I'll talk to anyone. No, really - anyone.

Regardless of their native language, whether they want me to or not, I'll talk to them.

It's been suggested in the past by a number of people that I must be paid by the word, which is categorically not true. Anyway, if that was the case, some of the major car manufacturers I have worked for would be in serious financial trouble by now.

Oh, wait...

As a child, I'm pretty sure my chatty nature drove my parents crazy - I know my school teachers noticed early on that it was almost impossible to keep me quiet and it's got me into some trouble over the years.

Like the time I spotted a local advert for an old motorbike I was interested in buying; I called the number, spoke to the owner and arranged a viewing.

Upon my return, I couldn't help but excitedly share the news of my findings with my parents - who were absolutely furious. Understandably so, seeing as I was only was 11 years old and they promptly grounded me for a fortnight.

The day I casually offered a certain racing driver a lift in my cab, is another example. Well, sort of. The point being, if I'd kept my mouth shut more often, I'd probably save myself a lot of hassle.

Occasionally though, I've managed to talk my way out of some tricky situations. Not so long ago, an overzealous policeman pointed his loaded gun at me for some unknown reason during a random roadside check point in a fairly liberal Middle Eastern country.

Whatever his motive, I wasn't that impressed and I made it quite clear that I didn't appreciate him waving his pistol in my face.

After telling him that he would never have the balls to actually shoot me, because "that's not the sort of thing that happens over here"- he went silent, stared, then dropped his aim slightly.

I wound up my window and drove off. Win.

And another time when a drunk driver hit the vehicle that I was travelling in late at night, I discreetly called the police and then kept him talking. Turned out he'd also made a sneaky phone call himself - and three of his bruiser mates turned up out of nowhere.

The guy eventually tried to drive off once he realised how much trouble he was in - not before his mate threw a punch at me - and I spent the rest of the night at a police station showing the bemused coppers the iPhone video I'd shot of the whole thing.

(They got caught, by the way. Double win.)

Just a side note here: whilst I'm often the first to instigate conversations, I am able to be quiet for long enough to hear what the other person is saying.

I like listening to peoples' stories - who they are, what they think, where they come from. Which is why I've always enjoyed hosting guests at events around the world - I work with and meet some fascinating people.

A few years ago at an event, I hosted a group from Greece - some of whom didn't speak English. On the last day, one of the guests who had been almost silent throughout, very quietly asked me a question in English. I answered - a little surprised - and the conversation moved on to the usual 'who, what, where?'.

He casually told me that he worked as a masseuse in Greece - which would explain his zen-like silence, I guess. But when I enquired about how long this had been his career, I was not expecting the answer he gave me.

"For a few years. But I used to be a fighter pilot in the Greek Air Force."

I was stunned into silence (rare, believe me) and then proceeded to ask him dozens of questions, before he invited me to meet his Top Gun mates next time I was in Greece.

It's not every day you get offered a ride in a fighter jet whilst you're sat in a rain-soaked field in France, drinking mulled wine and watching rally cars buzz through the surrounding vineyards.

So I guess being a chatterbox has its advantages, after all.

And no, before you ask: I've never ever talked to myself. I've never been that lonely.

The voices in my head keep me company, I find.

LO