I don’t always travel with a smile, but when I do it’s because I’m reading travelwiththesmile.com
HUGE thanks to Travel With A Smile for her nomination of Wend Away Travel for the Liebster Award (auto-correct wants to make it the Lobster Award, which I will also accept with gusto).
It’s got me clapping my hands like..
For non-blogger readers, the Liebster is an award created by bloggers for bloggers. It perpetuates the supportive community that exists among us folk writing online. I was nominated by Maya over at Travel With The Smile, who I give the highest of fives for loving my website and looking around.
Per award guidelines, in turn I shall:
- Thank the blogger who nominated me and link back to his/her blog (thanks Maya and Michale at Travel With The Smile!)
- Answer questions they asked me (with glee)
- Nominate other bloggers with less then 500 (or 1000 depending on the rules you read) followers (On. It.)
- Ask my nominees 11 questions (probs the same ones, because they’re good ones)
- Contact the bloggers and let them know about the nomination (For sure!)
So here they are, the scintilating answers to Maya’s questions.
- WHAT OR WHO INSPIRES YOU TO TRAVEL?
I only started traveling internationally about six years ago. It was a huge awakening. I realized it was my favorite way of learning and growing, so I decided to make it an integral part of my life. I travel whenever possible because I just love learning (pushes glasses up nose). But seriously, I like going to bed each day knowing I’ve absorbed something new, that I’ve viewed the world in a different way. It’s a good feeling and one that I continue to chase. Specifically, I like learning about artists around the globe who are doing their own thing. I find these people hugely inspiring.
- WHAT IS YOUR BEST TRAVEL EXPERIENCE SO FAR?
Nothing beats that first solo travel-venture. Mine was to Costa Rica when I was 20 years old. I spent the summer in Tamarindo learning Spanish, surfing, and salsa dancing until my shoes fell apart. Best. Summer. Ever.
- WHICH COUNTRY/PLACE DID YOU LIKE THE MOST?
When I was last working aboard a cruise ship, we stopped in Lisbon, Portugal. I’ve been dreaming of going back ever since. I fell in the love with the vibrancy and color of that city. It was brimming with creativity; from the food, to the street art, to the buskers. Every street was jaw-dropping beautiful.
- DO YOU HAVE ANY TRAVEL ESSENTIALS YOU CAN’T TRAVEL WITHOUT?
Like any sane person, I’ve named my suitcase: Swanson the Samsonite (kudos to those who get the reference). I take him with me on every venture that involves a checked bag. I’ve plastered him with stickers that each hold a special memory for me. It looks horribly tacky and I get a lot of stares, but I truly don’t care.
- WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU DO WHEN YOU ARRIVE IN A NEW COUNTRY?
Once I’ve checked in to wherever I’m staying and can finally relax (my anxiety is real), I head out in search of a drink. I’m never in the mood to tackle something huge on my first day somewhere new. Travel takes it out of me, no matter if its been a 12 hour journey or a 2 hour one. It’s exhausting! The airport, the lines, the crowds, the awkward lugging of suitcases through tiny turnstiles… I’m always mentally and physically fatigued and I need something to calm my nerves. A good local bar is a also a great place to meet new people too, which in turn might arrange your travel plans for you (Example: “Hey, we’re going to hear a band play later tonight. Want to come? Answer: YES!)… Also beer.
- WHO IS YOUR BEST TRAVEL BUDDY?
Almost all of my travel is done solo. Not necessarily by choice. Honestly, I’d love to have a friend along. But schedules never seem to align. Someone’s always “saving” for something, or they’ve got this thing called a “job.” So I’m left jetting off spontaneously by my lonesome, which I’m actually fine with. Often it allows me to meet up with friends in their respective cities, or catch a drink with them if we’re passing each other. I prefer these serendipitous meetups more anyway.
- WHERE WOULD YOU GO IF MONEY WASN’T AN ISSUE?
I’m eager to explore Scandinavia. The flights there with Norwegian Air are actually astonishingly cheap. But Scandinavia is notoriously expensive. Something tells me even their Airbnb’s would be pricey.
- IS THERE ANYTHING YOU DON’T LIKE ABOUT TRAVEL?
Sure! The lines, the crowds, the little kid that’s always kicking my seat on seemingly every flight I ever take. But in all seriousness, there’s a lot not to like about the traveler’s life. Particularly the struggle to find a sense of “home” while you’re constantly in motion… I put up with the downsides to travel because of the magical moments come along every once in awhile.
- HOW DID YOU CHOOSE THE NAME FOR YOUR BLOG?
Wend is an verb meaning “To go one’s way; To go in a specified direction, typically slowly or by an indirect route.” This is precisely how I like to travel, slowly and with opportunity for exploration off the original route. Wherever I am I like to just go for a walk and meander around. I find these walks tell me a more personal story about a place than most tours do. I often discover something beautiful and unique this way too, like amazing street art or an incredible busker. So “Wend” describes how I travel, but also my outlook on life in general. It reminds me to be open to opportunity and to not be afraid to go in a direction I haven’t considered.
- WHAT PART OF BLOGGING DO YOU LIKE THE MOST?
I love the storytelling. It’s what attracted me to the platform to begin with. Then I realized in order to be a good blogger you not only need to be a good writer, but you also need to be a good marketer, designer, analyst, photographer, coder, etc etc…I like that blogging has presented me with the challenge to expand my skills beyond what I thought I was capable of.
- WHAT PART OF BLOGGING DO YOU NOT LIKE?
The technical stuff. I’ve been teaching myself from the ground up and though I’ve come a long way, there’s a never ending list of coding jargon I need to teach myself. But knowing these things allows me to be creative in new ways, so it’s necessary.
My nominees, (if they so choose to accept)
- Juliane from Yaya Travels
- Bec from The Way Bec Sees It
- Lauren from A Typsy Gypsy Life
- Maddy and Mauricio from Travel Alphas
- Fellow performer Lauren from Dear-Wanderer
- Michelle from An American in Vienna
Nominees, answer the following questions and let me know when you do! I look forward to discovering new travelers through you.
- What or who inspires you to travel?
- What is your best travel experience so far?
- Which country/place did you like the most?
- Do you have any travel essentials that you absolutely have to travel with?
- What is the first thing you do when you arrive in a new country?
- Who is your best travel buddy?
- Where would you go if money wasn’t the issue?
- Is there anything you don’t like about traveling?
- How did you choose a name for your blog?
- What part of blogging do you like the most?
- What part of blogging you don’t like?
I’ve really enjoyed my Liebster Award duties. Thanks again Maya!