the hand of a little girl.

This post has been entered into the Grantourismo HomeAway Holiday-Rentals travel blogging competition


  1. Thanks for entering our competition! This is such a beautiful post! Just letting you know winners will be announced today.

  2. Hi

    Congratulations on winning 2nd prize! We've tweeted you but heard nothing and can't locate your email address anywhere on here - can you email me at and I'll connect you to the sponsors to arrange to get your prizes?


  3. Nice list Suzanne. I like your approach of focusing on people you've met. Well done!

  4. These are beautiful memories! It sounds like you have had amazing adventures!