Louise Gillman-Wells

Louise Gillman-Wells

I'm Louise from Basingstoke in the UK. I went on the road in June 2019 and I'm LOVING it. My background is mainly in Biosciences and various aspects of tourism.

- What did you do before joining Dragoman?

Before Drago I was a waitress to fill a gap after working abroad in Borneo for sustainable development and Mozambique in marine conservation.

- Why did you become Dragoman crew?

I became crew because I needed to be challenged. I wanted to use the skills I have instead of waiting tables and learn new skills, and all of these needs are certainly being met. I forgot to mention the obvious, I also love to travel!

- What's your favourite destination?

I don't have one favourite! I try to see each country as its own entity and observe all of the things that make it different to others. However, if I was pushed I'd have to say Mongolia, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Ethiopia from my Drago trips and also Borneo from solo experience.

- What has been your favourite or most memorable occasion on the road?

My most memorable occasion has to be in Mongolia when we were driving into a valley to see a monastery in the afternoon and the heavens opened. We decided it wasn't safe to carry on and we needed to turn back so not to get stuck in the valley overnight. We spent the next 2 hours putting snow chains on the tyres, scraping the mud out of their tracks as Tallulah (the truck) crawled and slipped her way out of the valley again. We managed to get back to the tarmac by dark and had pizzas arranged at the emergency hotel at 10pm!

- What's the most essential item in your backpack?

Lots of pants! Also a mosquito net .... The suckers love me and if a bed doesn't have a net already then I'm still guaranteed a good sleep. Aaannnddd a smartphone with lots of internal storage for all the apps we use and pictures we take, that's essential for crew.

- What is your one piece of advice to future overlanders/passengers?

My advice is to come with an open mind to experience the country; take public transport, eat local food but most importantly for me is to speak to the local people. My favourite places are where I've got to know the locals the best. Interact with everyone and try to understand their perspective of you, good or bad. Make people laugh, let them make you laugh, let them frustrate you, because the people are truly what makes a country and its identity. That's what it's all about for me.