Do you ever watch or learn of something and then dream about seeing that place or experiencing that same thing too? Well, I do. There have been many, like sitting on the Spanish Steps in Rome and eating a gelato (“Roman Holiday”), seeing Tuscany and Positano (“Under The Tuscan Sun”) or singing Do Re Mi at the fountain in the Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg, Austria (“Sound of Music”).
Here are two more examples:
In 2014 I watched the movie, “The Way” by Emilio Estevez and Martin Sheen. Two years later in 2016, I found myself walking the Camino de Santiago Pilgrimage on the Camino Frances Route and seeing many of the places filmed in the movie in person.
In 2010, I watched this YouTube video and knew when I visited Bruges, Belgium that I wanted to see the location where this was filmed. I worked out my train connection so I would have about a two hour stop at this beautiful Antwerp Train Station. And of course, I timed it to arrive on a Tuesday (“If It’s Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium”).
Here is a photo of this exact location used in the filming of this YouTube Video.
Yesterday, while taking in some seminars at the Los Angeles Travel Show, a speaker on Travel Photography (Ralph Velasco) showed a series of photos he took in the country of Bhutan (Wikipedia). And when you look at these images taken in Bhutan from Google Images, you can see how these images excited me. He shared photos of the people in Vietnam . I did a search of Google Images that are similar to the ones he posted and it looks like an amazing place to see in person. Even the Lead singer (Terri Nunn) in the band, Berlin, was sitting front and center to see his beautiful photographs and listen to his travel photography tips. So based upon my track record I could possibly make this trip anytime between 2017 and 2019. Let’s see what happens.
This year, I’ll be visiting the amazing country of Croatia (including Dubrovnik) with Shannon’s GrapeHops Tours. I’m very excited about this trip and I am looking forward to also visiting Venice, Italy again. It will be my sister’s first time in Europe so I want to go to London and maybe Tuscany/Umbria and then maybe Rome before returning home.
While at the Travel Show I was so happy to see Shannon again. She is not only a great traveler, but she has worked for many years in the Wine Industry and knows wine! She gave me a sample taste of some wine she brought and it was so delicious. I also had a chance to meet another fellow Slow Traveler, Kathy Wood. She and her husband, Charley, owns European Experiences and they have some amazing tours. Both Shannon and Kathy/Charley organize these wonderful small group tours which even Rick Steves was impressed with, so much so that he mentioned meeting them in his lecture on Sunday. It was pretty cool.
I met Shannon and Kathy on a SlowTalk Community Forum (founded by Pauline Kenny). She has now sold that website and has a new Travel Resource Website called Slow Europe where you can find great lodging recommendations, travel tips and inspiration. It includes a new Slow Europe Community Travel Forum where you can share and receive great travel ideas, tips and recommendations. Meeting these travelers completely changed my life by opening up my mind and eyes to some truly amazing sights and unique travel experiences. I’m hoping that they will do the same for you. I’m one of the active members on the Slow Europe Forum where I go by Kathy (Trekcapri). Signing up as a member is completely free and easy to do. Many thanks to Pauline for creating something very special in the Slow Talk and now Slow Europe Community Travel Forum. I hope to see you all there.
As for the future after my Croatia tour with Shannon, I’m hoping to walk my second Camino in May 2018 from Porto, Portugal to Santiago de Compostela. In the fall I’d like to maybe go someplace new like Sicily, Bhutan, Vietnam, Ireland, Iceland, Norway, Budapest, Romania or maybe I’ll see or learn about someplace new between now and then.