The Sextortion and Shortland Street star Natalie Medlock loves home as much as going away
What do you miss most about travel right now?
Sun but mostly family. I'm British-born and nearly all of my family are in the UK and I often get to go over in summer and visit them. I especially miss my sister Katy who is in London.
What are your strongest memories from the first overseas trip you ever took?
We would go camping in France when we were kids. Just hop on the ferry from Devon. Dad was ex-SAS and he would make us walk up very big mountains at a march.
What was a standard family holiday like when growing up?
Camping in the most remote place possible. Getting bored and making up games with my sister. One involved me tying her to a hammock and then turning her upside down to see if she'd stay in. Then I'd leave her there because I'm awful. I don't know why she kept letting me do it.
Who has most inspired your travels?
My sister Katy. She has been all over the place. Just hearing about her travels makes me tired. So she gives me inspiration as to where I might want to go but simultaneously makes me glad I can sit on the couch and watch travel shows.
What is the greatest trip you've ever been on?
My parents, my sister and I did a safari in Botswana. I must have been about 20. It was incredible. Someone would point out a giraffe and seriously, you'd be like 'where? I no see no giraffe'. Then you'd keep looking and all of a sudden, you'd realise there were 10.
I also remember, my dad and I were fishing in the Okavango Delta. A small tin boat drove us through the water ways – which were ploughed by hippos. The boat driver knew how to evade the hippo death stare. The hippo would eye us up in the narrow waterway, then they'd dive so they could run on the riverbed and charge the boat. At the last minute the boat driver would swerve around it.
And the worst?
We went on a cruise for my grandfather's 80th around the Med. There wasn't even space in the pool to stretch out your arms. Being an anxious person, especially around crowds, I spent the six days just quietly drunk, surviving.
What's your approach to packing for an overseas trip?
Get [my partner] Robbie Magasiva to do it.
What is the destination that most surprised you – good or bad?
I was most surprised by the slums in Mumbai. The cost of owning one of those slum houses there is astronomic. A student showed us around, they lived there and were studying business. They were so proud of their homes. And I could see why. Each area focused on a different enterprise: Recycling plastics (some poor dude from the country had to sort through a massive pile of every colour of bottle top), pottery, smelting aluminium etc.
Where was your most memorable sunrise/sunset?
I climbed Adam's Peak in Sri Lanka on New Year's Eve. We watched the sunrise up there before the descent. Sunrise was memorable. But more memorable was my bowels failing me abysmally and having to go in the most horrific toilet you can ever imagine. It was horrific before I went in and then when I came out I was just mortified, apologising profusely to the Sri Lankans. Worse still, Robbie kept saying 'well done babe'. I was like, "I don't get a well done [for that]!"
What's the first thing you do when you get home from a long trip?
Take a sleeping pill.
What do you miss most about home when you travel?
Green smoothies. I always get constipated. Then I take laxatives, usually too many, and that's usually the reason for the lack of bowel control. Oh, and my dogs.
Where is the one destination you must see in your lifetime?
I'm an advanced diver. I want to find some coral that is actually alive. Not bleached and dead like everything always seems to be, even when they come with recommendations. So I guess my hope is Great Barrier Reef. If anyone knows better, please find me on Facebook and message.
What's your favourite thing about travel?
Usually coming home. Sorry. I'm a bit of a depressive homebody.
Natalie Medlock stars in Tom Sainsbury's new political comedy Sextortion, streaming now on TVNZ Ondemand