Aww, you win for taking the time out to guess.
1. I won a Dolly magazine cover girl competition when I was 16.
I never even entered a competition. When I was 12, I wrote in a schoolbook (that I still have) that I wanted to be a model, architect and actress. I can't quite remember if I was going to incorporate all three at the same time or do some kind of job share. Fast forward to 16 years of age and I was a horrible teenager: tall, lanky and awkward, and had started wearing nothing but black - which I embrace to this day. My interest in makeup then was to see how much of the black stuff I could slather on my eyes, lips and fingernails, and I believe my career aspiration at the time was to live in a squat in London, sleep all day, and go to clubs every night.
A sure candidate for the high achievers' club.
2. I had lunch and got pissed with Timothy Dalton.
Most of my time in Scotland was spent working as a live-in personal carer. Tim [she says casually] was a friend of the family I was working for. He and his wife used to come and stay at the house for a couple of weeks of refreshing Highland air away from the cameras and insanity of his other life. There were many lunches and drunken dinners, but the one I remember most is when the ‘lady of the house’ was away in Perth one day, which meant the lads and I hit the pub for some haggis. Writing that, I guess it sticks in my mind as it was probably the only time I was out in public with him and it was surreal to note other people’s reactions. We were in a sleepy village in the middle of nowhere and he would have been the last person the locals would have expected to see on their way to Boots to do their errands.
He’s very tall (nice) and terribly charming when he wants to be. He’s also very private and I respect that.
3. While working as a counsellor, I also volunteered at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre.
This one was the red herring, as the first half is true. Before I came to Japan, I was an employment counsellor and worked with people with mental health issues to help them find employment via a range of counselling interventions. The CEO promoted a psychotherapeutic approach, which works really well for a lot of people, but was not appropriate for our client base, time constraints or funding levels. The Clown with his shuffling inefficiency is a dream boss compared to my then boss, who was also one of my three clinical supervisors and had no communication skills at all.
Before I burnt out, I signed up at a local community house as a volunteer tutor to teach English to asylum seekers. I started the certificate training, but that was added, along with two different Graduate Diplomas and various other courses I started over the years, to the continuing pile of things I've started and haven’t finished.
4. I turn 29 in August.
My birthday is in July and I won't be turning 29.
5. I lived in Italy for twelve months.
I spent about six weeks travelling in Italy and loved everything about it: food, language, history, landscape, architecture, sights, smells - even the stench of Venice. The Italian sense of passion, excitement, and expressive body language is so appealing, which makes me wonder all the more why I live in Japan - in what I perceive to be such an up-tight and controlled society.
I hope to live in Rome one day and am following up on something now that might eventuate in a European transfer down the track.
But that's enough about me. Who's the most famous person you've met?