This year has been good to me. The first minutes of 2007 found me here in Melbourne, atop a bridge with the whole neighborhood, looking out to the city where the fireworks are. Though I never got to travel anywhere else this year, I was able to travel around Australia. I joined in the revelry at the Sydney Mardi Gras, and felt the fine white sand of the Gold Coast under my feet. It was here in Australia that I got to experience my first hot air balloon ride, the most perfect birthday gift.
Life was great in Manila as well. Though the devaluation of the dollar left me with income smaller than what I received two years ago, in spite of a pay raise, I managed to enjoy the six months I spent in Manila in between trips. The most notable events would be the number of blogging events I was able to attend. From French cooking classes to Chinese acrobats, indulging in cookies and having fun with the Clique booth; it was great to meet the people behind the blogs I religiously read.
I feel so blessed this 2007, and it’s time I share some of my blessings. No, I’m not giving out free trips :P What I’m giving out is something you can use when you go on your trip: a Lonely Planet Travel Journal. Writing with pen and paper isn’t dead. For most, the writing become more personal and insightful. What better way to jot down your musing while sunbathing at the beach or when the only bus of the day left you stranded in the most decrepit bus terminal in the world?
The Lonely Planet travel journal is not just a glorified notebook. The first page is for your personal information. This is specially handy for remembering your passport number, travel insurance number or your camera’s serial number. If you lose the journal, whoever found out would know how to return it to you, or if you have an accident *knock on wood* your rescuers would know your blood type, allergies and who to contact in case of emergency.
The following pages are for listing your travel schedule. It has spaces for flight details, including flight number, departure and arrival times. The next page is for addresses where you can jot down the addresses of people you’re sending postcards to, of people who’s hosting you, or of that cute guy you met last night.
The journal proper looks like a regular notebook. Certain pages however, have snippets about countries and cities around the world. Near the back is a map of the world, with a close-up map of the continents. There’s also a listing of essential websites for travelers (according to Lonely Planet, anyway). The section that would be most useful for travelers though, are the conversion charts. There’s a ruler in inches and centimeters at the edge of one page, and a clothing conversion chart for men and women. There’s also a simple guide on how to convert from Celcius to Fahrenheit, and imperial to metric measurements. At the last page, a handy decoder thingie for converting time between countries.
So how do you win this very nice travel journal? Simple, just by writing about your favorite, unforgettable travel memory. It can be a trip you took this year or several years ago. Relive the moment and write what made it special and memorable. Post the entry on your blog, and post the URL in the comment box so I can check it out. Not a blogger? E-mail me your story or post it in the comment box. The best entry wins the travel journal, of course Entries will be judged by the evil martian (me) and two other evil creatures. We’re nice people, really. Deadline for submission is December 20, 2007. Winner will be announced on Christmas Day, December 25th.
The fine print: Contest is open only to Philippine residents. Only one entry per person is required, linking back to the contest page is greatly appreciated. The Lonely Planet travel journal will be shipped to the winner via courier (either LBC or Air21), either on the 28th or the 29th.