Greetings from Toronto!
I had the chance to connect for dinner with members in both Ottawa and Toronto recently, and it was a wonderful reminder to me of why we do what we do here. Drinking wine, sharing memories, and talking travel with old friends and new connections...it never gets old for me and it was like a shot in the arm (the best kind!) that reinvigorated me to stay the course in the face of the many challenges we're facing at the moment.
I went through a few of those challenges on the outlook on travel for the next 6 months in our webinar last week (replay in your newsletter), and my short recap is this:
- We still don't know the full impact of Omicron, but it's possible it's not all that bad
- Until the situation definitively calls for it, all of our trips remain a 'go'
- There will still be a lot of ups and downs and changing measures in the world of travel
- Most important of all is that you feel comfortable in your decision to travel or not
The new variant has unsurprisingly caused a lot of hesitancy and uncertainty, and you can rest assured that we will be monitoring it as closely or moreso than anyone as we prepare for our upcoming trips.
I can't say how it will all turn out, but I think it remains as crucial as ever that we maintain a resolute attitude to it all, and that it will all work out eventually. I think if we take a few steps back from it all, we might see that the fear around the new variant is a good reminder of the importance of living life creatively, and not reactively.
The monoculture of the day seems to have elevated the status of 'reactions', whether on Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and the like, by so-called 'influencers' chasing shallow attention-seeking over exploring depth and meaning.
Living creatively on the other hand is about crafting intentions, stopping to reflect on what it is that YOU actually want, and staying inspired by your dreams regardless of what anyone else has to say about them.
This idea of living creatively is something I try to inject into our trips - I want to take you to places that will spark your creativity and share experiences with you that will add meaning to and change your life.
By change your life I don’t really mean in a spiritual awakening context (though let’s not exclude any possibilities...there's a lot of energy around our upcoming Camino de Santiago trip), but rather change your life in the sense of bringing new friends, new memories, and new learnings to your life. Things to add to the wonderful energy that is you, to make you a more complex and whole human being.
I suppose that’s a lofty goal, but that’s the motivation that underlies what we’re here to do, and it's what I felt re-inspired to do by reconnecting with members of this community the past few weeks. Thank you ever so much for the inspiration and the indulgence of your time and attention...one of these days all this good energy we've been generating will take form in an incredible trip to somewhere!
The last thing I'll mention is that our (virtual) office will be closed from Dec 23 - Jan 4 as we will take a much-needed break over the holidays. We will of course continue to monitor anything trip-related, and will check our emails for anything urgent.
I will however send a short Christmas message next week, so I'll sign off for now. Stay warm and stay positive...there's always lots to be grateful for 🙂