Before I went on my RTW travels, I could be often found stalking other travel blogs but what really interested me was the travel blogger behind the witticisms of their writing. Who are they? Are they real? Are they fit? So hence, for a long time coming, I wanted to do some travel blogging interviews and crack them open for their rawness inspiration of travel inside. Think Michael Parkinson.
This week’s interview is no other than the greatest deaf travel blogger around. She’s about to embark on an odyessy of round the world kicking off in Europe starting with namely the best country I reckon – Britain . I first met her when she grabbed me at the HostelBookers Party at the World Travel Market and told me that she is deaf. I was pretty excited and inspired by her travels. Without much further ado, I give you Cherie of the Flight of the Travel Bee.
1. Name: Cherie King
2. Twitter: Thetravelbee
3. Facebook Fan Page: Flight of the Travelbee
4. Blog URL: www.flightofthetravelbee.com
5. Where are you originally from and where are you now?
Currently in Idaho at the moment; I’ve moved to many different cities across the U.S, but I will always be a California girl! (Ed Note: Katy Perry Wannabe!)
6. Describe yourself in 3 words.
Deaf, Nomad, Resilient (I’m a Cancer Survivor!)
7. Tell us about your blog. What makes your blog unique from all the other bloggers out there?
I wanted to create a blog about my experiences as a Deaf traveller, and to raise awareness about the Deaf community and the struggles they face when they travel.
8. Why did you start writing a blog? And did you find it easy to set up?
I started it to share my experiences travelling as a Deaf person.
As for the blog it was easy to set up at first, but now that the blogging world has become very competitive you have to keep up with the demand and be 100 percent committed.
9. If you had to travel with 3 other travel bloggers who would they be?
There are so many travel bloggers I would love to travel with but if I had to choose they would be Ed Rex from Rexyedventures (be fun to travel with a fellow Deaf blogger!) Kristin Luna from CamelsandChocolate.com and Alexa Johnson from Zaggitravels(a newcomer blogger, and fellow SAS alum of whom I will be travelling again with this spring)
10. What’s the best advice you can give for new bloggers?
Be honest, focused, figure out what you want to write about and follow it, and most importantly find your niche (and try to make your domain name matches your niche. Something I wish I had learned myself, and make sure you love it and that you won’t grow out of it) and be absolutely committed.
11. Other than a job, what’s the easiest way to make money for travels?
Selling as much as you can on craigslist or not spending money much when you are home, you don’t need the extra pair of shoes, or a brand new laptop when you already have a working one. Scrounge and save as much as you can, and most importantly prioritize what is important to you as far as expenses.
12. Where have you been in the world? And which was the best, worst, funniest, most random and scariest?
Oh gosh, the list gets longer each year; I have been to 5 out of 7 continents so far now I just need to cross of the other two from my bucket list!
Best- would have to be a toss-up between England (Ed Note: because I live here right?) and Cape Town, South Africa.
Worst- Luckily there hasn’t been a place that I’ve hated, there are pros and cons to each country I visit, I guess that is the optimist side of me.
Most Random- Witnessing a friend’s shotgun wedding in Vietnam, probably the most random travel experience I’ve witnessed, but fun though!
Funniest- I’d say Hong Kong, only because of the massive Rugby Final party that I stumbled upon on Lan Kwai Fong. Thousands of people were dressed up in costumes, and drinking… I could have sworn I saw a man dressed up as Spongebob Squarepants, and another dressed up as the Where’s Waldo character!
Scariest- I say Vietnam, because I was mugged there. Even though I loved Vietnam, but that has to be one of the scariest moments I’ve encountered in my travels.
13. Naughtiest experience on your travels?
Naughtiest experience on my travels would have to be partying it up on Lan Kwai Fong Street for the Rugby final in Hong Kong… Thousands of people on one street with lots of booze flowing….Probably one of the worst hangovers I’ve ever experienced to date…..
14. Luggage or Backpack?
It depends usually I bring my backpack, but when I travel by ship or take a road-trip I bring a luggage, since I can store it and not worry about it. Otherwise I say Backpack.
15. Top 3 items that you would save from your backpack if it was about to be sunk in shark infested waters?
Hearing aid Batteries (Ed Note: Good thinking! I didn’t think about that!), Iphone and Camera.
16. Skydiving or Bungee Jumping?
Skydiving absolutely but I could never go Bungee Jumping it’s actually one of my biggest fears, I cannot fathom jumping of a bridge with a string attached to your ankles…
17. Best travel idol (aside from me, of course) that you would want to sit next to on the plane?
P.F Kluge, a snarkier version of Anthony Bourdain (seriously they could be twins) He was my teacher on Semester at Sea- amazing novelist, and he wrote an article that inspired the Al Pacino film “Dog Day Afternoon”. He has been featured in many travel magazines and written several novels. I am very blessed and lucky to have him as my mentor, but I would love to see him again and travel with him again.
18. What’s your party trick to show to other backpackers in hostels?
Obviously Sign Language. I always wind up teaching people Sign Languages in my travels but I love it though. It makes me happy that people all over the world are interested in Sign Language and want to learn how to sign a word or two.
19. Hostel, Guesthouse, Hotel or Couchsurf?
Recently went to a Hostel in London, had a great experience so I would say Hostel, and Hotels. Haven’t tried couchsurfing yet, might someday.
20. Day Trip, Backpack or live? UK, Australia or Vietnam?
Live in UK (always been my dream to do so) (Ed Note: Woop! Woop!) Day Trip Vietnam (Loved it, and want to go back again and go to Hanoi next time) Backpack Australia (Haven’t gone yet, and have family living there now, so I would definitely love to backpack Australia!)
21. Lonely Planet or Rough Guide?
Depends, both of them have great books; however the majority of my bookshelf has Lonely Planet Guides.
22. Will you go out with me, a sexy, tall, dark and handsome god?
Ooh a sexy, tall, dark and handsome god that is Deaf and signs?! (Ed Note: Well I’m just the perfect package!)
23. Did you find love on your travels?
No, not yet but so far I can easily say that I love the places I’ve been, the life-long friends that I’ve made, the locals, the culture, food, the history, language and the way of life in each country. I am fascinated by the world, and what it has to offer, and I love the fact that travelling gives me the ability to learn something new each day.
24. Would you go on I’m a Celebrity and eat pig’s testicles?
I am always up for something new, however this doesn’t sound so appealing…(Ed Note: Go on, you know you want to..)
25. And possibly, the most important question…Neighbours or Home and Away?!
After a quick search on Google haha, I have to say I have never watched these shows…Will have to check them out now!
26. Which 3 songs have you played the most on your ipod on your travels?
Fortunately my hearing aid allows me to hear music – the top three music I play on my travels is
Luckily, my Hearing aid allows me to listen to music too- so my top three songs is “Rewind” By Goldspot, “Lego House” by Ed Sheeran and “One day like this” by Elbow
27. You travelled on your own, how did that go for you and did you find it easy to make new friends on the road?
I have travelled on my own before, it is difficult as a Deaf person, sometimes you meet friendly people who are willing to help you and sometimes you don’t- you just have to figure out a way to communicate, and most importantly I let them know up front that I am deaf, especially when I am at the Airport, Train stations, Hotels, etc.
28. What are your next travel plans?
Next will be the Travel Bloggers Unite Conference in Rotterdam, Holland , then Paris, Belgium and after that I will be returning to Semester at Sea for their Enrichment voyage in May; the ports of call are England, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Latvia, Germany, and Russia! (Ed Note: I’m a tad jealous…)
29. What’s the best advice you can give to first time travellers?
Have an open mind, and be polite in other countries – respect their culture and converse with the locals. Invest in a good backpack, they will last forever, make sure you stock up on medicine as it is hard to get it overseas. Most importantly be cautious of your surroundings, trust your guts and don’t ever feel that you are missing out if you don’t feel like you are in a safe situation.
30. Finally, tell us a funny travel story…
Well, here’s a funny and embarrassing story….I was docked in Keelung, Taiwan during my study abroad trip around the world with Semester at Sea. A bunch of my friends and I decided to go hop on the train to Taipei, to do some sightseeing. After visiting the National Palace Museum, we decided to venture into the city and walk around, until I announced to the group that I had to go to the bathroom. So, five of us were scrambling around for half an hour looking for a bathroom in Taipei, we couldn’t understand any Mandarin. I was frustrated, almost to the point of tears, I just couldn’t hold it anymore and very, very embarrassed. My friend KP shouted out “Look!” pointing to a lit up sign with a Woman/Man Bathroom Sign. I was so happy, I ran into the place thinking it was a bathroom. Turns out it was a restaurant called Modern Toilet! The entire decor was dedicated to a bathroom theme, the seats were funky color toilets, the dishes were served in mini toilet plates, and they even had a full shower on display (not functioning, thankfully). Luckily they had an actual bathroom in the restaurant, how can a bathroom themed restaurant not have one? If it weren’t for me, we would have never stumbled upon this really fun, yummy restaurant despite the name... (Ed Note: Wow, great story…I was about to think that you did your business on one of their seats while ordering…)
Thanks Cherie for doing this interview! If you would like to know more about her journeys, click here.
If you would like to have an interview, please drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you featured on here!