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Travel Diary

November 2021

And here we are again – still struggling with pandemic. The good news is that this year we have vaccines and know that wearing masks will mostly keep us well.  I took my first domestic trip back in October of this year (2021).  I haven’t been before (I have been focusing more on international trips since I’ve become a travel advisor). Neither had my son and his girlfriend. So, the 3 of us meet there and I am so glad we did! It really helped my state of mind to pack, to get on a flight and see something, anything, that I haven’t seen before. 


I was not disappointed at all. It was wonderful to be with my family (they live in Atlanta, I am in Asheville NC) . The Grand Canyon is just breath taking… one of the worlds natural wonders.  It is amazing to experience being perched at the edge of the  endless  cliffs. Carved out of Colorado River, the rock layers record billions of years of history and many unique species. It's simply amazing and takes your breath away. 


And it’s really special to share it with my son…we haven’t really had a chance to travel together much in the past. I  have already chosen my new years resolution: to take one major trip each year with him. We explored, ate and even hiked inside the canyon, together (although not all the way down. I was fearful I wouldn’t make it back up again under my own power).  

I’m already thinking of where to go next year. I’m open for suggestions. Email them to me  - especially if you have an experience of traveling with your adult child (or children.) gwen@greatgetawaytours. 

Watch for the next installment: Antarctica in February 2022!

May  2020

Here we are in the midst of the first world pandemic since 1918. I am doing a bit of "armchair travel" since I am social distancing like everyone else is doing. I went for a 4.8 mi hike this past Monday when I knew most people would be back at work.  While taking in the view from the peak of the mountain, I started wondering about what age will I have to stop traveling and hiking. How old is too old? I mentioned it to one "crazy" girlfriend and she said "never!" Well, that's a good theory but we all age and are less capable of physical ability. Back at home, I put in “traveling and age” in my browser and I found this film called "Edie."  Added bonus, it was filmed in Scotland (our Scotland trip is moved to ASeptember 2021). The elderly woman had been widowed in her 80's and she had lived her entire married life as caretaker of her abusive, invalid husband for many years. She realizes she regrets almost her whole life. She never had the opportunity to do what SHE wanted to do. But, she finds a photo that she and her father had shared of Suilven, one of Scotland’s most spectacular mountains. It was their dream to scale it someday. In that moment, she knows what she will do.


Fortunately, most younger women are more independent and don't fall into the social traps that many of our Mothers did. It was an inspiring and, in several ways, answered my question.


For now, I’m doing a lot of armchair exploring and planning for future trips. Scotland will happen Septembe 2021 and South Africa is still on the books for April/May 2021. I hope you can join us!



I love to travel. I love everything about it. I love the idea of new places, new adventures, and learning new things.  I remember my first airplane trip fondly. 

Whatl I truly remember is the thrill of going up. Seeing the puffy clouds outside the window was so amazing to me. The feeling of what it might be like to be a bird. But no sooner than we reached cruising altitude, we started descending. It was only about 30-minute trip, max. After all, Chattanooga is only about an hour and a half from Atlanta by car.   


My cousin and her husband met us at the airport. We hugged and hung out for a little while and then we got on the return flight home. In those days, there wasn’t much hassle about it.  I’m forever grateful my cousin did that for me. It was the beginning of my love to try something new, to go somewhere new.

Check back for more...going through my journals for more to share!






Susan Sontag

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