Coming Out of Hibernation

Leaves have fallen. Days are getting shorter. Temperatures are dropping. Well, maybe not so much in New York City the past few weeks, but in general. Anyway, you get the gist—winter is coming.

That season usually signals hibernation time, especially for folks like me who absolutely detest the cold and reach for the blankets whenever temperatures dip below 80 degrees Fahrenheit. (It’s true, just ask my husband, and he’ll tell you that I use a down comforter pretty much year round.) But instead I’m coming out of a self-imposed break. A good thing, too, considering that I haven’t added a post to this blog since June.

But that doesn’t mean I’ve been doing nothing.

Iguazu Falls

Provincetown, Cape Cod

I managed to get in some excellent trips the past few months: Cape Cod, Ireland (both North and the Republic), Iguazu Falls (both the Argentine and Brazilian sides), Sao Paulo and New Orleans. I’ll be writing about them all in the next few weeks. The photos here give you an idea of some of the beauty seen in each place.

Dromoland, Ireland

Pralines, Pralines, Pralines (New Orleans)

 

 

 

 

I’ve also kept busy with a few assignments, namely:

Starwood Studies Abroad – a feature about the hotel company’s executive team relocating to China for five weeks, for CFO magazine

Dead Sea Scrolls Exhibit Debuts in Times Square – a write-up on the new show, now on display at the Discovery Center in New York, for DNAinfo.com

Shining a Light on Medical Meetings – a feature about new regulations for medical and pharmaceutical meeting planners, for Successful Meetings magazine

What’s in Your Wallet? – a look at the life of a gift card, from inception to production to use, for Incentive magazine

OK, so only the first two really deal with travel. I’ve kept my foot in the travel world though, through the Uptake Travel Industry News blog. If you haven’t checked out Uptake lately, there have been plenty of changes at the site, with more to come in the near future. A highlight is its new social search feature, Travel Q&A, making it easier than ever to source travel recommendations from Facebook friends.

You’ll also find my 10 Tips for Holiday Air Travel article there. And if you need help finding the ideal hotel room, Room 77 has added new features to its hotel search site, including the ability to book directly and get free concierge services in helping to secure the room you want.

One of the main reasons though that I’m writing here again is because of Passports With Purpose, the annual fundraiser organized by travel bloggers. This season’s charity auction begins tomorrow, and the goal this year is to raise $80,000 to help build libraries in Zambia. In its first three years, Passports With Purpose donated nearly $7,500 to Heifer International and raised enough money to build a school in Cambodia and build a village in India.

Each year the ante gets upped. I’ll save the rest of the details for my post going up tomorrow, but here’s an old post about the 2009 program to give you an idea of the event.

Travelers helping others around the world. I can’t think of a better reason to come out of my proverbial cave and re-launch Prepare for CrossCheck, even if that means I’ll have to brave the coming cold.

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