Insomniac x Oliver Reynolds, traveller
Oliver Reynolds is an exchange student from the chilly UK studying Geography here at NUS. He’s taken the ‘on exchange, must travel’ catchphrase of the exchangers to heart, having taken 25 flights since arriving in Singapore (at the last count) and travelled to almost every South East Asian country (including climbing a volcano, growing a beard in Thailand and visiting Burma). Claire Henderson catches up with him between trips to find out how he has managed to fit it all in.
1. Why did you choose Singapore for Study Abroad?
Mostly the cheapness of living (much more than US/Australia), the warm climate, the interesting culture and most importantly the geographic location with ease of access to travel to exotic places.
2. What got you started travelling around South East Asia?
Other students discussing the (seemingly endless) possibilities of where to go for just a weekend or a few days, as well as cheap flights with the budget airlines. And of course the quintessential Lonely Planet’s Southeast Asia on a Shoestring.
3. Use three words to describe yourself.
Let me think…
4. What is your favorite part of travelling?
Seeing the sites and natural features I’ve read about and often studied: it’s great to actually see them in real life. Also chilling with random people you meet, whether other travelers or the locals.
5. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully working abroad, maybe as a diplomat or at the UN. A bit ambitious maybe! Definitely something important, probably political and involving geography. Maybe in the Middle East…
6. How do you cope with balancing travel with university life and the workload?
As a full-year exchange student I don’t have too much work, but can do work on the plane, in hostels or in the jungle if necessary.
7. How has seeing South East Asia changed your life?
It has definitely taught me a lot. You genuinely learn a lot about the country and its people, as well as lots of basic nitty-gritty things nobody else tells you and you have to discover yourself. I have learnt some degree of patience through lots of nightmarish situations (loss of possessions and such), but it always turns out OK in the end. Want more!
8. Let’s play the traffic light game.
Green I suppose.On a lighter note, we managed to challenge Oliver to a quick-fire round.
- Angelina Jolie or Jennifer Aniston?
Aniston. Just for the acting of course!
- Taylor Swift or Selena Gomez?
Taylor Swift, but both bad.
- McDs or KFC or BK?
McD every time, especially when drunk.
- Mac or PC?
PC. Mac too hard to use.
- Tiger Beer, Heineken or Carlsberg?
- Singapore or Malaysia?
Singapore (but both excellent countries!)