29/31 Enter the cave of wonders…

29. Where have you travelled?

That’s a bit of an open-ended question… is that travelled today, this year or travelled in my lifetime? We’d be here for a while if I opted for the latter that’s for sure…

So instead I’ll write about the last press trip I went on before I left NG Kids last year. I was sent to Slovenia in October to check out Postojna Cave and the mysterious olm that live there.

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Postojna Cave was discovered in 1818 by a local caver, called Luka ČeČ. This vast underground kingdom boasts extraordinary natural sculptures that sprout from more or less every surface. It’s so huge that you have to take a train to get into the main part of the cave! The stalactites and stalagmites here begun forming as far as two million years ago, by the water seeping through from the Pivka River. An easy way of remembering which formation was a stalactite and which was a stalagmite, was all thanks to one letter. Stalactites hang from the ceiling and stalagmites form on the ground. Clever right?!

Then there’s this little guy, which are thought to live up to 100 years old! Nicknamed the human fish, it was once thought that they were the offspring of dragons. These cave-dwelling salamander have adapted to life in the darkness in the most peculiar of ways. Although born with eyes, they soon stop developing. By the time they are four months old, skin begins to grow over them. They are still sensitive to light though, which is why it’s so tricky to get a decent picture of them. To combat the loss of vision, their hearing and sense of smell is highly developed. They’ve even got electroreceptors in their heads to help them hunt for food!

Talking about food… that’s one thing I did thoroughly enjoy – even though we were given way too much of it! Each day we were given a four course meal for both lunch and dinner, and each course came with a different wine. Needless to say, I was severely ill the second day of the trip because my body just wasn’t used to that much food – I felt I had to clear the plate each time otherwise I was given a disapproving look and asked if I didn’t like it. No pressure! However, here are some of my favourite dishes… I can’t remember exactly what was in each of them now but I just remember how amazing they tasted – especially the desserts!

On the trip, we also took part in extreme caving, visited Predjama Castle and even was given a tour of the caves underneath the castle, where there were loads of bats!

 

 

14/31 One way ticket to anywhere please

14. If you won the lottery…

Easy. I’d travel.

I’d probably start with the majority of America so that I could see all of my favourite Drag Queens perform and visit the set of The Big Bang Theory in L.A. before heading to places such as Borneo, Uganda, Rwanda, Egypt, Thailand… literally the list of places I want to see in my life time is never ending.

I guess I should start buying lottery tickets right…

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Memories of holidays past

#349: What is your very favourite holiday? Recount the specific memory or memories that have made that holiday special to you.

That’s a tricky one – I absolutely LOVED going to Walt Disney World when I was younger, because come on… it’s Disney! On the other hand, I really loved the trip to Spain as I went with all my family and we all had so much fun.

What I should do is go back to DisneyWorld in Florida with my entire family (well, my immediate, my auntie & uncle and my cousins). PERFECT!

Sink or swim

#337: Tell us about a time when you were left on your own, to fend for yourself in an overwhelming situation — on the job, at home, at school. What was the outcome?

Well, I’ll let my fellow bloggers decide whether it was a successful outcome…

For a little back story, it all began back in 2012 on my Iceland press trip (in celebration of the Ice Age 4 DVD release), where I was sent alone to represent the magazine among other publications and broadcasters from across the globe. I was also the guinea pig, the first person to do a filmed interview and a piece to camera, and without any training or practice I should add! The next filming opportunity that I was given, took place earlier this year, where I interviewed an animatronic Nigel the cockatoo from Rio 2 (Jemaine Clement was voicing him from another room) – as I’m sure everyone will agree, a most peculiar experience.

Thus bringing me to my latest project (as you can see above) – heading to Norway to celebrate the release of How To Train Your Dragon 2 on Blu-Ray and DVD. This was entirely my project; I prepared the scripts, presented and interviewed, as well as produced and edited each and every clip! It’s made me realise that this is what I want to do as a full-time career – even though it’s only my third project of this nature.

Check out my other clips below and let me know what you think!

To boldly go…

#330: An impending new year gives rise to reflection and goal setting. What will your goals for 2015 be? It’s never to early to start thinking about self improvement!

masterclass cloe drawing photo Kjersti Veel Krauss

Good question! Last year, one of my resolutions was to complete WordPress’ 365 Days of Writing Prompts challenge, which I think (minus the odd missed days – thanks Norway press trip!) I’ve managed to achieve.

Since I love self improvement, I’ll no doubt set a quite few various resolutions. Amongst them will probably be – to travel abroad at least twice (I’ve never had two holidays in one year); to finally move into London (it’s been a dream ever since I started working in central back in 2012); to progress in my career – whether it be in magazines/publishing, video editing/presenting/producing or even PR; to take part in more video interview/junkets and video projects; and no doubt to learn something new – whether it be mastering photography, finally learning British Sign Language through official tuition or even taking classes on a particular video editing software… I just love being a sponge!

Image of myself with Head of Character Animation for How To Train Your Dragon 2, Simon Otto: Kjersti Veel Krauss

Fear no more

#322: What’s the thing you’re most scared to do? What would it take to get you to do it?

Travelling to a foreign country (where English isn’t widely known) by myself. I’ve never travelled alone before (as in holiday, not tube journey), as I always feel like I’d become a target what with being 5″2, female and generally a kind (some may say too kind) person.

I guess the only thing I could do is just get on with it and bite the bullet, but I think as it’s such an alien concept is always manage to convince myself not to do it. I feel like I need to find a buddy who is in the same situation – then we can ease ourselves into the single traveller lifestyle. I’ve been recommended a few websites that organise group holidays for single travellers (no, not for dating!), but the trips have always been so expensive.

365 Days of Writing Prompts rebellion: Sneak preview!

It’s my first day back in the office after having a relaxing week off, so I don’t really have enough time to write a proper story as the prompt requests, which is a shame. So, instead, I thought I’d share an (incredibly flattering) sneak preview of what will be published next Monday aka Dragons Day! I’ll also be posting and sharing the links and videos on here if anyone wants to find out how I ended up in Norway… in, effectively, a onesie, crash hat and goggles… you’ll be able to here!

Have a great day!Nat Geo Voss Vind  (2)

Image: Kjersti Veel Krauss

Release me

#293: Tell us about the blog post you were most nervous to publish — and what it was like to set it free.

In all honesty I don’t think there has been a post that I was ‘nervous’ to publish… I wouldn’t say that they are ever risqué in the slightest, which I’m assuming is why I’ve never felt that way towards what I’ve written. I guess the only level or factor of nervousness that applies in a very minor form, is the fact that I seem to feel slight apprehension just before I click ‘Publish to chloemayward’ thinking “what if no-one likes it?”. But then again, I’m sure this is a common feeling that occurs to all bloggers once in a while.

P.s. I will be catching up with Thursday 16th – Sunday 19th’s posts tomorrow, as the wifi in Norway wasn’t the easiest thing to keep hold of/ Plus trying to write blog posts on my (crummy old) phone was near impossible. I still don’t count this as a fail because I was sent on a last minute work trip, so couldn’t write them in advance either.

365 Days of Writing Prompts Rebellion: Trykk tur!

AKA… ‘Press trip’ in Norwegian! I had a think about todays prompt, but I just couldn’t get my head into gear to adopt my favourite authors style in order to complete it. The reason being – I’M GOING TO NORWAY! I’ve been invited to attend a super cool press trip for a famous kids film that involves Vikings (not allowed to disclose just yet) and I’m so unbelievably excited. I’ll be leaving early Thursday morning on an 8am flight (ouch!) but will be taking part in so many fantastic activities… one includes a wind tunnel experience to give us the sense of flying on a mythical, fire-breathing, creature. I’m quite frankly ready to burst with excitement and I can’t wait to tell you all about it when I get back!

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Image: wallpaper-download.net

On the road

#273: If you could pause real life and spend some time living with a family anywhere in the world, where would you go?

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Easy… Borneo or Rwanda to live with a family of Orang-utans or Gorillas. It didn’t specify that it had to be a human family! I’ve always dreamed of seeing these fascinating primates in the wild, so this would be ideal.

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Image: Orangutan – www.worldwildlife.org. Gorilla – wildography.co.uk