I'm afraid I am pretty awful when it comes to languages, aside from being able to mutter very basic German. And even then, it's mostly bizarre nouns that we were taught in school for no reason, like abholzen ('deforest'). Useful. If I'm going somewhere new, I generally try and learn the important phrases but... this doesn't always work. In Korea, it took me a month to remember how to say hello and thank you, and I never mastered them in Polish, despite having them scrawled all over my hand the whole time. I am ashamed of my language-shame.
2. What country are you visiting next?
At the moment, it's looking like Kenya, USA, or Sudan, with Cyprus somewhere in there too. There are a couple of trips i'm trying to juggle over the next year and a half.
3. What is the first thing you pack (not counting your passport or underpants)?
Contact lenses (and glasses). And I always put them in my hand luggage because I am completely convinced that the plane is going to crash but I'll survive and make it to a desert island, and then be the first to die because I'll be basically blind - if my lenses are unreachable in my hold luggage. I've put a lot of thought into this.
4. Do you prefer to travel solo or with friends?
I love both, and want to keep doing both. Traveling solo is great for building your confidence in that it makes you realise you can do all this stuff by yourself, and you can literally do what you want, when you want. But it can get a little lonely, and it's great to have people there to share things with you too.
5. Do you prefer hostels or hotels?
Again, a bit of both. Hostels can be great fun, especially if you're traveling with friends, so you can be less worried about being attacked by strangers in the night (or just being shouted at a lot by an angry French man, which happened to us in Berlin.) But hotels can be more comfortable and give you a little bit more privacy. Pros and cons to both - there's a nice sitting-on-the-fence answer for you.
6. What is your best or favourite travel tip?
If you're going somewhere dangerous, or you're incredibly paranoid like me - put spare money/credit cards in your underwear. And remember to put them back in a sensible place before having to fetch them to actually pay for things. Extracting my credit card from my hot sweaty sock at a swanky Honduras hotel was one of my most embarrassing travel moments.
7. If you could live in any country and never leave, where would it be and why?
South Korea. The people are some of the friendliest I've ever met, the food is absolutely incredible, and a lot of the scenery is just stunning. Oh, and Seoul is one of the coolest cities I've ever been to. And that was before Gangnam Style came out.
8. How spontaneous are your trips?
Not massively. I like to plan. I like to over-plan. I want to have read a good chunk of the guidebook, done plenty of research and thought hard about what I need to pack before I go anywhere. I quite often have dreams about arriving at some far-off destination where I haven't packed AT ALL and it's the most scared I've ever been. Why didn't I take my contact lenses?!? Or any clothes?! That said, I will agree to trips spontaneously, sort of thing. I met up with a friend I hadn't seen or spoken to in over ten years once. After a few hours, he said "Do you want to go to Holland?", I said "Yeah ok", and we booked it in the next few days. SEE I CAN BE SPONTANEOUS. Ish.
9. If you could sit next to one person on a plane, who would it be (dead or alive)?
Mindy Kaling. I think she'd sleep most of the way, would only wake up to tell me amusing things, and she'd definitely have a bag full of snacks. Getting her to share them might be more difficult.
10. Name your top three favourite blogs!
Definitely Nomadic Matt, I like his regular updates and honesty. I think the bravery behind Innocent Nomad is absolutely great, she's done so much solo travel and it doesn't phase her at all. I'd like to be more like that. My other favourite is Roaming Coconuts - the girls behind this also seem really brave, and travel through places I've hardly heard of anyone else going to, namely 'the stans', including Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Very cool.
Now I've answered my questions, it's time to choose my own 'nominees' and create some questions for them. From what I gather, these are the 'rules' behind Liebster Award nominations:
- Thank the person who nominated you and link back up to his/her blog.
- Answer the 10/11 questions which are given to you by the nominator.
- Nominate other bloggers for the award who have less than 200 followers.
- Create 10 questions for your nominees to answer
- Let the nominees know that they have been nominated by going to their blog and notifying them.
And my nominees (some have 200+ followers, but that didn't seem to stop me or Emily from Innocent Nomad being nominated) are:
The Roaming Coconuts
From A Traveller's Desk
Girl Meets World
Naked Eye Travel
Taylor Hearts Travel
And here are your questions:
1. If you could speak any other language, would would it be and why?
2. What's your favourite travel experience so far?
3. What's your worst travel experience so far?
4. Where are you going next?
5. What's your best/favourite travel tip?
6. If you could pick one famous person (dead or alive) to travel with, who would it be and where would you go?
7. What do you never travel without?
8. Do you think guidebooks are a help or a hindrance?
9. Are there any countries you would never go to?
10. Name your top three favourite blogs
My fellow bloggers, I look forward to your answers :)