Who we are

PocketCultures wouldn’t be half as interesting without our contributors and editors from all over the world. Meet them here.

Do you want to put your country on our map? Become a contributor – find out more here.


Carla Arena: Brazil
Carla Arena is a passionate Brazilian educator who loves to travel, enjoy life, and be with her family and friends. She was born in Brasília, but has seen the world through other cultural lenses when she lived in Key West, Florida, Mestre – Venice, Italy, and Ellensburgh, in the US.

Carla enjoys teaching, learning, taking photos, networking through social media, cooking, and playing tennis. She is thrilled to have the chance to share with you a bit of the Brazilian beats and culture here. Carla blogs at Collablogatorium.

PocketCultures posts by Carla.

Sandra Bettencourt: Portugal
Sandra Bettencourt holds a research fellowship in project CILM – City and (In)security in Literature and the Media at the  University of Lisbon. She holds a degree in Art Studies (specialization in Film Studies), as well as an MA in Literary and Cultural Studies. She obtained formation on Digital Journalism, at CENJOR (Center of Professional Formation for Journalism). She’s addicted to movies, passionate about literature, and a music lover.

Find Sandra on her website Sandra Bettencourt. Sandra’s photographer Miguel Von Driburg husband also collaborates on PocketCultures posts.

PocketCultures posts by Sandra.

Mitrajit Biswas: India (West Bengal)
Mitrajit Biswas is a young adult from India with interest in Sports, Travel & Media. He likes to write & share his thoughts through PocketCultures hopes to share his cultural thoughts and ideas along from his view point and perception.

PocketCultures posts by Mitrajit

Caterina Ciccone: Italy
Caterina is a 25 year old Italian girl from Tuscany, currently achieving her Master Degree in Modern Foreign Languages. During her Bachelor Degree in Rome, she spent a period in Manchester, UK, and suddenly decided to keep improving her knowledge of the English culture and language.

Caterina also studies Spanish and French, as she immensely enjoys reading books and watching movies in their original languages, as well as travelling. She would like to live and work abroad and, one day, to have a large family with many cats.

PocketCultures posts by Caterina

Carmen Cristal: Romania
Carmen was born and raised in Bucharest, the city where she currently lives. She worked in the Sales Department of a radio station for 15 years. Along with some friends, Carmen recently founded a small company that deals with website development and online promotion.

She loves English, listening to music, establishing connections and meeting new people and has a real passion for Ireland. Carmen is attracted by foreign cultures and she likes very much to travel (whenever it is possible!)

Carmen co-hosts the PocketCultures Facebook page and her blog is Bucharest Daily Colours

PocketCultures posts by Carmen.

Celia Emmelhainz: Kazakhstan
Celia Emmelhainz grew up in small-town America before becoming a librarian in northern Kazakhstan. She studied writing as a student, before moving on to anthropology (MA), and now library science (MLIS). She has enjoyed past visits to Croatia, Sweden, the Gambia, Kazakhstan, and Mongolia, and is currently learning Kazakh and Russian languages.  

Celia loves research and writing and takes the chance to meet new people in new places whenever she can! You can read her blog at the Dumpling Cart, view her art curation at Shapely Women, and follow her on twitter at @celiemme.

PocketCultures posts by Celia.

Marta Garcia: Spain
Marta Garcia grew up in Barcelona, Spain, and has also studied in Belgium and the UK. She works as a professional translator, translating English, French and Italian into Spanish and Catalan.

Marta adores languages, music, cinema, photography, kayaking and picnics. After translating films, documentaries and books by many different authors, she now hopes her writing will let others enjoy the rich culture of her own region through PocketCultures. You can also find Marta on her own blog English in Barna.

PocketCultures posts by Marta.

Rebecca Kinsella: Australia
After two years overseas discovering Irish family and foreign cultures, Rebecca has recently returned home to Melbourne. She was inspired to share Australian culture after getting exposure to how others live through her travels.

Find Rebecca on her personal blog The Distance to Here, where she writes about food and travel.

PocketCultures posts by Rebecca.

Marcel Krueger: Ireland / Germany
Marcel is a German expat living in Ireland and working for an online company with a colourfull logo. He loves doing stuff with words, and did not go to school to learn this. He likes Heavy Metal and trains and dislikes many other things. He is so old he still buys CD’s, but has not yet caught up with the idea of becoming an adult.

Besides this, he loves travelling, has worked as a promoter for metalbands and a radio-DJ for four years. And has also won the Irish Blog Awards with his fellow writers of the Dublin Community Blog this year. Marcel also blogs at King of Pain.

PocketCultures posts by Marcel.

Liz Ledden: Australia
Liz is a freelance writer, blogger and mum to two little girls based in Sydney, Australia. She has also lived in Vietnam, Cambodia and Canada, eloped in Paris and given birth in Bangkok. Her passions include food, travel and the written word. Liz blogs about food and travel on her blog Devoured.

PocketCultures posts by Liz

DeeBee (Diane Le Gat de la Guillermie): France
DeeBee is French Parisienne and lived in Asia for nearly 20 years before settling in the UK 3 years ago. She has an interest in everything and every culture and is an avid reader.

French linguistics is DeeBee’s “specialty” but she also has a passion for history as you will see from her posts. Above all, she loves her country of birth, France. Find DeeBee on her site Travel France Online.

PocketCultures posts by DeeBee.

Mike Lynch: Japan
Mike is a freelance photographer and writer who has been living in Okinawa, Japan for over 30 years.

Published in several magazines, his work appears regularly in Apogee Photo Magazine and Matador Travel Network (Ryukyu Mike). Find Mike at: www.mikesryukyugallery.com

PocketCultures posts by Mike.

Jason Malinowski: USA (West Coast)
jason-pc-head-shotJason Malinowski is an American with a family that loves to travel. His family has recently completed a volunteering stint in Cusco, Peru as well as a tour of nine Mediterranean countries. Jason is a retail business consultant and his wife is a mortgage broker. His kids are teenagers who have been to 24 countries.

Jason enjoys reading, history, Latin music, foreign movies, cooking and basketball. You can learn more about his family’s adventures at AlpacaSuitcase.

PocketCultures posts by Jason.

Simona Morachioli: People of the World / Italy
Simona is Italian, established in Germany since 2009 to fulfil her dream of experiencing living abroad and learn another (tough) language. She is trying to blend with her new host country, while keeping a foot beyond the Alps to stay in touch with her roots. She loves hanging out with her very international group of friends, planning her next trip and filling up her bookshelf.

PocketCultures posts by Simona

Bryan Ocampo: Philippines
Bryan Ocampo is a tour guide by profession. He was an office drone before but then chose to pursue his real passion—reaching out to others and telling them about his country as a Filipino Tour Guide.

He has found another way of doing this as a contributor to Pocket Cultures. You can also follow him in his blog Filipino tour guide. Bryan lives with his lovely wife of three years who has taught him how to love Bob Marley, coffee, and soon, dogs.

PocketCultures posts by Bryan.

Sean Oliver: USA (Midwest)
Sean Oliver is a project manager for Language & Culture Worldwide, a cross-cultural training and consulting firm. He grew up in Ohio, has travelled extensively and lived in Costa Rica and Chile. He moved to Chicago during the Summer of 2002 and now has no intentions of living anywhere else; Chicago is one of his favourite places on the planet.

Having studied anthropology, he is interested in American, European, and Carribbean/Latin American cultures and subcultures. Sean will be writing about American culture, and drawing attention to the vast differences between Americans across ethnicity, class, gender, generations, etc. You can find Sean on Twitter @SeanJamesOliver

PocketCultures posts by Sean.

Kelly Pohorelic: Canada
Kelly is a BC girl through and through, but never lasts at home very long before her feet start itching. She has travelled repeatedly to Australia, Europe, and Mexico (and the US, but that doesn’t really count). The goal is every continent, but in every place she goes, there is only more to see. 

She currently fills the days working too many hours with children, writing, and learning Spanish. Though, friends will always find her in a kitchen filled with new recipes from the countries she has visited. Kelly co-hosts the PocketCultures Facebook page and you can also find her on her blog Ramblings of a Lone Traveler.

PocketCultures posts by Kelly.

Nargiza Ryskulova: Kyrgyzstan
gizaNargiza is a journalism student at the American University of Central Asia in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. She has also studied in the USA as part of the Future Leaders Exchange programme. Nargiza has travelled to Europe and America and finds western lifestyle relevant to her, while enjoying and cherishing traditions. She believes that differences are what unite people from all over the world. She speaks Kyrgyz, Russian and English.

On PocketCultures Nargiza will be writing mainly about Kyrgyzstan – things that she loves about her country, things she enjoys and things that inspire her in her everyday life. Nargiza blogs in English at Panda Discovers and in Russian at Life as it is.

PocketCultures posts by Nargiza.

Anuradha Shankar: India (Mumbai)
Anuradha Shankar is from Mumbai, India.

She has a Masters degree in Physics but prefers to describe herself as a Housewife, Mother, Traveller, Bookworm and aspiring Freelance writer. Find Anu on her blog A Wandering Mind.

PocketCultures posts by Anu.

LeX Tan Yih Liang: Malaysia
A Malaysian University student who became world travel addicted after being in South Korea for some time. LeX the student traveller. He travels almost every week to Festivals, Cultural village, Concert, industry visit, hiking, beaches and many more.

As to share those experience, LeX paradise blog was established to share the latest events happening in South Korea as well as amazing travel experience.

PocketCultures posts by LeX.

Nuria Villalobos: Costa Rica
Nuria Villalobos is Costa Rican. She is currently professor of English as a Foreign Language at Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica, and is a former ISEP (International Student Exchange Program) student in the United States. Nuria graduated from Indiana State University with a Master’s degree in Linguistics/TESL. She also speaks Portuguese and is currently studying the Teaching of Spanish as a Second Language.

Nuria’s passions are languages, cultures and photography and she enjoys meeting people from different places. Find Nuria on her blog World Experience.

PocketCultures posts by Nuria.

Sinan Yüzakli: Turkey
Sinan Yuzakli was born and lives in Istanbul, Turkey. In the past he worked for Consumer Electronics focused magazines as Editor & Editor in Chief. Currently he is a Work at Home Dad of a 2009 born prankster, working on Audio Content Production projects, such as audio travel guides, as a consultant.

Sinan lived in London for a brief period and has also traveled to Western Europe, Republic of Korea and Indonesia. He studied German, Latin and Russian during his education. He enjoys photography, rock music, classic cars, epic movies, comedy TV shows and Franco/Belgian comics.

On PocketCultures Sinan will share examples of cultural diversity of his country. You can meet him on Twitter (@sinanyuzakli) and browse his posts on his personal blog. Sinan also co-hosts the PocketCultures Facebook page.

PocketCultures posts by Sinan.

Ski Yeo: Hong Kong / Singapore
Ski Yeo is a Singaporean who is currently living in Hong Kong, with a strong passion in both travelling and writing.

She promotes local travel, encouraging people to know a country for what it really is, beyond the usual tourist attractions.

You can read Ski’s Hong Kong Travel Guide at Big Foot Tour blog.

PocketCultures posts by Ski Yeo.


Ana Astri-O’Reilly: Contributing Editor, Argentina
Ana Astri-O’Reilly is from Argentina, where she lived until five years ago. She currently lives in Dallas, USA with her British husband, but they move a lot. Previously a translator and English and Spanish teacher, Ana first started writing to share her experiences and adventures with friends and family. She speaks Spanish, English and a smattering of Portuguese. If there’s something you want to know about Argentina, contact Ana and she will be happy to write about it.

Find Ana on her blog Ana Travels.

PocketCultures posts by Ana.

Carrie McKeegan: Contributing Editor, People of the World
Carrie is an American who has just moved from Bali to Mendoza, Argentina. Carrie caught the wanderlust bug early on from her parents, who raised her in Mexico City.

Carrie and her husband David have lived in New York, London, Barcelona, Costa Rica, Rio and a brief stint in Montevideo before moving over to Bali. They are actively working to pass on the travel bug to their young son Timmy, who has already been to six countries. Read about their experiences on their blog Laptops, Nappies and Paradise.

PocketCultures posts by Carrie.

Marie Szamborski: Contributing Editor, New Zealand
Marie lives in Auckland, New Zealand but was born in the United States and is a dual-national. She has lived in five countries altogether but sees New Zealand as her true home. She loves travel, and living in multi-cultural Auckland is the next best thing to being out there.

As a writer and teacher of English and literacy skills she has met many interesting people and is intrigued by the concept of identity. She explores the relationship between identity and food in her blog Five Flavours, and you can also find her on her other blog Shantiwallah. She would be happy to hear from anyone interested in New Zealand or who just wants to say Kia ora.

PocketCultures posts by Marie.


Marcello Boschetti
Marcello is an Italian designer who has been working in web design for more than 10 years. He spends his days in a constant quest to make the Internet more beautiful, useful, simple and accessible to everyone.

At the moment Marcello takes care of the technical and creative side of PocketCultures.com

Lucy (Liz) Chatburn
Lucy is English and first ventured out of the UK when she was 19. Since then she has tried to make up for it by seeing as much of the world as possible. She loves learning languages, learning about different cultures and hearing different points of view.

Lucy currently coordinates day to day running of PocketCultures.com as Managing Editor of PocketCultures and also tweets on behalf of @pocketcultures

Karim El Hamel
Karim is Libyan and Italian. He lives in Turkey and spends his days working in the automotive sector where he is part of a team whose goals are people development and innovation. While living in west Europe, north Africa and north America, he discovered that everywere in the world there is so much to learn and be excited about.

He is currently taking care of business development for PocketCultures and works to ensure that inspiring local stories free from stereotypes can be always shared in the future between people like you.

Previous Contributors

PocketCultures contributors who no longer publish regularly.

Napatra Charassuvichakanich (China); Kitty Alisara Chirapongse (Thailand); Sanjay Kumar (Delhi, India); Camden Luxford (Peru); Jenna Makowski (Poland); Arwa Lokhandwala (The Netherlands / India); Sandra Silva (Portugal); Elizabeth Watkin (Zambia)