(Shawn) Today I am excited to bring to you an interview with Gaía Passarelli. She is a former MTV VJ, editor at the Matador Network and an all around fascinating person. I’ll let her introduce herself.
I’m a 37 Brazilian, born and raised in São Paulo, where I live with my boyfriend, our two children, four cats and extensive record collection. Former music freak and founder of local website rraurl.com, former MTV VJ, currently so-called writer.
I update my personal blog every week at gaiapassarelli.com, talk about music (and cats!) online two times a week at http://youtube.com/gatogata77 and edit the Brazilian version of the Matador Network website at http://matadornetwork.com/br. Feel free to connect via Twitter and Instagram, Tumblr and Facebook.
1. How long have you been writing/blogging about travel and why did you start?
I’ve been writing about stuff, mainly music, for a more than a decade, but only started writing about places in 2012. It was not on purpose – traveling solo trough the UK I started to write long emails for my friends, they turned into blog posts and then into few articles for an online Brazilian magazine. It was almost an accident that I took a job as a translator for the Portuguese language version of Matador Network last year.
2. What was your first memorable travel experience/trip?
My grandfather used to take me and my sister on long road trips in Brasil – to the Mantiqueira mountains near São Paulo, the Minas Geraes state, the southern region, the countryside. But there was one time when he took us on a trip to the Amazon and we got to see the meeting of the waters, the forest, lots of animals. I was amazed.
3. Can you tell me what makes your blog unique?
I like to think that should be me – my filter, my subjects, my voice.
4. What is your absolute favorite place in the world and why?
I’m crazy about London. It’s very cultural, the food is amazing, Londoners are practical people and most of my literary/musical heroes come from England. You can take the train to the countryside and arrive at super gorgeous places, like Bath or Yorkshire. I love pubs, cider, mash and pie. Also, I really don’t mind the rains. If I’d to move there, I’d like to live in the Bethnal Green area, close to Victoria Park.
5. Can you share a useful travel tip with my readers? Something that you have learned through your own travel experiences.
Travel light. Always. Can’t stress this enough. There’s nothing as bad as to carry heavy luggage on the road. Also, read: about where you going, history, biographies, even fiction. Reading and traveling are widening experiences, they go really well together.
6. What inspires you?
Most writers should answer people, and that’s possibly the right answer, if there’s such thing as a right answer. But I’m going with location: the sky, the architecture, ways of transportation, smells, scenery. I love great outdoors, amplitude, being by myself.
7. What is your overall favorite travel experience and why?
The recent Kerala Blog Express experience is sure one of my favorite travel experiences so far. But the favorite ever should be a trip I took from London to Northern Scotland in 2012, by train.
On my first stop, in Liverpool, a cab driver told me, “The farther you go North, the nicer the people.” And he was right, but also the scenery is absolutely fantastic, dream-like. And I love the food. Just not a big fan of the cold weather. Too much for me.
8. Why do you continue to travel?
Well, the world is such a vast place.
9. Backpack or suitcase and why?
Not a radical, I use both, depending on the trip. But my favorite is a blue, small, super strong wheelie by North Face.
10. Do you have anything else to share with my readers?
Travel is everywhere. You don’t have to go to a super distant place on Earth to feel like a traveler. Explore your surroundings, get interested, the world is such an amazing place. Be part of it.
I sincerely want to thank Gaía Passarelli for taking the time to participate in our interview series. The goal of this series is to expose you the reader to different types of travel bloggers. So far I think we have succeeded and I have a ton of incredible bloggers lined up for the coming months.
In case you missed it, our first interview featured Ola Wysocka, a lifelong wanderer who most recently traveled around the U.S. with her family. Last week we heard from the amazing photographer Edin Chavez and this week Gaía Passarelli continued our streak of amazing bloggers. Next week Emanuele Siracusa will join us. He is a fantastic photographer who lives on the road with his wife and son!
If you have any feedback about this or any interview, please leave a comment! Thanks!