Sisterhood of the World Travel Bloggers

SisterhoodOne of the great things about blogging is making connections and friendships. Sometimes these friendships can transfer to the real world as opposed to the virtual one – I’ve written before about meeting Corinne and Jim from Reflections Enroute, and I was honoured that Corinne then chose to interview me for her blog and has now nominated me for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers. Well, when I say “now” I mean “a few months ago”. I apologise for the delay in taking it up, but you know how life intervenes sometimes!

The idea is to answer 10 questions, so here’s what Corinne asked me:

Did you do any traveling with your family when you were a child? We spent most summer holidays when I was a child travelling to Scotland to visit relatives, with the odd trip to the Lake District or the Yorkshire coast. My first trip abroad was a school exchange when I was 14 or 15 so that probably made the biggest impression. A German girl stayed with us at Easter and I went out to Gelsenkirchen for three weeks in the summer. She and her family were lovely, but I was too shy (along with most of the British schoolgirls) to practice my German. Their English was too perfect! We kept in touch for a few years, but I have no idea where my exchange partner is now. Susanne Klein, are you out there?

What was your first blog post? What is one of your favourite blog posts? Why is it a favourite? My first post on this blog didn’t say much more than “I’ve started a travel blog”. My first ever blog post said “I’ve started a children’s literature blog”. I’m not very original. My favourite is always the last one. I enjoy the sense of achievement as I click Publish and send it out into the world.

What’s the first thing you do when you get to a new destination? Or what is one thing you make sure you do in each destination? Walk about and explore! We love to get our bearings in the general area before tackling any of the main sights.

Is there a particular place that stands out in your experiences as exceptionally special or especially challenging? I don’t think we will ever top visiting Galapagos, and I never want to go back to Tibet. Both will appear on the blog someday – the problem is, they were a long time ago and, although I have good notes to help with the writing, the photos are all pre-digital. I just haven’t had time for a major scanning project yet – however, I’ve included one of each just to whet your appetite!

Blue footed booby
Blue footed booby, Galapagos 1999

Potala Palace
Potala Palace, Tibet 2000
Is food important to you when you travel?  What is your favourite experience regarding food?  What is the weirdest food you’ve tried? I don’t travel for the food – I’m a vegetarian, which can be a disadvantage when I have to put up with what I can get. The advantage is that I have a good excuse not to try the weirdest foods such as fried silkworms, frogs’ ovaries or goose intestines. John has tackled all of those – with gusto. My favourite experience has to be Lancrigg in the Lake District – it’s a totally vegetarian hotel and the only place I get to choose from the whole of the menu.

What has been the most effective tool that you have used to grow the readership of your blog? What’s your biggest challenge or frustration as a travel blogger, either travel or blogging related?  What is one frustration you experience when reading travel blogs? I don’t really look at my blog in that way – it’s always been my personal travel diary for logging my own memories. That said, I enjoy it much more since I started to interact. In the beginning I just wrote, and anyone other than family who read it was a bonus. Beginning with the A to Z Challenge last year I’ve really enjoyed meeting other bloggers online, chatting to them and exchanging experiences. Frustrations? Only really finding the time – there are so many great blogs out there I could spend all day reading them.

What do you find challenging about blogging?  Does it change the way your travel? See above – time! When I first started, I blogged on the go using the WordPress app. That soon became unsustainable, and I hate the app in its current incarnation anyway (for blogging – I still use it for handling comments). I wouldn’t say the way we travel has changed, but I’m much more likely to be thinking “how would that look on the blog?”

What are three characteristics that define you as a traveller? 1. Curious, or I’d stay at home. 2. Organised – I like to plan so that I see and do all the things on my list. 3. Energetic – there are usually a lot of things on that list!

What are some of your favourite travel blogs?  Why?  What makes a great travel blog in your opinion? Well, Reflections Enroute of course! It feels wrong to make choices, but I will mention two others, Jo of RestlessJo and Jude of Travel Words and The earth laughs in flowers. Why? Because they both run challenges which I enjoy and which have helped me to make new blogging friends – Jo with her Monday Walks and Jude with her Bench Series (though she’s changing to Gardens for 2016). A great travel blog, for me, is personal – I can find facts and figures myself, so I want an impression of a place through someone else’s eyes.

St George's, Bermuda
St George’s, Bermuda
What’s the top three destinations or experiences on ‘your wish list’?  And what’s next for you? I would love to visit both the Arctic and Antarctic but, given the time of year we would have to go, that will have to wait until John is no longer working in a university. Macchu Picchu has also been on our wish list for years – I’m not even sure what’s holding us back there. What’s next? We’ve recently been to Bermuda, so that will be the next thing coming up on the blog (taster above), we have a few days in the Scottish countryside between Christmas and New Year, and next year I’m hoping to add to my tally of states with another US road trip.

Next, I should make up my own list of questions and nominate 10 more bloggers but, as has now become my practice, I’m going to skip that bit and say that if anyone wishes to join in, please do so and answer the same questions as I have. Many thanks to Corinne for nominating me. I enjoyed taking part!


33 thoughts on “Sisterhood of the World Travel Bloggers

  1. Heyjude December 10, 2015 / 11:15

    Thank you for the shout-out! I am a lot like you. I also plan and have a list of things to do/see in a new place and usually have a whole new list when I come back! I also went to Germany on my first trip abroad as a 15 year old schoolgirl. And like you I love the relationships we form through blogging, I never expected that either, again like you, my blog(s) were created to log my travels and photos whilst I could remember them! I never realised you had travelled a lot in the USA, are those trips on your blog? I’d love to do at least one more road-trip to the US but my OH is not so keen. He’s happier to stay at home these days. And I can’t wait to hear about Bermuda… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 11:27

      Thanks, Jude. Yes, if you look in the categories index in the right hand margin you will see the states I have written about. Next summer, we are heading to Colorado. As for Bermuda – I have a Bermuda Benches post in prep just for you!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Pit December 10, 2015 / 14:29

    Hi Anabel,
    That’s something I like about blogging, too: enlarging your circle of friends. First you meet them in the blogosphere, and then in reality. Well, not all of the “virtual” ones, of course.
    As to your travels to the US: I see that Texas is still missing. If you ever make it over here, be sure to come by. There’s always a guest room in the house.
    Any ideas yet where you’ll be in Colorado next year? I’ve been there a few times so far. It’s a great state.
    Have a wonderful time,


    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 16:21

      Thanks Pit. My ambition is to visit every state eventually, so I might be looking for help on Texas in the future! So far, we have flights booked in and out of Denver but I haven’t worked out an itinerary yet. We want to visit Rocky Mountain, Grand Teton and Yellowstone so we’ll be into Wyoming and possibly Montana too. Another three for the tally!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Pit December 10, 2015 / 17:22

        One of our goals is to do (at least) 10 miles on a bicycle in each of the states. Maybe well meet on thevroad somewhere.
        When will you be in Denver? We have a cousin there.


        • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 17:50

          Maybe! We fly in August – not yet decided whether to spend time in Denver at the beginning or the end.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. corinnevail December 10, 2015 / 16:52

    Anabel! You make me laugh! I hope you do make it to Macchu Pichu. It is as beautiful as you’ve dreamed. I loved Peru, and Jim and I really need to get back to South America. Thanks for answering all my questions. I hope we get to meet up sometime again soon. Remember, it’s your turn to come here! Happy Blogging!


    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 17:00

      Ok, we’ll meet in Germany for a beer sometime! Glad the post met with approval, even if it was rather tardy.


  4. K H December 10, 2015 / 17:48

    Ive met quite a few of my fellow bloggers from my motorcycle blog Life’s Ride. I am very happy I did too. One of my favorite guys passed a couple years ago and he was a really great photo blogger and full of gadget information. I joined him and a few others for a lunch gathering and looking back on that day is a special memory indeed.


  5. Jessica (Diverting Journeys) December 10, 2015 / 19:19

    Ooh, I’d love to hear about Galapagos and Tibet some day! Actually, especially Tibet, because bad travel experiences are usually the funniest!


    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 19:23

      It was my first ever piece of travel writing, long before blogging. It amused family and friends so I hope it might amuse other bloggers – eventually.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. anotherday2paradise December 10, 2015 / 19:24

    I enjoyed reading about what makes you tick, Anabel. I would love to go to Galapagos, and I can highly recommend Machu Picchu. It’s definitely a bucket list destination. I’ve never felt the urge to visit Tibet, so I’ll be interested to read about your experiences there. It’s so great to have connected with you here on WordPress. 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 19:53

      Thank you, likewise. It’s a pleasure to discover so many kindred spirits in the blogosphere.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. lisadorenfest December 10, 2015 / 22:37

    Corinne asked great questions and I very much enjoyed your responses. My favorite post is always my last one I create as well. Galapagos is one of the tops on my list too, but none of my blue footed booby pictures turned out as lovely as yours. I hope you scan more images soon and write more about your time there. The Tibet photo looks very serene. Am interested to hear the backstory about why ‘never again’. And fried silkworms, frogs ovaries and goose intestines….yuck! Many sailors I know are also vegetarians and it can be a struggle for them when staying over longer terms in more remote places. I love Jo and Jude’s blogs too. And visits to the Arctic and Antarctic are on my list too (although The Captain is more of a tropical weather guy, so not sure when I will get there). Looking forward to your post on Bermuda. Glorious place


    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 23:02

      Thank you for the detailed comment. That was by far the best blue footed booby picture – maybe I should have held it back 😉 Ah well, everyone will have forgotten it by the time I get round to writing about it. Tibet was anything but serene! We loved Bermuda too. Maybe next week I’ll do something about that. I need to deliver now having said I will!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. cassam101 December 10, 2015 / 22:57

    Good questions and answers. That food you mentioned sounded awful. I’m not vegetarian but use it as an excuse if I am offered anything I’m not sure about. I’m not brave where food is concerned. Your American trip sounds amazing.


    • Anabel Marsh December 10, 2015 / 23:04

      Thanks Anne! Being vegetarian does have its uses.


  9. dormousetidings December 11, 2015 / 07:25

    Nice answers to the interview 🙂 I loved the photo of the blue footed booby! I sincerely hope you scan those images real soon and get cracking on telling us all about your trip to the Galapagos. Sounds like 2016 will be the year to share that trip!


    • Anabel Marsh December 11, 2015 / 07:40

      Thanks – I’ll have to put it top of the to-do list!


  10. Nadine Feldman (@Nadine_Feldman) December 12, 2015 / 15:32

    We’re both interested in going to the Galapagos. Also, it sounds a bit crazy since we’ve seen so many foreign countries, but there are many national parks in the U.S. we want to visit but never have (Yellowstone, Yosemite, etc.).

    It’s so much fun to meet bloggers in person! I’ve gone as far as Wales to meet one of my long-time online buddies (we were going to the U.K. anyway, and made a point to stop there). A few weeks ago I met another friend in New York. I hear so much criticism of the Internet and how it ruins personal contact, but my experience is very different. It’s really helped open up my world.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anabel Marsh December 12, 2015 / 15:47

      Yellowstone is on our list for next year! I totally agree about the internet and communication. It is what you make it – I feel I’ve made real friends, even if I will never meet most of them face to face.


  11. jazzfeathers December 13, 2015 / 19:52

    What a great post!

    You sound a lot like a friend of mine when you travel. Isabella likes to plan everything and be prepared to anything. It’s fun because I’m the exact contrary, so you can imagine how things end up being when we travel together. But we’ve been friends for over 20 years, I suppose we’ve learned to adjust to each other 😉

    Hey, the AtoZ had the same effect on me. It was a great experience. One I’m planning to repeat.


    • Anabel Marsh December 13, 2015 / 20:29

      Thanks! I have an idea for A to Z, but so much other stuff going on that I’m not sure if I’ll be able to do it. Will decide after Christmas.


  12. T Smithers December 13, 2015 / 20:59

    I am so, so happy to see this!!! Congratulations on your nomination, Anabel!!! I’m insanely jealous that you’ve been to the Galapagos! It’s one of the places on my, “Must Do Before I Kick the Proverbial Bucket” list. 🙂


  13. claudiabookwright December 14, 2015 / 21:35

    I’m so glad you’re coming to Colorado! Hope we can meet while you’re in Denver.This is beautiful country with lots of nice people. We have many, many miles of walking and biking trails and lots of sunshine.


    • Anabel Marsh December 14, 2015 / 21:51

      Oh, that would be great! Once Christmas is over I need to sit down and plan so I might be in touch for advice…


  14. inesephoto December 22, 2015 / 15:58

    Blue footed booby is one handsome little lad!


    • Anabel Marsh December 28, 2015 / 23:13

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you enjoyed Glasgow.


I'd love to hear what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s