Everyday we have the chance to meet amazing and unique people. Today I had the opportunity to show you guys an amazing interview about one inspiring individual who would like to make a difference in this world. They are the people of today.
I’ve had, yet again, another opportunity to interview a fellow travel blogger who has been traveling, sharing and inspiring its readers to brave up and see the world. Gemma of Two Scots Abroad has been around and I’ve been seeing her actively on nearly every group I joined in Facebook. I’m so happy to get the chance to introduce her to you all, my dear readers. Another power couple roaming in this pretty, wild world to inspire you all.
» Hello and welcome to Pretty, Wild World’s interview series “People of Today”. To start with, tell us something about yourself?
I’m Gemma, one half of Two Scots Abroad. The other half is my handsome partner in crime, Craig. We are both Scottish (funnily enough), and have downed tools as teacher and tradesman to travel the Americas and Europe for 18 months. I like thrift shop clothes, unicorns and dancing. Craig is a space geek who is obsessed with electronic music and cookies.
» Great, its a pleasure to connect with you! Lets talk about your blog– yourblog.com, and tell us the story behind it and why you created it?
After my career break from teaching was authorised, my friend Andy instructed that I set up a blog with its own domain name. My initial response was – I don’t have the skills set to do that. I had created previous blogs on community type sites for past travelling experiences (Australia and South East Asia) but did not know my plug ins from my permalinks! After a well needed family break to Turkey last October, with a clear head I decided to go for it. I wanted to share this impressive trip with folks back home and travel lovers. Craig and I came up with the name, Two Scots Abroad, because there are two of us, we’re from Scotland, and we’re not at home. Simple and effective, it usually gets a laugh when we share it. Two Scots Abroad is now over one year old! Youtube was my best friend in the beginning and I am a member of lots of very supportive blogging communities, this keeps me sane and skilled.
» Name two destination which gave you the ‘chills’ upon seeing it because of its beauty?
Emerald Lake in the Canadian Rockies. It had been raining on and off the day we visited Emerald Lake but that added a strange but intriguing atmosphere to the area. Have you seen the Rockies’ lakes? Milky and turquoise, I’ve never seen anything like it. Striking. Glencoe, Scotland. The mountains always make me feel inferior, but I like it! The deer are pretty friendly and photogenic. It’s my favourite spot in Scotland.
» In your travels, what is the three most memorable experience you ever had and why?
We started this career break in America and planned it to begin in March so we could attend the music festival ,South By Southwest in Austin. It is on during term time so it wasn’t accessible to me whilst teaching. This made it a pretty big deal, ‘once in a lifetime’ experience. Every shop, cafe, venue, opens its doors to live music, and as long as you are prepared to queue, you get to see lots of gigs for free! We saw Will Butler from Arcade Fire for free, and even enjoyed free beer and breakfast tacos at his show! That once in a lifetime opportunity has now extended to a twice in a lifetime, see you there next March! One of my favourite days was the day trip to Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia aka The Salt Flats. We spent the day abusing the vast horizon. It gives you the opportunity to take silly photos, with the aid of clever photography; you can fall into a Pringles tub or be chased by a dinosaur! Our tour guide stayed around the sunset and that was spectacular. Diving in the Bay of Pigs, Cuba was magic. It was Craig’s first time diving and my second. I love that feeling of freedom under the sea. I plan to do a night dive when we are in Central America in February.
» Tell us few amazing realisation you learned through travelling and your experience whilst on the move.
You don’t need much! I do like clothes but I have never been one for designer labels. Once you have travelled with a backpack, you learn quickly that you don’t need a Mulberry handbag or an Audi TT. These are just material things, and if your friends care that you own them, ditch those pals. Don’t be stubborn. There are two prongs to this. Firstly, being stubborn whilst travelling with someone else (partner, friend, family member) won’t get you anywhere. Actually it will, but you’ll do doing it alone. Secondly, your views and opinions can change. Meet people, visit places, talk and listen. This will shape your outlook, which is not predetermined, or fixed.
» Can you share to us some of the goals you wish to achieve with your blog and as well your life on the road.
The goal for Two Scots Abroad is to keep the blog progressing as it is. Each month (on the whole), monthly views increase as well as our social media reach. We had our first big account Instagram repost this week, which is pretty exciting! I plan to keep entertaining our readers with our stories, sharing our travel photography and making people laugh through our Overheard Whilst Travelling guest post series.
It would be an achievement to get Craig down to one rucksack (he has a carry on suitcase too) but that would be pushing it. He carries the bags so I can’t really complain. We both really need more practice at our Spanish (don’t want the intense week at school in Cusco, Peru to go to waste) so looking forward to Central America to keep hablando español (your readers can tell me if that’s correcto!)
Salar de Uyuni (Salt Flats)
» Undeniably you are already very inspirational, to start and run a travel blog is very stressful on its own – what advice you can give to people who wish to start one?
Pick a decent theme! My first theme had a disappearing sidebar and I was jealous when I saw other bloggers with neat things displayed on theirs. I was warned that changing themes could mess up your site; luckily enough the switch was smooth.
- Don’t sweat the little things. I still need to go back and add my parent categories (waiting for a rainy day!)
- Take photos in horizontal (to the width that you blog requires) and vertical (for gorgeous Pinterest pins).
- Youtube how to SEO. This will save you going back and having to fix up posts once you learn about it.
- Network. Blogging is a business and bloggers are your colleagues and your future partners and / or bosses!
Be patient with social media – it took us over one year to gain 1K followers on IG and our photos are badass. Be wary of ‘the game’ – remember if you like 4K accounts in order to get 3K followers back, it’s your newsfeed which is tainted with selfies and pictures of Bieber! Engage and speak to readers on social media. That’s how you get a solid following.
Ask! We write a monthly travel column for our local newspaper at home and all we did was contact the paper and enquired!
» Since I personally consider you as “People of Today”, a lot of youngsters are losing directions noting all the things the media has been feeding us – tells us something you wish you can do in order to inspire younger generations?
I’m in a prime position for this, being a high school teacher. I always abuse my position as ‘inspirational leader’ and corrupt the young minds with tales from travelling!
We teach a unit on inequalities around the world with our youngest classes (age 10 -12). This gives me the chance to show my photos from South East Asia, the students are fascinated by the food, the culture, the villages, yet not so much by the man with dead cats in a cage!
Soames Hill, Gibsons
» Is there anything you wish to change in this world which you wish you can contribute and what is it?
I wish everyone had a vote and the opportunity to take part in the running of their country. Democracy has its flaws but it is important to empower people and let them have a voice. I also believe in equal rights for all, and that religion and business should not effect the way our government representatives make laws. I despise greed. And obviously world peace and trips to space so Craig can visit Mars.
» Can you send out a message to people who wish to travel and be inspired – a motivational piece! 🙂
Are you waiting for it to happen or making it happen?
Thank you very much for this interview and more power to you and your blog! May your adventure continues and keep inspiring people <3
De nada. Loving your work!
All photo credits belong to Gemma and Craig of Two Scots Abroad. Please pay them a visit and let them know how amazing they are!
Pretty, Wild World is interested on interviewing more creative individuals out there to feature in this website. I want to share your talent, creativity and imagination to my readers and as well to this world because I believe that with a little imaginations we could live in a better world. If you’re a creative individual and is interested to get featured please click on this link or email me directly at contact(at)prettywildworld(dot)com.
Inspiring Creatives. If you’re interested to read more about the people I interviewed and would like to learn more about interesting people please click this link. I have more interesting individuals coming! Stay tuned <3
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