I love vegetarianism and how it relates to travel so I was super excited when Katie Baxter of World Wide Vegetarian did an interview with me! Check out her answers below!
First of all, what are your website and social media links?
How did you come up with your website name?
When I first started blogging, my site was called “A D.C. Nanny” because I am a nanny in Washington D.C., and I intended to write about politics, and kids, and share some recipes. I really didn’t have a direction for this blog, I just wanted to start something and see where it went. I ended up posting mostly recipes and travel stories on this blog, and the title just no longer made sense. I wanted to title my new site “World Wide Veg” (a play on the world wide web) but that was taken, so World Wide Vegetarian was what I went with instead. I think it sums up the main topics of my blog very well, as the focus of my blog is vegetarian food all over the world.
What more can you tell us about your blog? What are your goals or intentions for it?
I started off just wanting to make money, and I bought into all the glamour of the consultant style life. I am having trouble finding an occupation that I like in my field in D.C. so I decided it was time to forge my own path. But after working on my blog now for about 7 months, I have given up my desire to have my blog as a full time profession. For now, I like connecting and meeting people in the travel community, and as a relatively new vegetarian, it has really helped me connect and learn from other vegetarians and vegans. I would like to make a little money off of my blog, as I do invest a lot of my time and money into it, and I would like to use it as an online presence to help with a future wellness business I hope to create.
Can you provide us with a Throw Back Thursday picture of one of your favorite travel memories with an explanation?
This photo was taken by one of my best friends while visiting the sand dunes on the Outer Banks in North Carolina. I am so often looking to travel overseas, I love it when I find beautiful places close to home to remind me that there is always an escape from reality around the corner.
Which are your favorite and least favorite cities you’ve traveled to? Why?
All time favorite: Berlin, because it is crazy eclectic, grungy, full of history, and has the best parties anywhere in the world! I am a bit biased as well, as I speak German, and it was my first destination I visited overseas. But I love it even more now as a vegetarian, because it is very easy to find veggie and even vegan food in this city.
Least Favorite: Brussels. I had a weird experience in Brussels. I don’t speak French, and this was my first destination outside of a German or English speaking country, back when I was less of an experienced traveler. So since I don’t speak French, I couldn’t understand the tram stops, and I just got off, and got lost, per ususal, carrying about 70 pounds of junk with me (really I am not exaggerating). So I ended up walking about a kilometer, and ran into the police station. With no idea where I was, I asked the police officers outside to help me out. They insisted on giving me a ride, stating that I really should take a ride if I “wanted to keep my stuff”, and I gladly accepted as I was not going to drag my suitcases around anymore. Once we were in the car, they told me that I had to be careful in the neighborhood that I was staying in, as it was a “hostile Islamic neighborhood.” So during my short stay, I did feel uncomfortable at night past 7pm, when only disapproving men in traditional dress stared at my bare forearms. Besides that, no one in the hostel spoke English, and it was just an odd experience overall. The city itself is pretty, but I just didn’t have a great time there, and would advise people to skip it. I have heard there are better cities in Belgium, but I don’t know if I will be back in Belgium anytime soon.
What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten? Where?
Even when I was a meat-eater, I was never really into “strange foods,” however, going vegetarian has made me more adventurous. I eat many things now that I would have never eaten before, because odd cuts of meat always freaked me out. I will say, the strangest thing I ate was fried pig skin, on my last weekend ever eating meat while at my friend’s house in Chicago. My friend comes from Mexico and his mother cooks many authentic dishes, including a dish of pig skin in sauce, so I tried it, and I really didn’t like it.
Who are your travel idols?
Anthony Bourdain. Even though he eats everything, I love that he is willing to try anything and everything, including vegan and vegetarian foods. I like his attitude and style, and that he is able to make connections with locals and feature them and their traditional cooking techniques on his TV show.
What’s your best travel tip?
Travel solo without a set plan. One of the main reasons I love solo travel is because you only have to please yourself. If you arrive in a city, and love it, you can stay and if you hate it you can leave, you never have to compromise! Plus you are more likely to meet other travelers this way, who will give you suggestions on other cities and places to visit, and you may even find yourself a travel buddy. Be open to whatever plans may come your way on your travels.
Which is your favorite post you’ve written? Please provide a link.
Since my blog is focused on travel, and on vegetarian/vegan recipes, I will give you two of my favorite posts.
My favorite travel article was my article on Reykjavik, Iceland. http://worldwidevegetarian.com/2014/06/exploring-iceland-a-layover-in-the-capital-city-reykjavik/
My favorite recipe is for Basil Quinoa Cakes: http://worldwidevegetarian.com/recipe/basil-quinoa-cakes/
What advice would you give to someone new to travel blogging?
Only do it because you love it! Travel blogging is a lot of thankless work, and it takes a lot more time, and money than I would have ever anticipated. But my blog as an outlet to share my recipes, stories, and ideas, and also as a way to connect with people around the world, which I wouldn’t trade for a thing!