Brian was born in England, but he didn’t like the weather so he immigrated to Melbourne in Australia when he was six. He brought his family along as well and moved into a lovely hacienda in the tropical paradise of Bonbeach. Okay, it was a normal suburban house in Melbourne’s suburban sprawl, but to a family of sickly white Poms, the quiet bay beach was heaven and every free day was spent frying in the sun like all good Poms do.
Not long after finishing an advertising course at University, Brian took the first of many trips overseas, hitch-hiking 10,000 kilometres around Europe. He then spent two years working as an art director for a London advertising agency before the cold mornings finally sent him scurrying home to warmer climes. The travel bug soon bit again and two years later he was off back to Europe to work as a tour leader for Top Deck, an 18 to 35 tour company where he escorted busloads of drunk Aussies and Kiwis from Paris to St. Petersburg to Budapest and beyond. In the winter months he worked (well, if you want to call it work) as a ski guide in Switzerland, where he got paid to get up every morning and go skiing. Before his liver collapsed from all the partying he returned home three years later to his advertising career. In 2003 Brian left full-time employment to become a very poor full-time author. When Brian isn't galivanting around the world he calls Melbourne, Australia home. So far he has visited 77 countries (78 if you count Tasmania).
Travel, karaoke, eating lobster, writing, sampling beer from around the world, reading, playing guitar, skiing, mountain biking, movies with Audrey Tautou (that's movies with Audrey in them, not going to the movies with Audrey - although that would be nice), oysters, wearing hats, chocolate, Buffy, hiking, cooking my award winning risotto, curling, Elvis Presley, parties, festivals, a good curry, Manchester United, sleeping, Pina Coladas, getting caught in the rain, champagne and making love in the dunes of the Cape.
Paul Theroux, Bill Bryson, PJ O'Rourke, Colin Thubron, Tony Hawks, Stanley Stewart, Dave Gorman, Danny Wallace, Michael Palin, Peter Moore, CS Lewis and the talented and very witty Brian Thacker.
Everything except death metal, industrial techno, Crazy Frog and Neil Young.
Sound of Music, Planet of the Apes (‘you cut up his brains you bloody baboon’), Roman Holiday, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and Position Impossible II.
Favourite TV shows
Pilot Guides, The Amazing Race, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 1), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 2), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 3), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 4), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 5), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 6), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 7)
German beer, Czech beer, Belgian beer, Mexican beer, Danish beer, Tasmanian beer, Kyrgyz beer (…okay, I like beer), white wine and fresh fruit juice
Australia (sunshine, beaches, fresh seafood and Cherry Ripes)
Italy (art, history, architecture, food, wine, gelati and Italian women)
Vietnam (the people, food, landscape and very cheap beer)
Switzerland (mountains, chocolate, fondue, skiing and chocolate)
Kyrgyzstan (Switzerland but cheaper and world famous jam)
Paris (art, architecture, food, wine, baguettes and Audrey Tautou)
New York (what hasn’t it got?)
Reykjavik (THE party town)
Rio (Samba clubs, the beach and the girls from Ipanema)
Favourite Galleries and Museums
Musée d’Orsay (Paris)
The Hermitage (St Petersburg)
MOMA (New York)
The British Museum (London)
Peggy Guggenheim (Venice)
Salvador Dali Museum (Figueres, Spain)
Graceland (Memphis, thang you very much)
Emirates (fantastic service, food and staff – oh, and they often upgrade me to Business Class!)
Least Favourite Airline
British Airways (lost my bags for 10 days, long international flights with no food and, oh, they’ve never given me an upgrade)
People I’d like to meet
Sarah Michelle Gellar, Audrey Tautou, Elvis Presley, Ryan Giggs and Jesus Christ