Well, quite a lot, as it turns out! At least, that’s the impression I got while I was trying to think of a good name for this blog. There were a LOT of options! Rather unsurprisingly, a number of the potential blog titles related in some way to Middle Earth. I thought I would use this first post to explain a little about the name I eventually decided to use and to reveal some of the rejected titles we came up with along the way (some of them better than others). Oh, and keep an eye on the blog tagline! You might notice it change every now and then.
What is an Antill, and why is it Antipodean?
Both good questions! An Antill is, for all intents and purposes: me. It’s my surname. Unlike Tigger, I can’t say I’m the only one, but I AM the only one with a travel blog! That I know of, at least. Antipodean means something that is from or relates to Australia and New Zealand (from the point of view of someone in the Northern Hemisphere). So: I am an Antill and I’m going to New Zealand. Easy!
Honestly, I have to thank my Dad for the name. I’d been going back and forth for weeks on potential names (most of which were pretty… unimaginative), when he just came up with this one over dinner one night. It made me laugh, got the seal of approval from trusted friends and family (and Jon), and most importantly: It wasn’t already taken. I had to have it!
Sophie, you’re basically already a Hobbit without the hairy feet. Why didn’t you go with a Hobbit joke?
I was adamant that I didn’t want to pick a title related to Lord of the Rings for a couple of reasons: a) hopefully I’ll get chance to visit a few more places than just New Zealand (I’m going to Sydney on the way there, and hopefully will see more of Australia and the Pacific Islands at some point); b) contrary to popular belief, the main reason I’m visiting New Zealand ISN’T because it was chosen as the location for Middle Earth (although I will admit that part of me not-so-secretly wants to get a job as a professional hobbit); and c) it would do a disservice to the lovely people of New Zealand to say that their main drawing point was LOTR. There’s so much more that is drawing me to New Zealand and, while I am looking forward to checking out Hobbiton and as many of the filming locations as I can, that isn’t my focus. But let’s face it, there are still going to be a LOT of Hobbit jokes in the coming months!
The reject pile, part I – The Lord of the Rings ones
- Hobbit Tales (thank you, Katie)
- From Derbyshire to the Shire (because I’m from Derbyshire, and NZ is… yeah, you get it already)
- A Long-Expected Journey (because I planned it last May, again, you get it already)
- There and maybe Back Again
- BRB – Walking into Mordor (it makes a jolly walking holiday, don’t you know)
- Too Tall to be a Hobbit (and I Don’t Have Hairy Feet)
- Once Upon a Time in Middle Earth (thank you, Valerie)
- A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Fangorn Forest
The reject pile, part II – The ones that have nothing to do with LOTR
- The Sophiehood of the Travelling Sophie (thank you, Emily! This one was awesome!)
- Itchy Feet (I really, really wanted to use this one, but the blog domain was already taken)
- Making a Mountain out of an Antill (thank you, Chloe)
- STILL Not a Sheep Farmer
- Glitterella Adventures (No, Sudi. Just No)
- Don’t Forget Your Passport
- Postcards & Passports
- Memoirs From My Souvenir Collection (thank you, Saga)
- Wandering, Not Lost (thank you, Jane)
- Fush and Chups (ok, in the interest of full disclosure, Jen’s suggestion was to use the first bit of Kiwi slang I heard. I didn’t really want to leave myself open to that one, so we compromised)
- Not Quite Born Ready, but I’m Getting There
- 174° E (New Zealand’s longitude.. ish)
There they are, make of them what you will (try not to judge too loudly).
What to expect from this blog?
I’m planning to do a couple more “preparation” posts before I leave, after that the aim is to try and do one post about each place that I visit. Obviously, that could change and if I stay somewhere longer, there’ll likely be more than one. I will be putting up some pictures, but this is going to be mostly a written blog. Once I’ve got the online album set up for pictures, I’ll post the link in the contact page. Content of written posts could vary from short notes on where I am and what I’m up to, more informative posts about the places I’m visiting, or stream of consciousness ramblings from your humble Author (I will try and tag those, though). I hope you enjoy reading, and please don’t be afraid to leave a comment!