Running a successful travel blog isn't easy but I'm giving it my best go! Most bloggers do not blog as a career (I wish I did!) so we must hold the role of photographer, writer, editor, web development, office therapist, coffee intern, etc. It took me too long to understand the importance of asking for help; although I can't afford to hire someone at this time, I have the best editor there is and she's free! I'd like everyone to meet my Mamaw (that's a word us southerns use to describe our Grandmothers). Her name is Gordene and she's my editor. She's the smartest woman I know and she loves to travel, just like me! I thought it would be super fun for my readers (and me) to get perspective from someone who has been traveling over 3/4 of her life. I've compiled a list of questions for her to answer for us. I hope you enjoy!
Ragan: How many states have you visited and do you have a favorite?
Mamaw: I have visited 48 states. I would say because I know most about it, that the state I live in, Arkansas, is my favorite state. I like it because it is so diversified. The scenery ranges from the flat lands in the delta to the mountains in the Ozarks. I'm lacking Indiana and Delaware.
Ragan: How many countries have you visited?
Ragan: If you had to give up your passport and get another country's passport, what would you pick? Why?
Mamaw: Because I speak the same language, I would get a British National passport. I know I could communicate fluently.
Ragan: If you couldn't ever travel again but could pick any city to be confined to, where would you pick?
Mamaw: Once my son asked me if I had to be put in a nursing home what city did I want him to put me in and I said, just leave me in El Dorado, which is where I live now.
*I would like to point out that this answer really surprised me!
Ragan: What was the first trip you took as an adult?
Mamaw: In 1957, I took a trip out west and went to Salt Lake City, Utah where I visited the grounds of the Mormon tabernacle and heard a noon organ recital.
Ragan: If you could be transported to one place at one time, what would it be and why?
Mamaw: I would like to go to New York City in the late 1950s or the 1960s because at that time I feel that safety wasn't as great an issue as it is now. NYC even in the 50s and 60s had a lot to offer!
Ragan: What is one thing that is too large or impractical to travel with that you wish you could bring with you when you travel?
Mamaw: That question has almost stumped me because I've got what I take with me down to a "fine tooth comb." A lot of times I wish for my friends to go but I can't afford to take them or they can't get off work or they're obligated to other things.
Ragan: For you, what are the most and least livable cities you've visited?
Mamaw: The city that I have really thought that I would like to live in is San Diego, California, principally because of it's climate. The least would be McAllen, Texas. I found it to be undesirable because of crime and uncleanliness.
Ragan: What is one food you could never eat in your home country again because you've tasted the original version in its country of origin?
Mamaw: I've eaten some strange stuff. I know what my husband would say, it would be pineapple right out of the field in Africa but I haven't been there. It's difficult for me to select some fruit in the United States after eating fresh coconut, pineapple, and banana from Jamaica.
Ragan: Tell me the one piece of advise you have for a beginner traveler? For a seasoned traveler?
Mamaw: For a beginner traveler I would say, one of the most important pieces of advise I can give is to learn to pack minimally. For a seasoned traveler I would say, never pass up seeing something you really want to see thinking you can come back because it might not be in the cards for you to make that trip again.
I hope you learned something from my Mamaw, I know I did!