Sunday, October 11, 2009

Penpal of the Week #18

This time, meet our first Penpal of the Week from Australia: Caitlin!

1. Please tell us about you!

Hey everyone, officially I’m Caitlin but I prefer Cate, just never call me Catie.

I was born and raised in Adelaide, South Australia, a state in funnily enough Australia. Apparently someone wasn’t very original with their names or really liked their cardinal directions since we also have Western Australia and Adelaide’s CBD is bordered by North, South, East and West terraces.

I still live in the same house that I was born in, that was in 1990 by the way. I’m an only child so it’s just me and my parents, and our dog and two cats.

My parents and me at the airport just before I left for Argentina... why do we look so awkward?

I’m half way through a BA in Behavioural Science, so I’m majoring in psychology and also sociology. So if you’re interested in random psychological info or discussions about social life then I’m the penpal for you.

At the moment I’m looking for a new job but apparently it’s a bad time to be looking. Luckily I still have my old job at KFC (can you see why I want a new one?) even though they hardly give me any hours.

I used to study French and I’m hoping to take it up again at the start of next year because I would love to be fluent in another language. I’m also a writer, I’m not published or anything, at least not yet (that’s my dream).

When I’m not doing uni work or replying to penpals, then I can mostly be found writing or Tweeting ( for anyone wondering). Otherwise I’ll be reading, watching movies, cuddling with one of my pets or hanging out with my friends who I love to death.

Cooper, the dumbest dog alive and proof that we really don’t choose who or what we love.

2. Describe your personality in 10 words!

Only ten words huh? Then again ten words can be a lot.

How about we start with creative, I think that’s pretty self-explanatory since I like to write.

Introverted, I can talk a lot if I’m online but in real life then I can be fairly introverted and quiet.

My other bad trait is procrastination, it can take me hours to do something as simple as write an email or I can get it done in five minutes.

I’m loyal to people I care about but sometimes I seem distant to people I don’t care about or know. I think it’s because I’m always thinking, I have lots of deep thoughts, does that make me sort of philosophical?

I can be innocent and childlike in some ways, I love watching Disney movies and playing board games. Then other times I can be completely adult with the crudest sense of humour of anyone I know.

Me and my little cousin Elise, such a camera slut.

Wow, this is getting hard. I’m a realist but some people see it as pessimism.

Oh, I think my friends would all be surprised if I didn’t mention that I’m incredibly indecisive. One of my friends and I took almost an hour to decide where to go for lunch because there were so many cafes to pick from where we were :)

3. How long have you been penpalling? How did you first start? Tell us about your first penpal!

To be honest I only started penpalling this year. It was something I always wanted to do and I tried to find someone when I was younger but it didn’t really work out. I think my first penpal was just someone I found on LiveJournal. We’re still in touch though, I think, it’s been a while since I heard from her.

A couple of years ago at our school retreat, they painted out virtues on our faces... school is weird.

4. How many penpals do you have now and where are they from?

I guess between 10 and 15. I have a few who live in Australia, and a couple from England and the USA, also one from Canada. Plus there’s a few people that I’m only in touch with via email at the moment because of postage costs, so that’s a couple more people in Canada and the USA, also a girl from the Netherlands and another from France.

5. What are your favorite topics to discuss in letters?

I can’t say I’ll talk about anything because I’m not a huge politics person but I’ll talk about most things. It’s always good to know what’s going on in my penpal’s life. But I also like to know some of the deeper stuff like what they’re thinking about.

Books and movies are good to talk about too, TV shows, music, stuff like that. It’s good to try out some of the things that my penpals like but I’ve never heard of or never seen/heard/read. I like being introduced to new things.

I put a quote in all of my letters, here’s one of them.

6. What are you looking for in a penpal?

Someone who’s happy to talk about everything and doesn’t lie/keep secrets. I don’t expect people to open up straight away and tell me their entire life story but it would be nice to at some point trust each other enough to say those types of things.

7. What do you like the most about penpalling?

I like that I can be myself and not worry about being judged for what I like or don’t like and also what I’m feelin. Sometimes I find it easier to be completely honest in letters. It’s nice to know that there’s somebody who truly knows you somewhere in the world.

Sookie, my little baby. I saved her from the RSPCA.

8. In what language(s) do you correspond?

English. It’s the only language I can speak. Hopefully I’ll be able to do French and then write some basic stuff in French to people. That said, I’m pretty good at guessing the translation for French stuff.

9. What are some of your habits in regards to letter writing?

I love to write letters on my bed curled up with my cat Lester, so if you ever get pawprints on a letter then it’s his fault. I like to decorate a lot with stickers and things, and use coloured paper or pens to write them.

My cat Lester, he has really sharp claws and likes to cuddle and fall off of things.

If it’s during the uni term then sometimes I write outside at uni between lectures, there’s a nice lake at my uni.

I usually try to reply within a couple of days and I almost always handwrite letters, though on occasion if time is really short then I type, but I always make up for it in length on those occasions. If I’m really busy then it might take me a little longer to write back.

A sample of my handwriting (sorry it’s a little blurry).

10. Has anything strange/funny ever happened to you since you've been penpalling?

I guess the only weird thing is that I keep finding penpals who are twins. Seriously. At the moment there’s 3 of them. I didn’t think there were that many twins in the world.

11. Have you met any of your penpals?

No, I wish I had. But I haven’t had a chance to meet any yet. I really want to go and meet all of them one day but first off I need to save enough money to travel which is why I really need a new job! Maybe I’ll be able to meet the ones in Australia soon.

Me and one of my close friends the day we graduated high school.

12. Are you currently looking for more penpals?

Not particularly but if there’s anyone who really thinks we’d be perfect for each other then feel free to drop me an email ( Or you can just say hi on Interpals. Oh, if you’re from Ireland that would be pretty cool since I’m part Irish, or from Sweden or Germany.

Thank you, Cate!

I need more people who would like to be featured as Penpal of the Week on my blog, so please get in touch with me if you're interested! You can either email me directly (my email address is on my profile) or reply to this post with your email address and I'll contact you!

Julie xox


  1. Hi! If you ever get short of penpals to interview, I'd love to be featured ^_~

  2. Nice interview and really nice to read about someone from so far, I must say, the other side of the world. I liked very much Cate's interview, and her person.

  3. I'm up for an interview as well!

  4. Hi Cate

    I am Kamal Dahal from Adelaide, SA. I am come from Bhutan. I was a refugee before i come to Australia. I lived in refugee camp in Nepal for 17 years and now i am resettled in Australia. Well I am very happy to settle in this great country. I am married and we are 3 in the family.Well, I am really intereste to have friendship with you if you dont mind. Pls write me at if you are interested.

    Looking forward to hear from you.

    Kamal Dahal