18 September 2014

I won the Big Blog Exchange 2014!

Tuesday, 16th Sept 2014 - 7:02pm.

It was an incredible feeling - something mere words cannot justifiably describe, when I learnt that, together with 15 other bloggers from around the world, I'd won the Big Blog Exchange (BBE) 2014.  The gradual build-up of two weeks' worth of cooped-up anxiety as I patiently waited for the results to be announced were released in one mind-blowing instant of sheer jubilation.... and relief.  My emotions went berserk, my head spun and never in my life have I punched air with such vengeance.  At the second time of asking, I've done it!  I've won the Big Blog Exchange!

My usually-lifeless phone suddenly came alive as a frenzied flurry of calls, congratulatory texts and social media messages started pouring in from the world over - from relatives, friends, bloggers and fellow contestants alike.

Then a few minutes later.... this.

Oh my god, I've been swapped with Belen from Buenos Aires!  I was overjoyed beyond words; my voice cracked as I spoke on the phone and my hands were shaking in a lame attempt to reply all those text messages.

From the start, Argentina was always my exchange destination of choice (if I won) - and although the organiser, Hostelling International (HI), weren't obliged to grant winners their wish, I was lucky enough to have mine fulfilled.

It felt surreal.  It still does.

31st October 2014 is when my 10-day exchange to Argentina begins and, as I write, I'm awaiting HI's word on the itinerary and flight arrangements.  Still over five weeks to go and I'm already deathly-anticipative of the adventure and, for all intents and purposes, more than good to go.  NOW.

I'd like to express my heartfelt gratitude to each one of you who had rooted for me during the competition - be it by way of your acts of support, your words of encouragement or your kind, valuable votes.  Do follow my adventures by regularly visiting The Big Blog Exchange website from 31st October 2014 onwards.  As promised, I'll take all of you along with me on the ride.  And, HI, thank you so much for the opportunity.

To my fellow bloggers who did not succeed in this year's competition, like me, please try (and try) again until you do.  We bloggers are a passionate, nerdy lot who don't give up easily.  Think of all those times when we just HAD to finish writing a post no matter what - even when we felt brain-dead and were at a total lost for words.  We never give up.  When BBE2015 comes along, I've got your back; you can count on that.

Lastly to my exchange partner Belen, ask your hermano to keep the beer cold for me, wilya please? ....  'coz Argentina, here I come!


  1. Oh Argentina, it's gonna be so amazing! I cannot wait to see where send you! Buenos Aires, Ushuaïa, Iguazu and El Chalten are some of my favorites!

    1. Hi, Lucie! Thanks for dropping in and leaving a line. Indeed, Argentina is mind-blowing! This'll be my first taste of South American culture and I'm truly looking forward to it. I earnestly hope the nice people at HI have thrown in Patagonia into the itinerary. Now THAT would be out of this world.

  2. Sooooooo happy for you, Vince! Wishing you the trip of a lifetime!! :)

    1. Thank you so much, Karien. No doubt it'll be just that. Still awaiting the itinerary and flight info from HI as I speak. You have a great day now.