I’ve been nominated for the Liebster Award. This gives you the opportunity to learn a little more about me as I answer the questions I was provided in my nomination.

The Liebster Award is an online recognition given to new and upcoming bloggers to help motivate them and gain readers.  Participation is optional and you can politely turn down nominations should you chose.  If you do accept, you need to follow these simple rules:

  •     Thank the person who nominated you and post a link to their site on your blog.
  •     Display the award on your blog (as a post and/or in the sidebar)
  •     Answer the 10 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
  •     Nominate 5-10 other bloggers for the award and inform them via social media.
  •     Create your own set of questions for your nominees.

Thank you to Alison from Inspired Wanderess who nominated me for this award. Alison is a fellow Aussie living and working in some amazing remote parts of our country that most of us don’t ever get to. She loves Japan and all things Japanese…. but don’t let me tell you all about her! Head on over to her blog and check out her travels for yourself!

Now, here are the answers to the questions – and great questions they are too! – that Alison asked me.

How many stamps do you have on your passport?

Not enough! Seriously. I have only been to thirteen countries, so I still have an awful lot to tick off. We are also finding now that there are lots of places that don’t stamp our passport, or the use of e-gates doesn’t allow it. We can travel to New Zealand from Australia and there are no passport stamps given either way, and I’ve done that trip three times.

Passport stamps

Not enough stamps in my passport.

What was your worst flight experience?

I’ve been lucky enough not to have any really bad flights. There’s been some delays, but nothing we couldn’t easily accomodate. I’ve had screaming babies and kids kicking my seat. The neighbouring passenger has encroached on my space (usually it’s one of my kids!). I’ve had bad meals and drunk passengers. I’ve had family members with motion sickness. But none of these made any flight memorably bad. Lets hope it stays that way!

If you had the chance to visit a place for the first time all over again, where would it be and what would you do differently?

Bangkok, Thailand. We spent five days in Thailand in 2015. My daughters were 18 & 15, but both had come down with colds and spent most of the time miserable and grumpy. Whenever we went out they couldn’t cope with the heat. We went to the Grand Palace but it was not fun with complaining kids and we soon left. In the end we really didn’t do a lot apart from hang around the pool and visit shopping centres where there was air-conditioning. I would like to go back and actually see some of the city.

Grand Palace

Thailand Grand Palace

The pictures are awesome but the reality is not; what place has failed to live up to the expectations set by travel blogs/magazines/etc?

I am probably gong to get rotten fruit thrown at me for this answer, but Santorini, Greece. Don’t get me wrong, Santorini is as beautiful as the pictures, but I felt that was all there was to the place. It was just so touristy, and didn’t have the character of other Greek Islands. We were there in April, the shoulder season, and I thought it was busy, but when talking to a waiter at a restaurant he said it was nothing! That day there were only two cruise ships in, and in the middle of summer there can be as many as eleven! Now that would be insane.

Smart phone or camera?  Which do you prefer and why?

Right now, my camera because I have an old iPhone 5s. I will be upgrading in the next month or so, so maybe that will change.

Beach, country or city?

This is a hard one. I’m a country girl, living in the city, about 100m from the beach! I honestly don’t think I can choose just one. If I had to, it would be between country and beach, and I figure I could have them both at once quite easily!

What’s been the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?

I’m game to try most things that are put in front of me when we are travelling. I haven’t had the opportunity to try anything too weird yet – no bugs. I have eaten sea urchins, and the weird bits found in pho, like tripe and tendon. I’ve tried durian, twice, but it’s not for me. I have also eaten a lot of Australian foods, that are unusual even to us, but not weird. Kangaroo for example.

Pho

Vietnamese pho with tripe and tendons

Blogging isn’t easy, so what has been your biggest struggle?

My biggest struggle has been coming up with things to write about while I’m not travelling. I am sure once I hit the road in April I will have this never ending stream of things I want to tell people about. Until then, it’s a little harder. I wrote a post about some of the other struggles of blogging when I first started. Have a look at “How to be a Travel Blogger” for a giggle at my first few days.

Is there anything that you always pack for holidays and yet never seem to use?

I am a ruthless packer, continuously measuring up how much I need the item against whether I want to carry it – and I don’t want to carry much. I have a fear of running out of reading material. Combine this with me thinking I am going to spend time relaxing, which I never really do, and I always have an extra book or two I bring home with me. (Want to know what I do with them as I travel? Check out this post.) I could get a kindle, but I have shelves of books waiting to be read, and I like the feel of real books best. I also learnt on a flight once how they are better than a kindle. We had to wait about half an hour in line to take off. No electronic equipment was to be used. I read happily while Kindles lay idle.

Books

Books, books and more books!

Is the glass half empty, half full or twice as big as it needs to be?

I think the point to remember is that the glass is always refillable! In general though, I’m a glass half full kinda person.

And my Nominees for the Liebster Award are:

A Thousand Flights
Thrifty Family Travels
OurWorldinReview
Kiwiontheloose
Tequila Carmel
The Pink Backpack

My Ten Questions for the Nominees

  1. What is your favourite travel book?
  2. Who is your preferred travel partner? Or do you prefer to go it alone?
  3. What’s the number one thing on your bucket list right now?
  4. Which place does everyone else rave about but you weren’t so impressed?
  5. What is the first thing you do on arrival in a new country?
  6. What is one stand-out moment from your travels? It could be a favourite moment, something that went wrong, or something quirky that happened.
  7. Who would you like to sit next to on a flight and why?
  8. Do you speak a second language? If you don’t, would you like to? Which one?
  9. Is there a souvenir you collect on your travels?
  10. Where are you off to next?