Confessions of a Travel Blogger
A few months ago I had the opportunity to speak to a tourism marketing class at Indiana University about my work experience in digital media and how it relates to the tourism industry. It went well. I received a number of questions so most of them had to have been listening right? The other surprising result? A handful of the questions were about my blog; they wanted to know how to start one and and why. These are the easier questions to answer. I didn't realize 'til later that I didn't share enough of the behind the scenes truths... The nitty gritty that you might not necessarily know by looking at my Instagram grid. So here we go.
Confessions of a Travel Blogger
I do not have the luxury of blogging full time (yet).
No, I'm not at home everyday in my comfy yoga clothes with my pups by my side. By day, I am a digital media manager and freelance writer here in Bloomington, Indiana. My little hobby has grown over the years and my curious personality and wonderful readers are what keep me going. I save as much money as I can to put towards my next trip. Sometimes I do receive free or discounted products or hotel rates, but I travel for me and you, the reader. I share my experiences in hopes to inspire adventures for you. However, I'd be lying if I didn't hope that this passion project turn into a full time gig.
If you're a destination or travel related brand looking to work with someone like me contact me here.
I have an old car.
I fell in love with my early 90s jeep wrangler when we lived in Hawaii. She was bright red with the retro sunset graphic on the doors. It was so much fun to drive too. I don't know how to explain that feeling but people with manual transmissions know what I'm talking about. Maybe it's something about being in control. Anyway, Ryan's dad gave us his old Jeep Cherokee in grad school and I ended up adopting it as my car. This may not sound relevant but when it comes to road trips, the jeep can be a bit of a challenge. First of all, driving for hours without cruise control is not fun. Not to mention my jeep needs constant attention and care and sometimes shit breaks out of the blue and throws a wrench in plans. For example, a few weeks ago I'd taken off work Friday so I could get up at the crack of dawn and drive to Lexington for a weekend with my good friend Celia. I realized when I was getting gas that something was leaking. Long story short, my jeep had to go to the shop for a couple of weeks and I rented a car (thanks Budget) last minute to travel to Bourbon Country.
I cannot pack light.
I know as a frequent traveler I should be good at packing. I am not. I pack a full size rolling back for three days. Can you envision how much I pack for a two week road trip? I know it is absurd but I love clothes and like to have options. Not to mention all the beer I usually bring home with me. When I fly, it's usually on Southwest because of the free bags. Stay tuned for photos of my ginormous suitcase heading to Tucson next month.
I'm pretty awkward in front of the camera.
Left: My friend Josh suggested I strike a power pose to shake my nerves. Right: Just a little liquid courage
My sweet Instagram husband and a few patient friends and family members indulge my blogging habit by taking my photo when traveling with me. Despite having grown up as a kid model (back in the days of the department store catalogs) I feel hopelessly awkward having my photo taken. Not posing, I can smile all day. It's the supposedly casual & candid photos that give me trouble. I never know what to do with my arms and feel like I'm just constantly laughing at myself. Sometimes it works, like this one, but more often than not it's like the gems above. If I'm by myself, I have to get really creative. I shoot tons of photos to get one decent one. Most look completely ridiculous. Get Lost with Jackie wrote about this recently too. HILARIOUS.
I am not a digital nomad and I'm not sure I want to be one.
I used to have romantic ideas about traveling the world non stop and untethered without ever having to go "back home" but I like having both. Not knocking the nomads. Props to y'all. It's just not for me. I've moved around quite a bit but there is something to be said about having a home base. I love coming home to my hubs and two big puppies, having somewhere to stash the quirky antiques I keep collecting, and plenty of weekends spent hiking, drinking beer, and seeing shows in our funky college town.
If you can relate to any of this, I'd love to hear from you in the comments.