Fathom Questionnaire

Meet the Bookshop Owner: Natalie Compagno

by Natalie Compagno

Natalie in Iceland.

Hometown: Los Angeles.

Occupation: Owner of Traveler's Bookcase.

Favorite destinations: Paris, Zimbabwe, Iceland, New Orleans, Colombia, and anywhere I just came back from.

Dying to visit: Anywhere I haven't been.

Bizarre travel rituals: Complaining about packing and then complaining about packing while packing.

In-flight relaxation regime: I always take off my shoes and put on soft socks, massage pulse point oil on my temples, drink a glass of wine, and start on a great book.

Always in carry-on: Books, travel pillow, makeup, toothbrush, toothpaste, and a bikini (you never know when you'll get stranded on an island).

Concierge or DIY? DIY.

See it all or take it easy? See it all. Even though I say every time, "This time I will just chill," and then I have to see everything anyway.

Drive or be driven? Drive!

Travel hero: My grandpa. He traveled everywhere alone and never let anything stop him. He went to Antarctica twice, rode through the Khyber Pass, and collected coins from around the world.

Weirdest thing seen on travels: A man skateboarding with a cat around his neck in Portland. Literally getting air on the board and the cat just along for the ride.

My favorite hotel is Morgan's Rock in Nicaragua because I got engaged there.

I dream about my meal at Hector's in Antigua Guatemala, and the laksa in Maxwell Hawker Center, Singapore.

Best hotel amenity: Pillow spray at the Hyatt in Port of Spain, Trinidad, but if there is a bath tub at a hotel, there need to be bath salts provided.

Favorite childhood travel memory: Yosemite every year, and the first time I saw France.

Everywhere I go, I check out the bookstores and drugstores. I love buying random products in foreign languages.

When I arrive in a new place, I learn the lay of the land by doing a ton of research before I even arrive. Then I let it all go and somewhat follow my marked-up map and my instincts.

I always bring home booze, food, and a tacky souvenir.

If I never return to India, it'll be too soon because I was deathly ill there and don't remember a thing except how grateful I was to be out of that place. No offense to the lovely people I may have met and the food that put me in that position.

I travel for the joy and insight. And food. Mainly food.

MORE NATALIE

Website: www.travelersbookcase.com
Facebook: Traveler's Bookcase
Twitter: @travelersbooks
Instagram: @travelersbookcase
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