My Nomination for the Liebster Award!

My Nomination for the Liebster Award!

I have been nominated for my first ever Liebster Award by BackyardDestinations (@bydestinations):

Thank you for the nomination!

What does this mean?

The Liebster Award is basically an award that is by bloggers, for bloggers. It’s passed from person to person to encourage connection and support within our writing community, and to aid in the discovery of new and upcoming bloggers.

When nominated, you are asked to answer 11 questions and to share the answers in blog post. You then nominate 11 fellow bloggers who, for this particular award nomination, should have no more than 600 blog* followers (the number is set by the individual who nominated you), and ask them 11 questions of your own.

*I used Facebook page follower numbers instead of Twitter followers, as I believe it to be more representative of the number of readers a specific blog has.

To be precise, the rules are:
1. Mention/thank the blogger who nominated you.
2. Explain the rules.
3. Nominate 11 new bloggers with no more than X blog followers.
4. Answer the 11 questions presented.
5. Pose 11 questions of your own.
6. Post!
7. Notify bloggers that they have been nominated (usually via Twitter).

I nominate:

Elly Klein (@ellyklein)
Katie Lutz (@shoresskylines)
Eleanor Cobbe (@EleanorCobbe)
One Dusty Camel (@OneDustyCamel)
Ben Salt (@_bensalt)
Life, Love, & Adventure (@DawnKealing)
Global-Gallivanting (@ExplorerAnna)
Mags (@Magsonthemove)
Vagabond Impulse (@VagabondImpulse)
Laurels Living (@LaurelsLiving)
Frenchwithoutborders (@vicfasquel)

For this particular circuit, the nominations seem to be moving throughout the travel blogging community. Therefore, the majority of the questions are centered around traveling.

So let’s get down to business. First, to answer the questions posed to me…

1. What inspired you to start blogging?

I have always loved to write, and for many years people close to me that read my writing (both functional & recreational) had been telling me I should be considering it as some kind of career. As I started to examine my options after I decided earlier this year to depart the bar & restaurant industry once and for all, a friend of mine, who happens to be an extremely energetic entrepreneur, urged me to pursue freelance writing work. And he suggested I begin my creating my own blog. So I did!

2. Hotel or hostel?

I choose option C: Air BnB! OR option D: Stay with a friend!

3. What’s one place every traveler should visit and why?

I don’t believe that one single location, such as a city or landmark, exists that every traveler should visit. This is because that each individual traveler is moved by different types of experiences. What might touch one person deeply could have little influence on another. What might invoke an incredible sense of adventure for one person could be incredibly discomforting for another. But the one thing I will say is this: I believe that every true traveler needs to visit a different continent than their own. I believe that only by this kind of geographical and cultural exploration can we begin to grasp the awesome vastness of our world, and therefore begin to expand our minds as only those who travel have the opportunity to do.

4. How do you handle situations when travel itineraries don’t go as planned?

The two most vital qualities to have when handling unforeseen occurrences? Patience and laughter. Sometimes your course can change at a moment’s notice, and patience and laughter are vital to countering those undesirable emotions that would otherwise take over, namely panic and fear.

That being said, I don’t always manage to take my own advice….but when I do, I find the process of adapting to be exhilarating!

5. What is the most breathtaking sight you’ve seen internationally?

My international destination list is still too short for my own liking, but if we’re being completely honest here, I will choose from my travels a scene that some might find trite and unimaginative.

For me, being up on the hill near Sacré-Cœur in the neighborhood of Montmartre during my first evening in Paris and seeing the Eiffel Tower for the first time, all alight and dazzling in the distance, certainly stands out in my memory as my most breathtaking travel sight up until this point.

Before ever traveling abroad, France was the country I wanted to visit most, and Paris the city. For me, as for many people who are not natively born to France or Paris, the Eiffel Tower stood for everything French, everything Parisian. So although I know it has become an eyesore for many native Parisians, I personally found it to be an incredibly thrilling sight.

6. What’s the best food you’ve had abroad?

As a woman who feels her french blood running strongly through her veins, there is little I love more than french food. Granted, it’s not always grand or exquisite, but wandering any part of France, be it the urban streets of Paris or a little coastal village in Normandy, brings me endless culinary delight.

7. What invaluable experience(s) have you taken away from traveling?

The greatest development I have experienced as a result of travel is a growing adaptability when I find myself in situations that are unexpected or not of my choosing.

As I mentioned earlier, I have discovered such a thrill from being forced into adaptation when faced with something unexpected while traveling. There is something empowering in discovering that you have the ability to make it through just about anything okay, even with a smile on your face….it eventually extends into some of the risks and challenges, big and small, that are faced in everyday life.

Still, I sometimes find it considerably harder to put what I have learned while traveling into play when I am at home, comfortably ensconced in my routine. The longer I go without travel, the more I can find myself reverting to a routine and sometimes rigid state. It’s a reminder to myself to keep moving, to keep changing, and to make that sure I have a shaker (in the form of a road trip or plane ticket) planned for the near future.

8. Do you prefer air or ground transportation to get around?

It depends on the destination, and if the journey is part of the destination. I quite enjoy road trips, and can happily drive around with no company but my own if I’m interested in visiting parts of Americana. However, that being said, I have seen a great deal of my home country at this point and look now to focus more on international travel.

9. What is one thing you must always have with you while on the go?

Definitely my technology toys, which currently include my iPhone, tablet, and MacBook Air (all of which, most importantly, contain my library of music & entertainment).

And of course, a water bottle, a very important habit I learned while living in the desert.

10. Describe an interesting person you met while traveling.

The most interesting person I met during my travels was likely due to the fact that he was, far and above, the person I got to know the best out of all the people I’ve ever met traveling. He is the owner of an Irish pub called The Druid’s Cellar that is located in Bruges, Belgium, although he himself was born and raised in New Castle, England, and lived a good deal of his adult years in Ibiza , Spain.

I knew him so well because, for a short period, he was my fiancé, whom I met while traveling Europe for the first time in 2009. Although our relationship did not work out in the long run, he was an incredible person to know.

11. What is one place you could visit again and again?

I will have to break the rules here and list two.

One is close to my Chicago home and is a quick 3.5-4 hours to the north – Door County, Wisconsin. I have been visiting this destination almost every year since I was six, and every year when the autumn starts to roll in, my mind shifts to arranging a weekend getaway up there. My blog featured a travel article on visiting Door County.

The second is a place of majesty for me, somewhere that my soul instantly attached to the first time I stepped off an airplane and breathed the tropical air. That place is Hawaii – specifically, the island of Oahu. When I visit, I usually stay in Waikiki for convenience, but it’s the wild and haunting beauty lying outside of the big city that speaks to me. I am always sure to spend time away from Waikiki and Honolulu to venture to the inner parts of the island, the North Shore, and, my favorite, the Windward Coast.

Part of my love for Hawaii connects with my connection to the show Lost, which ran from 2004-2010 and was filmed primarily on Oahu. In early 2015 I will be releasing an eBook detailing a self-guided tour of Oahu for other fans of the show.

And now, for my questions to the nominees!

1. What place have to traveled to (or repeatedly travel to) that has the greatest impact on you, and why?
2. What is the most dangerous place you have ever been while traveling?
3. Rolling bag vs. Backpack?
4. What is/are your top tip(s) when flying extremely long-distances sans first class?
5. What is your ultimate goal for your blog?
6. What was the most interesting challenge you had to overcome or detour you encountered on a trip?
7. True digital nomad vs. Frequent traveler – which do you prefer to be and why?
8. What has been your greatest culinary delight while traveling?
9. What is your favorite unnecessary/luxury item to pack?
10. What destination have you found the greatest internal connection to?
11. Where do you call home and what do you enjoy most about being there?

Nominees, please tweet me when you’ve completed your answers. Enjoy! 🙂

Filed under: Travel

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