I was honored to be selected by Donna Janke of Destinations, Detours and Dreams for a Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award. Donna lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba and it has been a pleasure getting to know her in the blogosphere. So many of the aspects of her life are close to our Minnesota roots, including the fact that she likes to go where it’s warm when winter looms!
The Sisterhood of the World Bloggers honor comes with a set of rules: answer 10 questions asked by the person who awarded you the honor, and then award 10 other bloggers with 10 questions of your own. Fun, right?
Here are the questions Donna asked and my answers:
Why did you start blogging?
Well, the short answer is I had a lot to say. Way back in 2008, blogging was rather new. Nobody I knew was doing it, but we decided to give it a go along with some lifestyle goals we had made which included online work. We envisioned the blog would be the hub for whatever business ventures we attempted. It evolved into a diary of sorts as we incorporated more travel into our life. Eventually, we knew it wanted to be primarily about travel, particularly after we became full-time travelers.
How did you select the name for your blog?
We had a big laundry list of potential names on a yellow legal pad. Pete actually came up with the name along with most of the others we considered. Then it was a question of seeing whether the domain was taken for our favorites. PassingThru was the winner. After seven years, I can’t imagine it being anything else.
How do you like to travel? Alone, in a group, fast-paced, laid-back, luxury, budget, structured, unplanned,. . .
The better question might be is there any way you don’t like to travel? 🙂 I’m pretty adaptable, although the older I get the more I prefer my creature comforts. So ultra-budget is a bit disappointing to me in terms of amenities. After all, how are you going to keep a girl “down on the farm after she’s seen Par-ee?”
What has been your most unusual travel experience?
Overall, for us the most unusual was our trip to Russia for the Winter Olympics. We didn’t know anyone who’d been to Sochi, there was a lot of controversy with the location including fearful reactions from friends and loved ones, the visa process was a bit daunting, and so forth. And then we arrived and had a wonderful time. We’d love to return and see more of Russia. It was an amazing experience and the people were fantastic.
What is the weirdest food you’ve eaten?
Fresh sea urchins straight from the reef in Fiji, flavored in salt water. You find one, knock the shell open, and scrape them out with a spoon or a stick. People have been doing it for thousands of years.
What do you do to plan and prepare for a trip?
We’re on a perpetual trip right now as full-time travelers, so it’s more about changing locations than taking a trip per se. We’ll investigate options for accommodation, figure out if we can get there by land (we love train travel) or whether we have to fly, make sure our dates line up, and then we’re pretty much set. We do a bit of research before we get there, but we don’t like to over-plan, so we’ll select an activity or two and then hopefully have lots of free time in which to wander about. We’re getting a little more casual about how far out we plan the specifics. For now, we know we’ll be somewhere for a week, or a month or two and then after that, things can be pretty loose.
How has blogging changed your travel experience?
A lot of our travel experience is now subject to the affliction I call “blogger’s eye.” You’re constantly assessing the value of what you’re doing in terms of creating content later. My iPhone is always out, taking photos or videos. Yes, I’m the person who has to get the food on her camera before anyone can take a bite. While it’s nice to step away from that mindset every once in a while, we find ourselves in such fascinating places and situations that it’s difficult not to want to slot them into a potential piece.
Where will you go next?
We’re in Germany right now, and we’re running out of Schengen time, so we’re heading to Croatia and the Balkans for a couple of weeks. This will be a faster route than we usually take. We need to be in Istanbul to catch a flight to Fiji, so we’re making our way by land through Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo and Bulgaria before we finally get to Turkey. I’ve long wanted to visit these countries so I’m very much looking forward to it.
What is your favorite thing about blogging?
I think it’s the opportunity to engage in a creative exercise within a community of like-minded people. Blogging has introduced us to so many talented individuals and provided us with so many awesome opportunities that we can’t begin to be sufficiently thankful. I also enjoy the feedback we get from our readers. It really makes my day when someone appreciates what we’ve shared.
What is the most important thing travel has taught you?
I’ve learned that differences in people aren’t as great as we may have been led to believe by our governments and the global media. Basically, most people want the same things out of life: to be safe and warm, to have the opportunity to create a better life for their children, and to feel a sense of connection. We’re all human beings, and if the planet is to survive, we must learn to trust and value each other.
Paula of Contented Traveller
Michelle of The Restless Voyager
Leigh at Hikebiketravel
Lois at Midlife at the Oasis
Rachel at Rachel’s Ruminations
Shobha at Just Go Places
Maria Michelle at Wandering Searching
Cheryl at What Boundaries?
Nic at Roaming Renegades
Christina at GO Epicurista
What are the reasons you began blogging?
Have you always had the same blogging niche?
How did you acquire the love of travel?
What is/are your favorite place(s) you’ve been to so far?
What bucket list destination is your pie-in-the-sky, it’ll-be-so-worth-it place?
What’s the item you’d miss the most if your carry-on went missing?
Big-girl camera or smartphone? Why?
What languages do you speak and how has this helped or hindered you in your travels?
Are you comfortable traveling solo, or do you prefer a companion or group?
What’s the strangest item you’ve ever purchased on the road?