Anytime Travel Solutions was. honored to be invited to a great Dubai presentation in Miami with the presence of officials from the Government of Dubai Tourism, Dubai Business events, JW Marriott, Starwood Chain. Jumeirah Group, Destination Management Company 24 degrees, Arabian Adventures among others. Our connections in Dubai are strong and ready to serve you to the 4th most visited destination in the world
Dubai is a country where hundreds of nationalities merge to create this vibrant city that keeps you in awe, for the magnificent and unique building structure, the opulence of their gold stores, the malls. the colors and varieties the old Dubai and its spice market, the amazing beaches , the tallest building in the world with 160 stories, an Aquarius that makes you feel vividly inside the ocean , an impeccable sand desert that invites you to extreme relaxation to the tunes and moves of a belly dancer or a huge rush of adrenaline to the ups and downs of your buggy In the sand dunes . Dubai is a place to experience at least once in a lifetime… or more …
I don’t know when it started, but there is a bug in me, that at least every 30-40 days (sometimes less) is itching so bad, that must be taken care.
The symptoms run from being sad, irritable, hyper to total madness, I NEED to have somewhere to go in a close forecast, is needed to keep balance in my life. My family knows,
“Let me travel and no one gets hurt “
So at this moment I am actually doing the second best and favorite human activity
I am writing this blog, probably 36,000 feet up in the sky, as I sip some wine, somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, between Paris and Atlanta GA, luckily comfortable seated, with lots of space to rest my legs and laptop thinking how did I get so blessed?I stole the title of this blog from the bumper car of Giada Gottardi, and got to know her company Podium Travel better, this is one of the many clever and fun phrases that Franco Garattoni comes up with, to promote Travel, they are making a big difference in the Travel Industry, they are so “vanguard” that even the way I connected with them was out of the ordinary and simply outstanding. 2 lovely ladies Giada and Alda Valentini, showing up in my “pueblo” Downtown Melbourne Florida to visit my travel agency, many people don’t even know there is another Melbourne and is not in Australia, They heard from us , through a local colleague that told them , they should visit me. Glad they did. It was a delightful visit, they came from the 2nd smallest country in the world, San Marino! (after the Vatican ) and they specialize in groups throughout Europe.
Who would say few weeks later, and less than 24 hours ago I would be in Rimini and San Marino enjoying a delicious authentic Italian handmade pasta for dinner ; Tagliatelli Bolognese , some fish , grilled vegetables, other dishes and of course Wine, with the great company of the Podium international team of agents, you know that friends take you to the right place ,when you can see the kitchen, see 3 generations working in the restaurant, when people has to wait to get seated, and the place is so loud , you have to shout to talk , delightful~ I am so impressed with them, I met the management and the team agents mentored from around the world, I visit their impressive booth in the most important travel trade and Expo show of Italy and perhaps of Europe called TTG Incontri, I also visit their everyone’s dream offices, a contemporary office place, where free expression of talents is key, they have a Gym , Daycare, Kitchen and all,
I am so impressed with them, I met the management and the team agents mentored from around the world, I visited their impressive booth in the most important travel trade and Expo show of Italy and perhaps of Europe called TTG Incontri, I also visit their Offices; everyone’s dream offices! a contemporary office place, where free expression of talents is key, they have a Gym , Daycare, Kitchen and all, a foosball table in the center, playing and wellbeing time seems as important as the hours they work, I won’t bored you with all their awards and advance technology providing travel services, or the over 150 team agents from around the world speaking about 50 languages, I want to share with you , my enthusiasm to work with peers that understand that “Give back “ is the way , that we are liaisons of all countries, and we have a mission , to educate and help others to Travel, You can have an amazing vacations and at the same time you can make a difference.
Podium Tour Operators, believes in their people, they mentor and support them, they are the first ones to run and organize fundraisers, for their local fellows, like the cookout and funds collection they run to help a restaurant owner in Amatrice Italy, who lost everything, last august in the devastating earthquake, his restaurant was housed in one of the oldest buildings in Amatrice, he belonged to a noble family. Today is all gone.
These colleagues are the people I am drawn in to work with, and these colleagues with the biggest hearts, are the ones that will make time to help others, these are the ones I choose to do business with They are behind every amazing travel experience I have the honor to prepare for you. I must share this because to me is important to spread the word when things are done simply just right!
I believe Travel can change lives, and can shorter the distance between countries, Travel is the second best and favorite human activity as of what is the first one? Of course is …
I have a personality that must create new beginnings to keep the excitement , and to keep me motivated.
In April 2015, major issues shook my world, my confidence and comfort zone and because of this, I must create a new life!!!
I started at home , Family is my top value, and I found the way to focus on them, and what is better than traveling together ?
We started in October 2015, in our F8 Travel, a Journey described in the “about us” section of this blog. And since then, we have created an unbelievable bond and connection. I feel so proud of my family, my kids, including my sisters, brother and my in- laws, for the time we spent, the hours of hugging, the open heart talks, the traditions we created, and the values I transfered from my parents. Examples of these values are to be truth to oneself, follow your dreams, walk the extra mile, and always treat others with respect and acceptance.
A new vision of my business was also planned and is evolving with Social services and sustainability in mind. Inspiring travel opportunities are on the way.
A “house cleaning” of the “fake” friends was done.
Friendship is one of my top values that I cherish for which I give my 100%. I have the privilege to have so many GREAT friends, and we were able to visit some of them around the world. What a blessing!!
May 2016, marks a new beginning with a New Vision, and I am hoping to count on YOU!
I plead for your support, your encouragement, your business and referrals, your advise and, moreover, your prayers for me and my family.
I am eternally Thankful for you to allow me to share my thoughts in your Inbox.
There are towns in the south of Argentina that I will remember forever. El Chalten is one. My family and I were growing tired of hauling our suitcases. (our house and lives were compacted in a suitcase) and also growing tired of long hours on a bus . I expected nothing memorable from our stop in El Chalten and I was almost bothered by having another overnight to stop before our objective : trek in a Patagonian Glacier. El Chalten is known for their high winds , snow covered mountain vistas and more things I probably missed seeing .The winds are so strong that if you become distracted, it can easily blow you away. The unexpectedly fantastic view of the snow covered mountain peaks excited me, not necessarily for my desires but for my kids and, especially, my husband who has watched many documentaries on Patagonia showing it’s many outdoor activities, especially hiking, trekking and mountaineering. After a 12 hour, overnight bus ride from our previous town, in Los Antiguos, there is nothing worse than arriving at 7am to the destination, in the very early morning and hearing “your rooms are not ready, check in is at 12noon”.
But this was our reality of more hours sitting to wait for the rooms. As we waited, we sat on bare wooden benches. Anxiously, my husband and youngest boy were ready to explore the town and surrounding landscape. In contrast, my oldest son cared more for his WIFI connection so he could connect and make more music tunes for his soundcloud collection. For me, I didn’t even know what I desired more, bed ,shower or nothing at all, It had been a difficult day, fighting and holding on to my business and entrepreneurial mind is not an easy task. What I honestly wanted to do was to work, yes, I wanted to be working, i wanted the connectivity at all times as I am use to , this was heavily weighing on me. to not make money has been increasingly frustrating , and building up on me, But the only way to enjoy and experience moments with my family is to live in the moment , cant think of the past, or the future , without reverting back to my “should do list”. I realize that I must create memories and be a role model for my kids while educating myself and my family with values, and appreciate the many cultures which we have been experiencing. F8 journey IS happening now and I cannot be distracted from those core objectives and purpose. Of course, easier said than done! But one must take the bull by the horns and continue onward.
After getting our rooms,
and changing to the most warm clothes a Florida girl owns, we started a small trek that was weather proof available for all. This was a trek to wonderful waterfall, lake views and majestic mountain views. We began the walk and on the way to the trail, I smelled the most amazing homemade scents of lamb. “Cordero”, is announced on almost every corner. I started the trek knowing that this would be my price for finishing the trek.
My discomfort during a trek can not be contained in my mind, but also must be verbalized. During my uncomfortable trek, in my mind, no view of a paradise in the world would have changed my mood. I huffed and puffed as we hiked the 3 miles of climbs and descents. As we passed over a climb, to my surprise, a view of waterfalls and the glacier were extraordinary. I struggled but actually enjoy it. Photos can only partially describe the magnificent views. Not only magnificence from what my eyes were experiencing, but also an epiphany.
Hungry and thirsty we started the return with everyone laughing at my complaints for how difficult was the decent which is typically easier than the ascent. My toes hurt , my knees hurt, my kidneys, other body parts were in pain. We made it back to town and with it being 4pm in this land, it is sac religious to ask for food at this hour. This is the break time when the town’s people take a break from serving tourists. This is the time for themselves to play their music and eat their foods. While I knew and appreciated this ritual, I had an obsession with the thoughts of my prized Lamb dish. We detoured from our return to the hotel and entered a restaurant where I thought we would get the “authentic” experience of Cordero Asado and cure my craving. It was a chance to be among locals and help dissipate my feeling of inadequacy in my business by doing something I truly love: to drink wine and have a nice profound conversation with the locals. We ended up in a place that was filled with Che Guevara’s and other’s quotes and the Mapuche’s culture photos and flags and book titles that have revolutionary tones. This would be a perfect place to cheer me up. I was overjoyed when the owner/attendant agreed to serve us and that they could served the Cordero Asado for which I craved. I chose to stay, against my son’s protests. His idea was to just mingle with the mainstream and eat at the restaurant within our hotel. I loved experiencing the Bohemian lifestyle while treated to a few of the local musicians sitting around practicing their music. I cherish the nice, long talk with the restaurant owner. We talked history and learned more about the Mapuche’s and Tehuelches , native roots in Patagonia. This interest had been sparked and had become a favorite subject during my earlier conversations with another restauranteur, Mario from the restaurant ‘Don Raul’ in San Pedro de Atacama (Chile). This latest conversation regarding the Mapuche culture made me remember and appreciate my admiration for their culture. Mario explained how the Mapuche people were the strongest fighters defending themselves against not only the Spanish conquistadores but the mighty Inca attempts to conquer. This is an interesting subject that I plan to continue to research.
As we sat waiting on our plates, a bottle of wine was in order. Also while we continued to wait for the prized plates, I noticed the owner was seated at another table enjoying lunch with his family. At first glance this was an enduring seen but as time passed and knowing my family was starved, my patience ended and I decided to bother him and asked for our orders to be taken. He immediately stood and began to serve us. One could argue that the wine might amplified my emotions but this lunch/supper meal may be the most rememberable for these reasons;
1) we laughed until tears came out, always loved that, tears of joy, remembering people, anecdotes, kids mimicking others, and mostly laughing at my husband’s funny/senseless jokes,
2) unfortunately, it may be an remembered for the worst meal we had in Argentina . and the priciest we pay in Patagonia. I have been lucky enough to taste gastronomy in many continents and I feel spoiled when it comes to the tastes I have experienced, but having my kids, who pretty much eat anything, telling me that this food was horrible was crushing. My lamb and kids pasta where incredibly bad. Thankfully it was difficult to fail my husband’s salad. But, I couldn’t believe this would end up being the worse meal ever, as far as taste is concerned. I am disappointed and i was banging my head on the wall for insisting on this restaurant because I saw so much potential, but, instead I will choose to be thankful for the laughs and for the learning from the locals that keep the flame of recovering their native lands and roots. I am thankful for the laughs of my kids even if is to make fun of all my aches from trekking and thankful to this meal, for distracting me instead of my thoughts being upset.
Let me say that the stress of not being able to work and create business ideas , 24/7 as I am use to, had not being “cured” and stills haunts me since the first week of our trip. But I am making the efforts to place them aside an living the moment, I am enjoying my family, and trying to smell all the roses in our journey.
I want to point out something that I mention to my travelers when I plan their trips, no matter your destination, your state of mind will always determine how much you enjoy it. In the journey and the destination, your emotional state will allow you to experience the world at its best – good or bad. I pretty much spoiled my trek, but chose to change my state, I would like to point out that I would love to come back to El Chalten with more days than just an overnight. This is a beautiful town where Nature lovers of all countries and all ages come for the pristine looks of hills, lands and Glaciers. Perhaps not like me, expecting too much for the “Cordero Asado”!
The questionable restaurant!
JOURNEYS WITH A PURPOSE *FAMILY *FAITH * FITNESS * FRIENDS * FUNDING * FUN *FOOD * FULFILLING