|K: Your work took you to China and Nigeria. Again, very different parts of the world. How long did you live there? Did you have any difficulties in adapting to the local life there?
M: I lived for three years in each of the two countries. Both were good bases to visit surrounding countries. To be honest I was quite sheltered when working, but when travelling around the country I got to know everyday people. I had different problems in the two countries. In China pollution and censorship annoyed me the most, in Nigeria the lack of infrastructure (e.g. electricity), terrorism, poverty and the ever present corruption.
K: Apart from your passport, plane ticket, toothbrush and the usual essentials, what do you always take with you when you travel?
M: I have a short rhyme (in Swedish) that I repeat to myself whenever I depart from somewhere: Passport, tickets, money and telephone, since that, in my view, is really all one needs to travel, everything else can be bought at the new location. On my first solo trip to China my airline lost my luggage, which never arrived, so managing a month with nothing but passport, money and tickets was how I first realized that there are a few “must-haves”.