This past Sunday I had the distinct pleasure of hosting author Simon Winchester for the LitFest finale event in Edmonton. What a fascinating, well-travelled and thoughtful fellow! I’d like to think we hit it off and I certainly had a ball being on stage with him. In fact, we even ended up matching outfits inadvertently!
As Conde Naste journalist, Molly Elizalde, found out, he’s kind of the MacGiver of nonfiction writers!
Miles logged since 2014: 215,000
I always pack: A Leica M6 loaded with black-and-white film, a Silva compass, my Boy Scout can opener, a Moleskine notebook, and Wrigley’s gum—on a road trip through northwestern China, I used some to plug a gas leak and it actually held for five miles.
My favorite luggage is: A small red Globe-Trotter case—no wheels, always carried on.
My iPad is loaded with: Hundreds of research books, like Henry T. Brown’s 507 Mechanical Movements: Mechanisms & Devices.
On planes I’ll eat: Anything that’s put in front of me, but I love the Indian vegetarian meal on Cathay Pacific.
The app I use most on the road is: Tunein radio, so I can listen to the shipping forecast on BBC. It’s comforting to hear about storm-force winds battering ships in Finisterre as I fall asleep
Simon Winchester’s latest book, Pacific, is out this month (HarperCollins, $29)