Gill Shaddick left Britain aged twenty-one to take up a job in Hong Kong and kept on travelling. She met her husband in a township in Zambia where she was the only single girl and he the only single guy. Together they embarked on a peripatetic journey living in a dozen countries. They counted cotton bollworms in Egypt, Sudan and Iran, tagged eels in New Zealand, owned a fishing business on Lake Kariba in central Africa and ran a rabbit farm in one of Scotland’s remotest corners. Their four daughters, each a constant source of joy, amusement and awe, were all born in different countries.
In 2005, Gill travelled to Afghanistan as a volunteer and visited Kabul and the Panjshir. Journeys with each of her daughters took her to south-east Asia and then to India, Tibet and Nepal, where she worked as a Wwoofer on an organic farm. Solo journeys to Europe and Morocco and more recently across Central Asia from Shanghai to St Petersburg by train, keeps her wanderlust satisfied.
She is a distant cousin of Robert Louis Stevenson. His grand-father’s clock ticked out the hours as she grew up, which she credits as one reason why, from an early age, she was enchanted by travel and writing.
Gill settled in Sydney, where she now lives with her husband. She was one of the first to embrace Airbnb in Australia and loves armchair travel swapping travel stories with house guests.
Gill’s first book, The Hong Kong Letters will be published in early 2019. She is currently working on a new manuscript about her life after Hong Kong mainly set in Africa .