The story behind the prize and a personal glimpse behind the scenes of allacrossasia
Hooray! Allacrossasia has been nominated for the „Liebster Award“! This is an award which is given to bloggers by other bloggers and only exists in the internet. There are controversial discussions among bloggers about sense and purpose of this award. I, however, come to a positive conclusion. This nomination helps “rookie bloggers” to draw attention to their still fairly young blogs, to expand their network with other fellow bloggers and to tell their readers a few private things they might not have known so far…
Eh!?! What’s this? I have been nominated for the „Liebster Award“! How cool is that? Allacrossasia has only been online for about a month! Well, I don’t know the award yet, but that’s no wonder as I’m still new to the scene. But, apparently, all the hard work is already beginning to pay off…
“Liebster Award”? What’s that all about?
Curious as I am, I want to know more about it. Which jury has chosen me? Who are the other nominees? And what do I have to do in order to settle the race in favour of allacrossasia? Some stray thoughts make me imagine myself standing on a stage, just having received a golden trophy and starting my speech: “I wanna thank the academy…”
But, at a second glance, there’s a kind of disappointment. The “Liebster Award” is a fictional award that only exists in the internet. From 2011 onwards, it has been passed on from one blogger to another and the mere nomination at the same time already means that you’ve already won the award. So, there is no jury or selection or poll whatsoever. This, again, means that there are no standardized quality expectations that have to be met. The only thing you need to achieve is to draw the attention of a current “Liebster awardee” to your blog and be lucky enough to be chosen, which might be not too difficult, as every awardee has to nominate at least five other blogs in turn.
So, is this “Liebster Award” nothing more than a chain letter in the form of a blog?
No, I wouldn’t be overly critical with it. Especially for new and still fairly unknown bloggers this award poses a nice opportunity to promote their blogs and to get in contact with other bloggers who they might not have come across otherwise. For me, being based in Hong Kong, this is particularly nice as the distance doesn’t allow for so much direct interaction with other (German-speaking) bloggers.
Hence, that’s why I appreciate the nomination given to me by Sani from “Salty toes”, a travel blog from Austria which is well worth reading! Thanks a lot, Sani!
Without this nomination, for instance, I wouldn’t have bumped into the stories of Katetravels (a Hamburg-based blogger whose stories focus on Asia? What a coincidence!) or Frau Reisehas that are of constantly high quality and a fun and entertaining read. On the other hand, most likely I also wouldn’t have taken the time to watch out for other nominees which you will find below.
Below you will find the answers to the 10 questions that I was asked:
What fascinates you most when travelling?
Getting to know the most diverse and interesting cultures and meeting the people that are rooted in these cultures.
Which travel quote do you like most?
“Ships in Harbour are safe. But that’s not what ships are built for.” (John A. Shedd, whoever that was…)
Which language would you like to master and why?
Japanese, because it is so bloody complicated to travel Japan without any knowledge of the language…
Which country would you like to visit again and which country will never ever see you again?
Generally speaking, I could imagine travelling to almost every country I’ve been to so far for at least another time. I’m sure that every country has a lot more to offer than that small portion I was able to visit.
Especially China repeatedly draws my attention, as this country is so huge and so much more than the still largely prevailing image of overpopulation and environmental problems. There’s so much going on there at the moment and it is hell interesting to witness the fast developments.
Perhaps I will never go back to Gibraltar, as I’m quite confident to say that I’ve seen everything that is of interest there 🙂
Plane or car? How do you prefer to travel?
Definitively by plane, since the most exciting and interesting places on earth are unfortunately often the most remote ones, too. Having arrived there, we often also enjoy going around by rental car.
Who is your favourite travel companion?
My wife. In the course of our relationship we have adapted perfectly to each other’s preferences, so that our travels are now as harmonic as not even travelling alone could be.
Especially since I started to take it easier and allow time for coffee or ice cream breaks instead of all-day power sightseeing 🙂
What was the most embarassing situation in your travel „career“?
During my internship in Beijing, I went with four other fellow interns to Shanghai. In the Shanghai Metro, we saw a girl that was sitting on the floor sleeping (as Chinese can sleep everywhere). She looked really wasted and we made fun of her. After getting off the train, she was right behind us on the escalator and suddenly asked us in perfect German where we came from. She told us she had studied in Stuttgart…!
Lucky for us that she had really slept before and not realized our foolery, but you bet we felt ashamed as hell. This was a real eye-opener to me and ever since then I’m more cautious…
What’s the story behind your blog?
I’ve always been a passionate traveler and friends sought my advice when it came to planning their next holiday. During my first year in Hong Kong, many friends from Germany came to visit me and I gladly showed them around. All of them were surprised how much I already knew and were happy about the background information I could give them.
I like to get to the bottom of things, also in terms of culture, history, etc. Originally, I only had a small private facebook group, in which I shared my experiences and some photos with my closest friends back home. Some of them repeatedly urged me to make more out of this. And then, at some point in time it clicked. I travel a lot all across Asia, I experience interesting things, I like to take photos and, what’s more, I also like to write – so, why not start a blog?
What is your travel advice for us?
First of all: Travel! Travel as often and as much you have the chance to do it. Only through exploring new places and things you can widen your often quoted horizon. Moreover, I’ve realized that through travelling I also get to learn a lot about myself, my identity and even my home – even though I’m far away.
Second: Be open for the different! Don’t expect the food in China to taste like in that Chinese Take-away Restaurant back home – it will indeed taste much better! And that’s only one of many examples. There are different lifestyles, traditions and rituals in this world than the ones we’re used to. These are not wrong, they’re just different. You should be able to accept that.
Ergo: leave any biased opinion at home and explore the world like a child would!
Last question: Beach or mountains?
Luckily, Hong Kong offers plenty of both choices 🙂
I grew up close to the North Sea and have always travelled to some Mediterranean islands with my parents for summer vacations. Honestly speaking, I’ve experienced mountains only many years later for the first time. But, ever since then it can’t be high enough for me. For instance, I’ve climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Mount Fuji in Japan and went on a trip to the Tibetan side of the Everest Base Camp. I literally became a highflyer 😉
Of course, I can enjoy a beach day every now and then. Only one, however, as after that I’m beginning to get nervous and want to explore things instead of lying lazily on a sunbed. Which brings me back to Hong Kong: the city that offers you the perfect mix of these passions. Just pay me a visit and get to know this city better and you’ll see for yourself!
It’s getting personal…
Next, I would like to seize this opportunity to tell my readers a little bit more about me. So, here we go: Ten random facts about Dennis!
1. Let’s start with the fact I’m most proud of: ever since I was thirteen, I have (nonstop, of course!) been together with the woman who today I call my wife.
2. However, we only married after almost 14 years of relationship.
3. This was at that time triggered by not so much romantic rather than rational reasons, as I was about to start my work in Hong Kong. Before the start of this long-distance relationship we wanted to marry as a form of promise that our relationship will last even though being geographically divided. Since then we have lived in this long-distance relationship which will fortunately end with the beginning of next year!
4. Ever since I was a child I have been a supporter of the one and only football team from Hamburg, HSV. I have to admit that during the past years this was rather torture than fun. However, “Support your local team!” is more valid than ever. I even hung a flag of my club on the balcony of my apartment, which stayed there for quite some time until a typhoon eventually tore it apart…
5. In my adolescence, I had an intensive Hip Hop and Rap phase. Today, I still like to listen to those Old School tunes. In German, particular the stuff that came from Hamburg in the late 90’s and early 2000’s. Moreover, among my friends I’m well renowned for my karaoke performances of Eminem. However, a video of such a performance I would only upload here in case I’d have more than 1,000 followers on Facebook until the end of the year 😉 Or, even better, if on the contrary nobody read my stories anymore…
6. When travelling, we always have a small companion with us which is called “Bamsen”. “Bamsen” is the Swedish word for Teddy and originated in a story written by Astrid Lindgren. When we visited Sweden and “Astrid Lindgren’s World” in 2007, we bought this cute little pig which has accompanied us ever since. It even has its own Instagram channel (https://www.instagram.com/bamsen_around_the_world) 😉
7. I have already accomplished two marathons in my life. However, during the second one I injured my knee so badly that I couldn’t do any sports for a whole year afterwards. Since then, I avoid long distance runs, but I’m always searching for alternatives. Like the Olympic distance in Triathlon or long-distance hike. For instance, I have signed up for “Lantau 50”, a 50km hike which will take place on Lantau Island in Hong Kong early December.
8. I refrained from purchasing a TV in Hong Kong and I feel good about it. There’s only trash being broadcasted, anyway, and the few interesting things you can nowadays easily stream in the internet.
9. I don’t smoke, don’t like chocolate and I don’t drink coffee. The latter fact, in particular, is hard to understand for most of my colleagues. But it’s true. I prefer tea instead. Perhaps, meanwhile, I became somehow Chinese already 😉
10. Every summer, we like to celebrate the „Schlagermove“, kind of the Hamburg Carnival, with a group of friends. At this occasion, we’re dressing up crazily and celebrate life while listening to music that most people would condemn. But with a little bit of alcohol and as a part of our group everyone will learn to love it, I’m sure. Because: “All you need is love…”
The next nominees for “Liebster Award” are…
At last, here are the five candidate blogs which I would like to nominate for Liebster:
–Betti büxt aus: Travel Blogger from Wuerzburg, Germany, who recently visited Hong Kong (unfortunately we did not know each other at that time, hence we didn’t have the chance to meet) and will start off to her world trip adventure at the end of the year – looking forward to her stories!
– Japanliebe: A lot of helpful information on the Country of the Rising Sun can be found on Elisa’s blog. She recently applied to work as volunteer during the Olympic Summer Games 2020 in Tokyo. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that it’ll work out!
– The blog „Routinebruch“ by Carina, on the other hand, focuses more on the environment of her German home state Saxony. In addition to that, she’s showing remarkable social commitment which is very appreciable.
– „Follow the shadow“ is a blog that won me over with the most recent article series on the ascent of Mt. Elbrus, Europe’s highest peak. These texts directly made me long for the mountains again…
– On wanderjahre.at, Austrian blogger Christina tells readers about her stories that recently led her to Hong Kong as well (unfortunately, the same applies as for Bettina above…). Now, she’s in New Zealand and according to her own statement she doesn’t find much time to write articles there (I hope she will find the time to answer my questions, though), however, she regularly posts updates on her Facebook and Instagram channels. As I have the plan to travel to New Zealand during Winter 2018/19, I follow her pictures with pleasure!
As a reminder for everyone the official rules of the Liebster Award, as you can also find them in the original version here.
- Thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.
- Display the award on your blog
- Write a 150-300 word post about your favourite blog that is not your own. Explain why you like the blog, provide links.
- Provide 10 random facts about yourself. (optional)
- Nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have a less than 200 followers.
- Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post
And, finally, here are my 10 questions for the newly nominated ones:
• What was your most important personal success?
• Which hidden talents do you have that – at most – your best friends would know about?
• What kind of music do you listen to during a long hour’s drive?
• How did you hit on the idea to start blogging and how did you come up with the name of your blog in this context?
• What makes your blog unique?
• What is definitely a no-go amongst bloggers?
• Why do you travel at all?
• Can you tell us about your funniest travel experience?
• If you were to choose how to spend one year of your life: Would you rather live in one particular place that you could choose anywhere in the world (if so, where would that be?) or go on a world trip (and if so, which five countries would definitely be on your bucket list)?
• Road trip or cruise ship tour? Africa or South America? And last but not least: What about Asia?
To all nominees, I wish you lots of fun when answering my questions and am looking forward to your answers and posts!