Welcome back to Feature Friday! This week we have the honor of meeting Michelle from That Texas Couple. Michelle has a travel blog with her husband, and the duo work together to share beautiful pictures, useful advice, and great tips to encourage others to travel the world as well. Continue reading to find out more about Michelle’s adventures, what she regrets, and advice she has for fellow travel bloggers!
1. Thank you for deciding to be a part of Feature Friday. Could you tell us a little about yourself and your blog?
Hi! I’m Michelle, the writing half of That Texas Couple. My husband, Marty, is the photography half of that Texas Couple. Our blog, That Texas Couple, shares our travel tips, tricks, and stories with our readers. As Marty and I are both full time public servants, we take our time off very seriously! We hope to show others that you can work full time and still have a life full of great travel experiences.
2. Why did you decide to become a travel blogger?
We originally started blogging as a way to document our travels together. Marty and I love getting out of the house, so even if we don’t have time to go far away, then we try to become tourists in our own city or state. Our friends and family notices that we were always doing fun things, so they started asking for advice from us. The blog just developed from there. It became an easy way to share our experiences and tips with anyone who was interested.
3. What do you love so much about travelling?
I love how travel makes me more understanding and more appreciative. I feel that being able to see things from the perspective of other people is such an important skill in life. Travel has allowed me to learn new cultures and to see that not everyone lives like we do in America.
4. Have you ever regretted doing something while travelling?
Honestly, the only thing I remember regretting while travelling is not scheduling long enough in a great place. Take Capri for instance, we were staying in Rome for several weeks, so we planned an overnight excursion to Capri, thinking that would be plenty of time to see this little island. Boy were we wrong. Capri is so beautiful and there really is a lot to see and do there, so I was sad that we hadn’t allotted enough time. I really try not to have regrets in life. I just try to make decisions and if they aren’t right, then I learn from them and move on.
5. What is your most embarrassing travel story?
While traveling to Mexico, I was out swimming in the ocean when suddenly I was pulled under. Now I used to be a lifeguard, so I consider myself a strong swimmer. I knew exactly what to do, swim out of the pull, so I did. When I surfaced, I had been pulled pretty far away from the shore, which was fine, I would just swim back in. Then I noticed something felt different. What wasn’t so fine was the fact that the current had taken my bathing suit bottoms off! Needless to say I went as far as I could and then I had to have a towel brought to me to get out of the ocean. And then buy a new swimsuit!
6. Have you ever travelled solo? Would you do it again? If you haven’t, would you ever do it?
I have travelled solo several times. I love the freedom that comes with solo travel. It’s nice to just make decisions for yourself and not have to worry about another person once in a while.
7. Out of all the cities & countries you’ve visited, which did you like the least? Why?
That’s a hard one. I haven’t really been to any country that I totally disliked. I need to give France another chance. When I went there was a historical heatwave, it was 103 the day I landed in Paris. This did make the city a little miserable. I had a hard time finding adequate air conditioning and cold drinks. LOL. I want to go back to France and experience not only Paris again but some of the French countryside as well.
8. Out of all the cities & countries you’ve visited, which did you like the most? Why?
I am smitten with Italy. I love the passion and kindness of the people. I love the food and the wine and all of the history. It’s hard to explain, but Italy just felt like my place. No matter what area we were visiting, I felt at home. I love Italy!
Germany, and specifically the little towns in the Rhine Valley like Bacharach would be a close second. While staying in Bacharach I felt like I was in a fairy-tale village. I loved being surrounded by all the half-timbered houses and vineyards as far as you could see. While touring castles in the area, I realized that I could have easily been a princess in another life. And don’t get me started on the food and wine in this region. We had some of the best bratwurst I have ever tasted and every glass of wine I had was absolutely incredible.
9. If you had to choose one place to live for the rest of your life, where would it be, and why?
Definitely Italy. I have not been to an area of Italy that I didn’t like. Like I said in my previous answer, I love the people and the history of this amazing country. I would eat pasta and gelato and drink wine while I grew old!
10. Are there any social norms or practices you’ve encountered while travelling you wish were normal in your culture?
I love how Europeans treat meal time as an event. I feel like in America, we often eat in front of the television, or we rush through our food. I would love for that to change. I liked sitting down at restaurants in Europe and just stopping to enjoy the wine, the company, and the food without feeling rushed.
11. Is there anywhere you would not visit? Where, and why?
I would be apprehensive to visit areas in the Middle East. I feel like there is a lot of political turmoil that would make this area unsafe for me at this time.
12. What is one thing that is too large/impractical you wish you could bring with you when you travel?
My pillow! I am super spoiled to my pillow and constantly wish that I had it with me when travelling. I fight with hotel pillows to try and get comfortable on them.
13. Do you think there’s a difference between people who call themselves tourists vs. travellers? What do you consider yourself, and why?
I am definitely a traveler. Marty and I like to experience the local life and culture while traveling. We feel that it is important to see how the people really live, and what their everyday life is like in order to truly experience an area. I think that tourists tend to only see the attractions and miss out on the true everyday life of the people.
14. What does home mean to you?
As I said, we are not full-time travel bloggers. So home to us is Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas. Marty and I were both born and raised here, and while we love to travel, this will always truly be home. This is where our roots are and where most of our family is.
15. What advice would you give an aspiring travel blogger?
Go for it! Blogging is hard work, and it can get discouraging sometimes if you don’t see the progress that you are hoping for. But I say, go for it anyway. When I start to get discouraged, I just refocus on why I started blogging in the first place. I refocus on the fact that even if I am helping just one person, then I am helping someone.
Also, get connected with fellow bloggers. This is the best thing I have done. Networking and sharing ideas with like-minded people is so valuable.
Thank you so much Michelle for being a part of Feature Friday, and for sharing with us some of your adventures, pictures, and thoughts. I love the advice you chose to share with aspiring bloggers! Getting connected with fellow bloggers really helped encourage me to continue with my own blog, and helped me learn more about the blogging process in general. Also, you get the chance to meet some pretty cool people, who have done some pretty cool things, and have been to some pretty cool places! I also love how the Europeans treat meals as an event. I personally love taking my time and enjoying the food and the company, but it’s definitely not common place in the United States. Thanks again Michelle, for being a guest on the blog, and I’m wishing you safe travels on your next trip!
Did you enjoy what you read? Get to know more about Michelle!
Michelle is half of the blogging team, That Texas Couple. She and her husband Marty joke that they are wine drinking, chocolate loving, travel addicts. They love to travel and create memories every chance they get. Whether it’s exploring their home state, or jetting to other countries, they find fun experiences everywhere. Connect with Michelle at the following: