Outstanding Blogger Award

A huge shout out to The Travel Architect for nominating me for the Outstanding Blogger Award! As she so eloquently put, I too am also suffering from CS3NiT2TWS, also known as Chronic Stage 3 Noninflammatory Type 2 Travel Withdrawal Syndrome (credit for that goes to the Travel Architect’s delightful humor and witty verbiage). Although, I think I have elevated to Stage 4 at this point. I haven’t left the country in OVER A YEAR, and that is very detrimental to my mental health and wellbeing! Dammit Earth, reopen already! My savings account is getting confused as to why it’s getting so bloated.

Award Rules:

  • Provide a link to the creator’s original award post
  • Answer the questions provided
  • Create 7 unique questions
  • Nominate up to 10 bloggers and ensure that they are aware of their nominations

Questions posed to me, and my answers to them:

Everything bad has a silver lining.  Can you think of anything good—both related to travel and for you personally—that has come out of the pandemic?

I suppose I already addressed this somewhat with my post Plague + Riots +Death +Karma = 2020. We got to do a little traveling last year… Jamaica (right before COVID closed Earth), St. Croix, Colorado, Utah and Arizona. On that same note, we canceled, Slovenia, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand. SE Asia has been canceled a total of FOUR times now. Dammit, I’m supposed to be focusing on the positives! Okay, positives………………… Gotta be something else besides that little bit of traveling………………… C’mon brain, you can do this…………………….

I’m waving the white flag. 2020 was not a good year. My own injuries and the Hubs, canceling life, the death of a close friend due to COVID, the inability to spend time with elderly family… I’m truly at a loss, outside of the three weeks we spent traveling in our own hemisphere, it was a year I never want to repeat. However, I’m turning over a new leaf for 2021. The Hubs and I are scheduled to fly to the Balkans in less than a month for a 3 week road trip; my parents, my 96 year old grandmom, and I are fully inoculated to the Beer Flu, so visits should be possible this year; and Earth seems to be reopening slowly. Don’t disappoint me 2021! We all need this!

You are being given three weeks off to take over the course of one summer. You can only travel within your country of residence. Do you take three separate one-week vacations, or one three-week vacation?

Hubs and I typically opt for the longer excursions, and fitting a lot into those precious weeks off out exploring all Earth has to offer. In fact, because of COVID, I already have two additional trips planned just waiting to be executed that include several National Parks each! Back in November 2020, one of the times we were supposed to be in Asia, we started looking at domestic hiking trips to make up for our sheer lack of vacations that year. Winter put the kibosh on Glacier National Park and Yellowstone, wildfires put a quick roadblock in front of Yosemite, Sequoia and Kings Canyon, more fires halted Rocky Mountain in Colorado, so we finally landed on San Juan National Forest, Arches National Park in Utah, and some delightful desert hiking near Tucson, Arizona.

If suddenly and magically your job became something you could do wholly online, would you sell up, become a digital nomad, and travel the world 24/7/365?  Why or why not?

Since my job is most assuredly something that will never be able to be done solely online, this is a hard one for me to imagine. However, retirement is not just this far off concept that feels unattainable anytime soon. Instead, I will likely be retired from my profession in just over 7 short years (I’m old enough to realize 7 years really isn’t all that long, and come now… the entire world just lost an entire year that passed in the blink of an eye, so we all should have learned that lesson… sorry, tangent there). The Hubs and I already have a plan for post-work life. We have very few ties to the area we currently reside in, both of us are less than thrilled with cold weather and snow storms, and after years of vitamin D deficiency working during the dark hours of the night, we are intending to relocate to the US Virgin Islands. Sun, sand, and warmth for the win! We will use the tropical island as a home base to continue traveling the globe.

Do you have any of those bucket list goals that fall along these lines: all 50 states, all 7 continents, every national park, every country on a given continent, etc.?

All 50 States and 7 continents for sure, but let’s be honest here, all of the above are certainly in the cards too! I have already knocked off 5 of the 7 continents and 36 of the 50 States thus far. Plus, I have my insanely long Bucket List that not only includes states, continents, and a multitude of experiences. Hell, the little bastard has it’s own page on my site! I love taking part in off-the-wall things and unusual ventures. In fact, there is a good likelihood I will knock Antarctica off the list November 2021… given Argentina allows us to transit through their beautiful country in order to board a ship to get there.

Aside from blogging and as much travel as you can manage, what is something about you or your lifestyle that sets you apart from your friends, family, and colleagues?

Handstands! Since traveling and fitness are huge parts of my life, I have made it a goal to stand in an inverted manner in as many peculiar, majestic, alarming, and pulchritudinous locales as possible. If I’m traveling and haven’t posted a photo of an upside down me, I get bitchy remarks in the comments demanding I post one pronto. It became such a thing, that the snapshots have their very own page on my blog, Just [Hand] Standing Around. Since hijacking the idea, the upturned versions of me have been executed in some dangerous places (on a cliff edge at the Cliffs of Moher 700ft above the ocean’s surface), some have gotten me criticized (apparently, handstands in Machu Picchu ruins are strictly forbidden and doing one gets you yelled at in Spanish), and lots next to well known places (alongside the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, in the middle of bustling Grand Central Station, and next to Blarney Castle).

Have you ever hosted an exchange student?  Tell about it.  If not, would you like to?  From where?

I cannot say I have ever hosted an exchange student, nor have I ever thought of hosting an exchange student. Now that your question is making me think of it, I am not sure I ever could or would. I suppose I will delve further… the Hubs and I are kidless cops with a pit bull for a child. I’m probably approaching the age that my “clock” should be ticking, but my uterus has zero desire to house a parasite for 9 long months while I get fatter and fatter and fatter. Hubs and I are both honest enough with ourselves to admit that we are far too selfish to parent offspring. We substantially prioritize sleep, a tidy home, travel, spending our earnings on ourselves, and free time, and well, let’s be honest… babies keep you up all night, so goodbye sleep. Toddlers destroy everything, so goodbye tidy home with an assortment of nice things acquired while traveling the world. Children make the type of travels we enjoy rather challenging, so goodbye travel. Those little fuckers are EXPENSIVE, so goodbye money, and travels. We love the ability to to sit on the couch (like we are now) and do nothing, so goodbye free time, and hello soccer games and play dates. Many call me a horrible human, but most claim I will “change my mind.” Sorry kids, this chick is not getting impregnated and popping out mini-me’s. Just read my About Me! It’s also unequivocally stated there.

Alternatively, are exchange DOGS possible? That I would absolutely do! But then again, I may dognap them and never give the puppy back.

When booking travel accommodations, are there any must-have amenities or special features you seek out?

As is with most things, it depends. If I’m visiting a gorgeous tropical island where the main objective is to relax, take in some MUCH NEEDED Vitamin D, enjoy delicious food and drink, and do a whole lotta nothing, then I want a joint with a gym. Like I mentioned before, I’m a weirdly self-motivated fitness addict, and while I’m spending an unknown amount of time relaxing my ass off, I need to also spend 30-60 minutes staying in shape each day. Yes, I’m that person. On hiking retreats, I like staying somewhere somewhat secluded, where I can cook up my own scrumptious food with a full kitchen. Lesson learned from traveling with G Adventures to hike the Inca Trail, waterproof tents are a must for camping expeditions.

Answering the questions was far less challenging than coming up with my own, but I succeeded.

  1. What single item could you never leave behind on an excursion?
  2. If you had to live on a secluded desert island with one other person, who would it be and why?
  3. If you could have a superpower, what would it be and why?
  4. What aspirations do you have for 2021, and an end to COVID?
  5. How did you choose the name for your blog, and is there any special meaning behind it?
  6. What’s your preference, planning your own trip or using a tour company to take care of the itinerary for you?
  7. What are your favorite travel apps?

My Nominations:

Should you wish to participate in this little endeavor, delightful. If you don’t feel the impulse to do so, how dare you ignore the questions I slaved away on! Just kidding… if you don’t feel the need, I will go on with my life like a normal, stable person. And perhaps I will finally finish my posts for Arches National Park and Arizona.

5 thoughts on “Outstanding Blogger Award

  1. Thank you so much for the compliments, though you are also describing yourself. I love your answers to the questions and I just love your honesty. Your writing has great voice – it’s one of the reasons I followed you. I don’t do that often these days because I just can’t keep up on all the reading when I follow everyone under the sun, but reading yours is a pleasure.
    As for silver linings to the pandemic, I think you mentioned one without officially mentioning it: a bloated travel account. That’s my silver lining, too, though it’s killing me to have the money sitting there just burning a hole in my pocket when I could be burning it up on flights, hotels, and experiences!
    I love the dog exchange idea. I don’t think this exists; you seem to have boundless energy, so you should probably start this up. I’ll only take 15% for putting the exchange idea in your head.

    1. Thanks so much! Means a lot that you followed me for that reason. Touche, that is a silver lining. Though, I have my fingers painfully crossed that Austrian Airlines doesn’t cancel our flights to the Balkans at the end of this month. Take my money Austrian, I need that 3 week escape! Even if it is a back-up to the second back-up plan.

      I suppose the dog exchange does exist… fostering them is a thing. I’d end up with a doggie zoo if I did that.

  2. Congratulations on your award and thanks so much for nominating me! I loved reading your answers, and I really hope you get to travel to the Balkans at the end of this month. Ireland is still at the highest level of COVID-19 restrictions. We are not allowed to travel abroad for leisure purposes and anyone arriving in Ireland, according to a new law, now must quarantine in specially designated hotels for two weeks. Looks like it’s going to be another summer on the Emerald Isle 🙂 Aiva

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