Travel: Multiplying Peace and Understanding

Donald Trump’s careless, immoral immigration order is not only tragic for humanity but for travel, which promotes understanding and peace.

Shortly after the twin towers went down, I got an email from a National Geographic editor that a pending assignment for a story about an island in the Indian Ocean would not go forward. Exotic destinations were out, he said, Americans were turning inward.

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Poof Went My Frequent Flier Points

Using Points

Traveling on points is great…until it isn’t.

Beware traveler, the American Airlines points you use for flights and for hotels are managed by two different entities and cancellations come at a cost.

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YIMBY: Yes in My Backyard: Neighborhood Vacation Rentals

Vacation CottagePhoto: Russ Johnson

So you want to get off the tourist track, away from the diesel bus stink, the rehearsed hotel staff, the pickpockets and predators that are often drawn to tourists as bees would to a fat-bustled queen. Peer-to-peer vacation rentals can literally put you in a cheaper, better place, a real neighborhood, where you can discover a real sense of the destination you are visiting.

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Life on the Film Festival Circuit

Sonoma International Film FestivalTechnicolor – Photo: Russ Johnson

Memo to my author friends: If you want to party, make a film

I spent part of the weekend at the Sonoma International Film Festival a tribute to art of  film and the consumption of enormous quantities of wine.

Talking to a few filmmakers, I learned a bit about the film festival circuit, which seems a bit like the 21st Century version of a traveling circus. Only much better.

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Go Local: Four Tips to Explore a New Place When You Travel

MetroSM

 

We really love to plunk ourselves down in the middle of town and wing it when we travel, not enslaving ourselves to guidebooks or hotel staff, but leaving ourselves open to whatever catches our fancy. Granted you might not see every landmark or frequent the restaurant that the concierge is promoting, but with a little advance preparation, real and digital, you can make your experience more real and rewarding:

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