So happy to have met this talented travel blogger (although he doesn’t want to admit it!) His photos are so nice that it makes me want to pack up, book tickets and leave! I could not pass up the opportunity to feature him, of course. I did not give him a choice, actually. I just told him that he will be featured — khalas!
Name : Gelo Santos, MD
Location : Dubai, UAE
Blog : Beyond Toxicity @ www.docgelo.com
How did you start blogging?
*I’ve been keeping my blog or what I consider, my virtual home since May 8th, 2007. Almost 8 years ago, I started blogging on Friendster, until a very good friend, who’s also into blogging suggested to migrate my then primitive posts to WordPress.
My aim then was simply to document the growing up years of my son, and the weekend activities of my early family life.
However, after countless gastronomic adventures from hole-in-the-wall-eateries to buffet dining in premier hotels, my site became a family & food blog. Not long after, I began posting our out-of-town-trips and few of our family travels abroad. It has evolved into what it is now. A travel and food blog.
What do you write about?
At present, I enjoy sharing what I am passionate about – traveling and food.
Tips for new bloggers?
- Blog about something you, yourself will be interested in reading. I believe we must celebrate ourselves first, before we can share pieces of our thoughts to our readers and followers.
- Establish connection with your readers. There’s no point of having a public blog when you’re anti-social. Your virtual friends, followers and commenters would keep your blog alive.
- Write and feature something inspiring yet truthful.
- Observe integrity in blogging.
- Always write from the heart (unless you’re blogging about food then think of your stomach 😀 )
What are the challenges you face with blogging?
- Despite I try to keep my amateur photos raw and never done photoshop yet, it usually takes me 2 days to publish a blog post – from sorting out pictures, cropping, resizing, minimal color & saturation adjustments, recalling stories behind every photo.
- Encountering what they called, writer’s block or having lack of motivation to blog also impose personal challenges on blogging.
What do you do outside blogging?
I have a day job and I try my very best to thrive as one of the Overseas Filipino Workers in Dubai.
I’m a licensed General Physician in the Philippines, had worked as a College Instructor for Medical surgical Nursing and as NCLEX-RN Review Lecturer in Manila. I’m also a former lecturer in a Medical University-College in Penang, Malaysia for 3 years prior to transferring to Dubai, UAE to work as pre-authorization Medical Reviewer in a TPA/Medical Insurance companies.
Blogs you recommend my readers should read/follow?
I’m an avid follower of a fellow Filipino Travel blog based in NY, USA, Nomadic Pinoy. However, for some unknown reason, the author ceased blogging since last year. Nevertheless, his posts remain an inspiration for me.
Another travel blog to follow is Wazari Wazir, a Malaysian photojournalist.
Name 3 Random facts about you
- I like music, but it seems, music doesn’t like me. I was a member of an all-boys-choir in early school days, played local string instrument called, banduria in a roundalla when I was 10, learned to play a recorder in school, and was desperate to try violin for 6 months in Malaysia but unsuccessful. Now, I’m leading a rock star lifestyle in videoke sessions with my closest friends in Dubai.
- I know how to cook and my dishes are delicious (Remember the rule I follow? Be a fan of yourself, hehehe! Seriously, you need to appreciate and love yourself more than anybody else).
- I cannot swim or ride a bike. End of story.