This post has nothing to do with socks, or house elves, or Harry Potter, sadly. Sorry.
Instead, it’s a bit more think-y, and involves some thinking on what it is that defines a travel blogger? What ‘counts’ as travel content? With a special guest appearance from ‘am I a big ol’ fraud?’. I touched on this on a recent blog post but it’s something I’ve been having a lot of thoughts about recently, for a few reasons. And I wanted to explore it in a bit more depth, if for no other reason than to sort out my brain a little.
This week, I had the amazing news that I’ve been freakin’ SHORTLISTED in the BLOGGERS BLOG AWARDS in the TRAVEL CATEGORY. And I’m over the moon, tbh. Thankyou, thankyou to anyone who voted for me. Or reads, comments, interacts on social. Anything. Y’all rock. I’m up against some AMAZING blogs (including the wonderful Charlie, one of my best girls) so have no vision of winning, but just being nominated is pretty ace.
(Incidentally though, if you fancy giving me your vote in the final round, I’d appreciate you about a million times and do a little happy dance. You can vote here!)
As much as I’m SO happy to have made the list, I’m also being hit with major impostor system. Sensible Milly brain is like ‘yo girl, people think you’re good at this y’know’, and I’m really enjoying creating my current content. I’m at such a happy point with my internet space – but it doesn’t stop the self-critical thoughts we all struggle with at times.
‘You’re not a proper travel blogger! There are more people worthy of this than you! How are YOU qualified to recommend things to people! You’ve spent the last month in London, phony!’
You get the idea.
Although it’s on the future plans list, I’ve never packed up and hit the road for months on end, and at my current point in life I don’t have a desire to. I love my job, my London life. In some ways, that makes me feel like a bit of a fraud. Surely travel bloggers are supposed to be, y’know, travelling all the time? And for the next month and a half or so, I don’t actually have anything booked up that doesn’t involve leaving the UK…
But travel is for anyone. And I choose to focus on showing others in similar positions to myself (young…ish people with careers, homes, pretty busy lives and a pressing new show to watch on Netflix) that it’s totally possible to travel to awesome places too.
(In the interests of transparency, I do also work in the travel industry – but that actually accounts for very little of the travel I talk about here – instead I take advantage of weekends, bank holidays, and using my holiday allowance super effectively…!)
To focus on the fact that travel doesn’t have to mean hopping from country to country. In the UK, there are TONS of great places that you can get to before the sun goes even down on Friday evening – and be in bed by 10pm on Sunday, ready for the working week ahead. And UK travel is 100% ‘real travel content’ – check out the amazing Erica who’s the absolute QUEEN of exploring every corner of this lil country.
That there are affordable ways to get to places – you don’t have to be on a megabucks salary and scrimp to the bone on everyday life. Spending 3 nights in hostels so you can spend the fourth in a 4* hotel; getting a cheap coach so you can afford to eat in a fancy restaurant. That it’s about balance.
That you can experience other cultures in many ways without getting on a plane, train, boat or bus – through food, through art and theatre and music and all the other good things you can find closer to home. Exploring your own city and telling the world about it may not seem obvious as travel content to you – but to anyone living elsewhere, looking to visit, it totally is.
I started this blog because I wanted to do more, to live life. To tell stories. And through the travel I get to do and experiencing all the great things the world has to offer, near or far, I like to think I’m doing that.
And if all else fails, I just have an excuse to eat plenty, I guess.