Hello! I’m Connie Veneracion — lawyer by education, writer by passion and photographer by obsession.
“About me” in a nutshell
I was a lawyer who traded my career for motherhood. When my girls went to school, I found a creative outlet through blogging which led to op-ed and food columns in a broadsheet, and a regular column in a parenting magazine.
I have left print media but I am still a blogger.
Tasty Safari: the backstory
Yes, this is a new blog born in November 17, 2018, less than a month after my 55th birthday (the intermittent travel posts dated earlier than November 17, 2018 were merely moved and redirected from my other blog). I was writing a recipe for our previous night’s dinner when I realized that I do not want to spend the next ten years writing nothing else but recipes.
I’ve been a food blogger for 15 years. It has allowed me to do the two things that have always given me self-fulfillment — write and take photos. But, after 15 years, plating our home meals, photographing them and describing how I cooked them can be, well… 15 years is a long time to be doing the same thing and not much else. As much as I’ve enjoyed it, I’ve reached a point where I feel the need to do something else. Something different. Something more. Something well beyond my comfort zone.
My girls are all grown up and I am now at that wonderful stage in my life where I can think about what I want to do to continue to grow as a person. I want to see new places, experience unfamiliar cuisines (no, not in the Andrew Zimmern sense), then bring home ingredients and cooking ideas culled from my travels and document all of them in this blog.
What Tasty Safari IS
Tasty Safari is my idea of retirement. It is a diary — a collection of personal stories, my impression of places, people, lifestyles, food and travel in general.
In some cases, visiting a place triggers memories of legends I’ve heard about. Sometimes, it’s the history of the place that fascinates me. Other times, there are controversial policies that affect or may affect tourism. I write about those as well.
If there are books, movies or TV shows that inspired my choice of travel destinations, they will be written about.
Travel-inspired recipes are part of Tasty Safari too. When I discover a new cuisine or dish during travel, I’m always eager to try it when I get home.
What Tasty Safari IS NOT
Tasty Safari is NOT a travel guide. If you look over all the travel posts I’ve published in the past, you’ll realize that, with very few exceptions, recommending what you should visit and where you should eat is not my thing at all.
Tasty Safari is NOT about plane ticket promos nor how to get visas.
Tasty Safari is NOT about what to wear so you can look hip when wintering in Hokkaido or summering in Bali. Neither is this blog a source of information for gadgets and accessories for taking selfies.
Tasty Safari is NOT about traveling on a tight budget, the cheapest accommodations and least expensive meals. Rather, it is about traveling on a realistic budget, comfortable accommodations (always with a private bathroom and, as much as possible, with no stairs to climb) and eating good food heartily.
See, I am not a backpacker; I never have been.
I do love bargain shopping though.
What Tasty Safari MIGHT BE
Although I’m not a great photographer (I’m forever trying to be better though), I just might include some practical tips and resources for travel and food photography.
And, lastly, I hope to write about “how to write” for those of you who might want to do some storytelling of your own.
Tasty Safari hopes TO INSPIRE retirees and empty-nesters
Right. Tasty Safari is probably not for everyone. I am hoping, however, that it will inspire fellow retirees, soon-to-be retirees, empty nesters and soon-to-be empty nesters to take the opportunity to occasionally enjoy life away from home. After all, you’ve worked most of your adult life — isn’t it the perfect time to treat yourself to the occasional travel and do things for which you never seemed to have the time and budget in the past?
If you’re still reading this, you probably get the drift. So, welcome aboard. Enjoy the ride. Be inspired. Perhaps, we’ll bump into each other in some part of the world someday.
P. S. If you want to read why travel is my idea of retirement with purpose, click here.