Firstly, for those who haven’t read your blog before – can you explain to us a little about what your blog is about?
Wild-Spirit is a personal and lifestyle blog, wherein I basically just write about my life, what interests me, my personal point of view and opinions, where I share photographs and a few artsy stuff here and there.
I live by my motto of “Je ne regretted rien.” And very much like Edith Piaf, I live my life with no regrets. I take life day by day, I take risks, I live it to the fullest and my mistakes are what has shaped me throughout the years, I live my life with no inhibitions, and that is what being a Wild Spirit is all about, that is what my blog is all about.
Why did you first decide to set it up?
I’ve been a blogger for years, but I decided to set up Wild-Spirit and stick with two years or so ago during a turning point in my 20’s, a time I was growing up and starting to live freely. As a fickle teenager, I was always changing usernames/blog names, but I finally stuck with Wild-Spirit and took my blogging a bit more seriously since then.
How long have you been blogging for?
Since I was about 13, I believe! It’s been 10 years. Can you imagine? My first blog was on DiaryLand.com, you can check it out. It’s basically the same website, same interface, and design ever since I started 10 years ago. It’s quite amusing! So I’ve been on different blogging platforms, but continually kept the theme of my blogs pretty much the same: Personal and lifestyle.
How are you preparing your for your trip?
Well, I’ve been prepared for this my whole life, to be quite honest! Haha
- Non-stop research on Germany and places I want to visit
- VISA applications – I had my interview recently and will find out in a few days if I am granted a VISA! (Cross your fingers and toes for me!)
- Talking to my mom’s German husband for tips/do’s & don’ts in Germany (Be a smart and safe traveller!)
- Mentally (and emotionally) preparing myself for this trip that I just used to day dream about – I’m trying not to have all these expectations, good or bad. I want to just surprise myself once I’m there.
What are you most looking forward to?
I look forward to experiencing being in a totally different country that is the complete opposite of what I am accustomed to, without expectations of what the food will be like or how the people are. I’m looking forward to surprising myself with whatever I’ll learn and gain certain knowledge only few of us in the world have a privilege of learning through travelling. And as a history fan, I’m looking forward to learning a bit more of German history, albeit 10 days doesn’t seem enough to learn everything, it’s still a start!
As you probably know, the Big Blog Exchange is all about ‘changing the world, using the power of blogs’. How do you think you and your exchange can help change the world?
Everyone knows that Germany and one of the biggest world war events go hand in hand. The holocaust was a picture of many, including prejudice, discrimination, and racism. I already have my own notions about past and present Germany, World War II, etc. but many still go on with their lives unknowing and completely ignorant of that part of history. It’s my hope that through my exchange, I can open the eyes and the minds of these people… Even if it’s just one person. Sometimes it only takes one person, to change their mind about their views and beliefs, and that can somehow start a domino effect, and that would’ve been enough.
How do you plan to record your trip? Are you going to be blogging through video, pictures, written words or all three?
I plan to do all three, actually! Video recording, lots of photos and written words and integrate them not just through blog posts but through other social media (Instagram and twitter) as well.
If anyone knows of great prepaid sim cards with great data that I can use while in Germany, let me know! 🙂 I want to keep all social media accounts updated as much as possible!
Are you excited at the prospect of swapping blogs?
It’s really exciting! But also scary! I will be exchanging with Tine from Lunch For One, and hopefully her readers will welcome me with open arms! It’s not just me who finds the blog exchange exciting, but rather some of my readers as well. They can’t wait to see the adventures Tina will embark on during her stay in the Philippines!
Is this your first time travelling or have you travelled before?
I’ve travelled to neighbouring countries of the Philippines but never outside Asia!
Have you heard about Hostelling International before, or is this your first experience with us (have you said HI to the world yet)? Are you excited?
I actually only heard of HI when BBE started. I’m so thankful to have discovered HI, though! Now I can actually plan trips without worrying about expensive lodging. Honestly, knowing HI exists makes me happy!
Are your readers excited about your trip? Have you been blogging in the run up to the exchange?
My readers are my biggest supporters aside from family. You wouldn’t believe the vast amount of tweets, messages and emails I’ve been getting congratulating me and expressing their joy and excitement for me! It’s really sweet! It’s been two weeks since the official announcement of winners was made and I still get congratulatory messages. It’s surreal! Everything is happening so fast and there’s not much time to plan so I’ve been so busy! I’ve sort of lost track of blogging, but I’ll get back to the swing of things soon!
What tips can you give for your exchange partner? What can he/she explore in your city/country?
- Keep an open and adventurous mind!
- Have fun, but keep your guard up because it’s not always safe around, especially in the Manila area.
- Filipinos, in generally, love foreigners and so Filipinos will LOVE you!
- Filipinos are really welcoming and nice, so don’t be alarmed if you’re treated instantly like family…
- Much like any city, be wary of your surroundings. Don’t flash expensive products such as your iPhone or iPods because they pose a pickpocketing thread. Carry small change instead of large bills. And be careful of being scammed, sometimes cab drivers will scam you into paying more money than you should. The meter shouldn’t lie, no matter how much traffic or whatever reason they give. The meter is what you follow.
- The weather can get pretty bipolar, it’s scorching hot one day and raining the next, so bring lightweight clothing and a jacket for the rain. June is the start of our rainy season.
Things to explore in the city/country:
- The food, especially the most famous street food and my favorite, Taho, because Tina is a sweet tooth!
- Maybe try Balut if you’re feeling really adventurous. Alright, alright… You can skip the duck/chick, but eat the rest. It’s really not that bad, because the yellow part is basically just egg yolk. If you don’t know what Balut is, you can Google for a photo, I’ll skip posting a photo here in case you guys are easily grossed out…
- Bargain shopping at Greenhills or Divisoria (although I wouldn’t recommend Divisoria if you’re going alone. Not even I go alone.)
- Explore Old Manila with Carlos Celdran, you honestly cannot go wrong!
Where should he/she go? Or what should they do?
- Spend at least two to three days at one of our famous beaches! Cebu, Boracay, Palawan! Nothing spells ultimate relaxation like crystal clear water, white sand, and the sound of the waves hitting the shore. Just thinking about it makes me want to go to the beach right now.
- Visit the Chocolate Hills. Our Department of Tourism recently came up with the slogan: “My Humps. More Fun in The Philippines” for the Chocolate Hills! I have a good chuckle every time I see that advertisement… I’m easily amused.
- Old Manila, China Town, places with architecture and stuff you don’t normally see/find in Europe!
What do you find most rewarding about being a blogger?
I find that being able to connect to total strangers and somehow affect their lives in a positive way is the most humbling and rewarding thing, especially when it goes both ways. I have a great relationship with my readers and they have helped me grow so much over the years, as much as I hope I have helped them as well. It’s a wonderful support system.
As a blogger or as a writer, I have a voice, an influence, and knowing I can use this talent for good assures me that in this life where I’m constantly trying to find solid ground as to who I am or what my sole purpose is, at least I know I’ve done something right.
Visit Camie’s blog here.