“A what?” I hear you ask.
Liebsters are awarded by fellow bloggers who want to share the love, and mine was given by the delightful Sharon of Jasmine and Ginger (who, if you don’t already read her blog, is a super-foodie living on the teeny island of Cheung Chau, lover of bacon and all-round top bird).
The idea is that Liebsters help spread the word about smaller blogs like mine, and as Mr T-T LOVES to point out whenever we play board games, the rules help to control the fun. And so:
Liebster nominees should:
• Link back to the blog that nominated them
• Nominate 5-10 other bloggers, all of whom have less than 200 followers (this part is harder than you’d think!)
• Answer questions posted by them from their nominator
• Share 10 random facts about themselves
• Create 10 new questions for their nominees to answer
• Contact their nominees to let them know they’ve been nominated
Capisce? So here goes with answering Jasmine and Ginger’s questions:
Where’s the best place you’ve travelled to and why?
Sri Lanka. It’s a truly beautiful country and has everything you could ever want from a holiday destination. Ancient monuments, beaches, animals, mountains, food like I’ve never tasted, the friendliest people… the lot. We travelled there when Baby T-T was six months old and loved it. I would go back in a heartbeat.
What’s your favourite book and why?
So very many to choose from, but up there is The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy by the late, great Douglas Adams. Hilarious, clever, unique and still fresh after all these years (it was published in 1979 after being adapted from a BBC radio play which, if it’s even possible, is funnier still), this opened my eyes to comedy writing at the age of about 11 and is endlessly quotable, which is ideal for a geek like me.
What are your top 3 favourite songs of all time?
Not possible to pick just three – I’m sorry, I just can’t! I’m an indie kid at heart but there are too many other influences these days.
What’s your knee-jerk reaction to anything bad that happens and how do you handle stress?
Expletive-laden rage. Chocolate.
Who is your most favourite person that is not your offspring or spouse or immediate family?
My wonderful friends. Again, I can’t pick just one I’m afraid as I am lucky enough to have some bloody amazing people who choose to hang out with me.
Alternatively, the doctor who confirmed my pregnancy by saying “Babies are basically parasites. That’s why you’re feeling so tired, it’s sucking the very life out of you,” then sent me on my way with a prescription for a bloody steak and a bowl of creamed spinach. She was pretty amazing.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
America’s Next Top Model. Ideally while eating a massive peanut butter and cheese sandwich. There’s something about the proximity to all that perfect flesh that makes the high fat and carb content so much more deliciously satisfying.
Who / what inspires you in your day to day life?
My son inspires me to be a more patient, organised and sensible person than I ever thought possible.
What are you most proud of?
I’m obviously going to say my son here.
But aside from that little bundle of crazy, the fact that Mr T-T and I have always taken the initiative to make things happen for ourselves rather than waiting for life to happen to us. Typically, I come up with the insane plan (“let’s move to… Asia! Let’s have a baby! In Shanghai!!”) and he’s good at the practical implementation. We’re a pretty efficient operation.
Oh, and my hair. It’s sooo red. I am very proud of it.
What do you want / hope for yourself?
To be richer than Croesus, a hugely successful writer and a decent parent. Who has an amazing collection of vintage handbags.
What advice would you give to your 16 year old self?
• One day, not long from now, you’ll quite suddenly realise that you don’t actually care what other people think about you and your life will improve immeasurably from that point on.
• You’ll never look good in shorts, so don’t even bother.
• Don’t splurge that hideous sum of money on a bottle of Chanel Rouge Noir nail polish because Uma Thurman wore it in Pulp Fiction – you’re 18, you definitely can’t afford it and it won’t look nearly as amazing as you think it will.
• Keep writing.
• Never trust a Lonely Planet map.
10 random facts about The Accidental Tai-Tai
• I was born in Merseyside, lah (they say that in Liverpool as well as HK – I was clearly destined to live here).
• I was a strict vegetarian for 18 years until I moved to Hong Kong.
• I have one small tattoo. I was thinking of getting another, but I’ve gone right off pain since giving birth.
• I am a bit obsessed with buying new pyjama bottoms. (C’mon, I’m a freelance writer. What do you think we wear?).
• I speak fluent Welsh.
• I spent nearly four months searching for the perfect shade of red lipstick to match my red wedding dress.
• I have lived in three of the world’s greatest cities. And Reading.
• I was once offered a puff on an illicit cigarette by a (very) minor celeb musician backstage at a gig. I declined as I was designated driver (masking the fact that I am just very uncool).
• This is not my natural hair colour. No, really.
• Jam before cream on a scone. NEVER the other way round.
Now, if you’re still with me (well done, we’re in the home strait, I promise) it’s on to my ten questions! Here goes:
1. Why did you start blogging?
2. What’s the most interesting thing in your handbag/wallet?
3. If you had only one book to read for the rest of your life, what would it be? (Sorry to borrow quite heavily from Desert Island Discs there).
4. What possession would you never lend?
5. What is the kindest thing that someone has ever done for you?
6. If you could live anywhere in the world (other than where you live now), where would it be?
7. What is your greatest luxury?
8. Cat or dog person?
9. What is your favourite letter of the alphabet, and why?
10. What is your favourite smell?
And I nominate…
Go, go go…