The man behind the Captain America mask, Chris Evans, tells us about his travel wishlist
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OT: Your writing involves a lot of research as the books are set in very different places and time periods. How challenging is it to get the right information, and how has the internet transformed this?
Ashwin Sanghi: Thankfully books, articles and the internet have made it much easier to access information these days. But take my latest book, The Sialkot Saga. Books and articles were able to provide recorded accounts but I needed more. Things like movies, music, restaurants, celebrities and culture are usually never part of the historical narrative whiyle it is these very things that provide the flavour of that time. I was only able to fill those gaps with extensive interviews with people who had lived those years in those cities.
OT: What makes you travel more, research or book promotions?
Ashwin Sanghi: Book promotions. Typically I end up doing tours of Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune and Ahmedabad as a minimum after any new book is launched. Book research-related travel only happens when it’s a must. For example, when I was carrying out research for The Krishna Key, I visited Mathura, Somnath, Dwarka and Bet Dwarka. For The Rozabal Line, I spent a substantial number of weeks in Kashmir.
OT: What does travel mean to you?
Ashwin Sanghi: Given that most of my travel revolves around marketing my books, I relish the opportunity to meet my readers and fans during that time. If the trip is a personal one, then I look forward to using the time available to catch up with my reading and writing. A large chunk of my writing happens on flights and inside hotel rooms!
OT: What are your favourite holiday destinations?
Ashwin Sanghi: Darjeeling, Mahabaleshwar, Coorg… I love the hill stations of India. Outside of India, I absolutely adore the Lake District of England.
OT: Five must-carry things for you during your travels?
Ashwin Sanghi: Laptop, Kindle, whiskey, cigars and my travel pillow.
OT: What destinations remain on your bucket list?
Ashwin Sanghi: There are so many…Moscow, St Petersburg, Machu Picchu, Petra, Angkor Wat, Ladakh…too many places for a single lifetime.
OT: An aspect of travel that you wish you could change?
Ashwin Sanghi: There are a couple of things that bug me. If hotels want us to check-out at 12 noon then why do some of them insist on a 2pm check-in time? It’s unfair! The other thing that I detest is the dynamic pricing of airfares. Some fares are extortionist!
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